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Rotary eClub of Melbourne – Charter Night

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Rotary is split into various districts, with Melbourne’s eastern and southeastern suburbs included in District 9810, while the inner city and western suburbs, as well as parts of regional Victoria are in District 9800.

District 9800 has also initiated a new virtual club, following the lead of District 9810, which charted its eClub last year.  This evening I attended the Charter Night for the Rotary eClub of Melbourne, to meet Rotarians in the neighbouring district and to compare the two eClubs.

While both eClubs have similarities, District 9800 is operating a hybrid model, which will include regular physical meetings.  District 9810 operates as an eClub, with informal physical meetings to support members.

Tonight’s Charter Night officially launched the eClub of Melbourne and it is great to see Rotary exploring how it can harness the Internet to engage members.

Rotary Club of Ringwood

Marketing and Rotary – Presentation to the 2013 Rotary District 9810 Conference

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The Rotary Conference is an annual event designed to bring clubs across District 9810, covering Melbourne’s eastern and south-eastern suburbs, together for networking and knowledge exchange.

The conference was held in Wangaratta, and despite replacement coach services it was enjoyable weekend filled with a range of Rotary projects.

The weekend conference covered new initiatives and projects undertaken by clubs within the District. One of the sessions included Marketing and I had the privilege of presenting an overview of strategic marketing to the assembled Rotarians.

Alex Makin on stage at the Rotary District Conference in Wangaratta

Alex Makin on stage at the Rotary District Conference in Wangaratta

Rotary, like any other organisation, needs effective marketing to achieve its goals. Marketing enables individual Cubs to identify their target markets and the objectives they wish to achieve.

Marketing is broader than member recruitment and needs to encompass all potential markets of a Club, including business partners, community organisations and public support. Each of these target markets will have specific reasons for becoming involved and Clubs need to develop consistent messages to ensure a positive interaction.

Individual Rotary Clubs possess their own strengths and these should be used to develop a competitive advantage relative to other organisations. Rotary Clubs are ultimately competing for people’s time and resources. The value proposition needs to demonstrate the benefits from being associated with Rotary.

Key messages should reinforce the strengths of the Club and articulate this value proposition. For example, Clubs could demonstrate the professional skills that are gained through assisting with Rotary projects and the benefits this provides for career prospects. Similarly, Clubs can demonstrate the benefits for business partners in aligning themselves with a globally recognised brand and potential customer base.

Every form of contact someone has with the Club, whether it be through bulletins, brochures, meetings or correspondence is a form of a marketing; since an impression is left with every encounter. All marketing tools need to reinforce the key messages and develop a consistent brand image for the Club.

Alex and the presentation slides at the Rotary District 9810 Conference

Alex and the presentation slides at the Rotary District 9810 Conference

Similarly, a Club’s website and social media presence needs to complement existing forms of communication. A club should utilise a number of tools and evaluate each of them to measure their reach with the desired target market.

Inconsistency creates confusion and diminishes the ability to encourage the target market to interact with Rotary.

Rotary is a high involvement product, it requires a significant commitment from individuals and a consistent image helps to ensure top of mind awareness. In addition, encouraging involvement in projects can assist in recruiting members for specific tasks and to demonstrate the outcomes they can achieve.

The District Conference is a great opportunity to meet fellow Rotarians and to discuss ideas, it is great to see marketing being considered as part of the program fixture.

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Rotary Club of Ringwood

#RotaryChat – Service Projects and New Generations

By Advice for Not-for-profit Organisations and Charities No Comments

New generations, or the need to recruit younger people into Rotary, is a key focus of the current Rotarian year.

The weekly RotaryChat has spent several weeks on this topic, with today’s conversation discussing how projects can assist in developing skills and recruiting younger Rotarians.

The transcript of the RotaryChat is available through Story at the following link:


Alex Makin with other charter members at the inaugural meeting of the Rotary eClub of Greater Melbourne

Inaugural Meeting of the Rotary eClub of Greater Melbourne

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The Rotary eClub of Greater Melbourne was successfully charted earlier this month, after reaching the required 25 members.

This evening the Club held its first meeting, providing an opportunity for members to meet each other and to discuss the next steps for the first Rotary eClub in Victoria and Rotary District 9810.

Syneka Marketing developed the Rotary eClub of Greater Melbourne website providing an online community, with a range of interactive tools including forums and online conversations. These tools aim to replicate a Rotary meeting environment by encouraging participation, as well as maintaining a transcript of each meeting.

The eClub provides Rotary with new opportunities to expand its membership by promoting the organisation to new target markets. The Rotary eClub of Greater Melbourne will be able to complement the activities of existing Rotary Clubs within the District.

Alex Makin with other charter members at the inaugural meeting of the Rotary eClub of Greater Melbourne

Alex Makin with other charter members at the inaugural meeting of the Rotary eClub of Greater Melbourne

In particular, there are significant opportunities to promote the Club to individuals who are unable to attend weekly meetings, due to work or travel commitments. It is also important that the eClub is able to attract new members into Rotary, rather than siphoning members from other Clubs. For example, the eClub has significant potential in being able to introduce younger members into Rotary. In this regard, it will be important to promote the eClub through its community service projects and utilise this as a way to introduce Rotary to a new generation of prospective Rotarians.

Planning is now underway for the Club’s activities and an official charter event will be held in the middle of August.

For further information on the Rotary eClub of Greater Melbourne please visit www.rotaryeclubgreatermelbourne.org.au