Recruitment & Retention Resources
Inviting your friends to a practice is a great place to start for recruiting team members. Create a Facebook event inviting people or make some flyers to pass around inviting anyone to participate. We have some recommendations below as well for recruitment, plus assets to assist with creating promotional material for your new team. When thinking about your ‘elevator pitch’ for recruiting members, highlight the number of people in our community (we have thousands of athletes worldwide!), your passion for the sport, that individuals can be part of a new sport that is still growing, etc.
As your team grows, be sure to continue to promote your team. Host practices in high traffic areas, create a team email address and social media pages so people can find you. Also feel free to create a simple website for your team. You’ll also want to make sure you add your team to the US Quidditch teams directory to help provide visibility for your new team. Info can be found below on how to do this, along with other suggestions to help promote your team.
US Quidditch Logo
For a .png file of the US Quidditch logo for any marketing materials you may create, please click here.
If needing photographs for marketing materials, click here. Please be sure to credit the photographer.
US Quidditch Videos
Here are a few links to videos you can utilize to show people a bit about our sport:
We recommend VistaPrint for ordering business cards, which allows you to design from one of their templates or upload a design of your own. You can also purchase business card stock at any office supply store or online retailer and print them at home.
Free Graphic Design Tools
Looking to create some graphics for any flyers or online event pages you may be creating to market your team? Here are some free resources we recommend below.
- Pixlr X
- Helpful for quick and easy photo editing.
- Great for creating informational banners, logos, and images for flyers, social media platforms, presentations, and more.
- Online photo editor and design making platform.
- Google Drive
- Between Google Doc, Drawing, and Presentation, there are several ways to make professional layouts for free that can then be exported as PDF or image files.
Event Marketing Platforms
Wanting to find ways to market your practices or team events beyond creating a Facebook event? Here are some resources we recommend.
- Event ticketing platform with the option for free tickets or paid tickets. We recommend the ‘Essentials’ if you are just looking for very basic support. Please note that if you are charging a fee for your event via Eventbrite they will take a percentage of your revenue, though you can pass some fees on to the buyer. Free tickets are not charged a fee. You also have the option to contact our attendees if needed. Your event is also searchable on Eventbrite by anyone looking for events in your area/category.
- Event ticketing platform with the option for free and paid tickets. RSVPify also offers data collection so you can contact your attendees as needed. Please note that if you are charging a fee for your workshop via RSVPify they will take a percentage of your revenue. Free tickets should not be charged a fee.
Free Website Creation Tools
If you want to create a website for your team so you have presence beyond social media platforms, here are some platforms we recommend.
- With hundreds of templates to choose from, Wix is great for anyone who does not have a coding background to build a website. Simply choose a template and drag and drop your info, pictures, etc. as you build and maintain your website. Free websites will include a .wix in the url - paying for your website on wix will get rid of that.
- Offering a few dozen templates and basic support, you can create a free website with WordPress in just a few minutes. Inexpensive monthly payments are also offered if you’re looking to create something with a bit more bells and whistles to it.
- Weebly provides guidance for creating your website with an easy customizable website builder, providing starter guides and planning tools for the creation process. Weebly is great if you think your team may create and sell merchandise down the road, as it doubles as a wonderful e-commerce website as it pairs well with Square for accepting payments via the website.
Social Media Platforms
The three platforms we recommend for creating a presence for your team are:
- Great if you want to share visual updates with your followers such as team practice photos, videos, creating updates via a graphic design tool and posting as a photo, etc.
- Helpful if you’re looking to share quick updates and links with your followers on how your team is doing and any upcoming events.
- Allows you to create a team page, allow people to ‘like’ your page, share updates about your team, provide team contact info, create events on your team page, etc.
Where & How to Promote Your Team
There are a variety of ways you can market your workshop if you are offering one to the public:
- MailChimp or a similar email marketing service like Constant Contact
- If you have a list of email addresses already you would like to contact, feel free to use MailChimp to create and send a free e-blast!
- Post On Local Event Calendars or School Calendars
- Research event calendars for your city (you can simply google ‘CITY NAME event calendar’) and add your practices to those calendars. Don’t forget to search for event calendars in nearby cities as well. Don’t forget to include any links for sign-ups/event pages for your team if you have one. If part of a school, add your practices to a school calendar or newsletter if there is one!
- Reach Out to Local Media
- Create a press release about your new team (an example template to follow can be found by clicking here) and email it to local media contacts.
- When emailing it to a media contact, you will look for a contact for either an editor, general news, or share with the press release contact if they have it specifically identified.
- For other tips related to email subject line, follow ups, etc. click here.
- Posting Flyers
- Create flyers and post them around town! Take them to local coffee shops, schools, checkout counters of restaurants, libraries, post office, laundromat, barber shops/hair salons, grocery stores, churches, community centers, day care centers, etc. If recruiting for a school team, post them around your school and pass them out.
- Create swag with your event or team info to pass around. You could make beverage koozies, pens, cups, reusable bags, stress balls, etc. Make sure to put a ‘call to action’ on your item such as a website or email address someone can reach out to for more information. Great resources to create your own branded swag include 4imprint, Swagchimp, Epromos, and Successories.
- Having your practice in a public, high traffic area can help provide visibility for your team and lead to being able to market your workshop! Feel free to switch up your practice location to mix up the crowd you would interact with. Welcome to also host pick-up games! Also consider having a sandwich board/signage out while practicing listing your team name, team website/contact info, upcoming events, etc. Blank sandwich board signs are available to purchase at many retailers, both at brick and mortar stores and online. We recommend getting a corrugated cardboard sign custom printed through a site like Signs on the Cheap and then use velcro strips to attach it to the sandwich board.
- Social Media
- Create Facebook events, post in local parent Facebook groups, consider paid advertisement on various social media platforms.
- Be sure to keep your social media account up to date, posting things such as practice photos, team bonding experiences, etc. so people will be encouraged to follow your account.
- If a community team, consider utilizing FourSquare and register your team on the platform. Encourage teammates to check-in at your practices or scrimmages.
- Meetup.com or City Socializer
- Great for community team recruitment. Meetup is a service used to organize online groups that host in-person events for people with similar interests or looking to try new things. You can plug your quidditch team, post info about upcoming practices, etc. Try to use buzz phrases in your description such as ‘mix of rugby and dodgeball’ to help capture people who may be searching for other opportunities and then will stumble across yours! City Socializer is similar, but helps link people to other people and social opportunities based on their profile interests. Advertise your practices or pick-up games as much as you can!
- Cross Promote with Other Area Leagues
- Consider giving shoutouts to area sports teams. An example for a school team, promote the schools big baseball game on your social media page cheering them on. For community teams, you could promote your city’s dodgeball leagues start of the season and wish all the teams good luck. Cross promotion posts may help drive traffic to your social pages, plus it’s always great to show great sportsmanship towards others! And hey, those teams may turn around and give you a shout out every now and then too.
- You can work with fellow coaches of other sports leagues in your area to do combined training and conditioning camps. This helps get players familiar with those in other sports plus helps raise awareness of your team. For youth teams, it’s a great way to show athletes and their parents how multiple sports can increase overall skill and athleticism.
- Club Fairs/Host a Table
- If you are recruiting for a school team, check if your school hosts a fair for all clubs on campus! If so, make sure to host a table and collect sign-ups while sharing information about your team. If you missed the club fair, or if your school does not have one, reach out to the school administration to see if you can host a table during lunch time near your school cafeteria or other high traffic areas. Your target demographic will most likely be freshman and sophomore students in college, or for club teams look for places that would attract recent college graduates, people that are new to town, or individuals interested in rec sports.
- Word of Mouth
- One of the most basic means of communication - word of mouth! Be sure to share the word about your team to those you meet throughout the day, and encourage teammates to do the same.
- Wear Quidditch Gear
- Feel free to wear quidditch gear when you can as well as it serves as a great conversation starter and excuse to talk about your team! If you don’t have team specific gear yet, check out USQ’s store for a variety of merchandise.
- Give Back to Your Community
- Round up your team and help a local project, clean parks, volunteer at a nursing home, or anything that improves your local community. Not only will you win direct support of the people in your community and provide visibility to your team, it also has a good chance of landing you media coverage. Plug images and coverage from community outreach events are a great look for your team. Be sure to be wearing team jerseys, t-shirts, or anything that helps make you recognizable as a team or brand.
- US Quidditch
- Add larger open practices or showcases to the US Quidditch event calendar! You can do so by filling out this form linked here. You will need to create a free USQ account to submit an event. When submitting your event, you can mark it under the ‘other’ category.
How to Market Quidditch
You want to ensure you have a good elevator pitch for the sport, and find ways to talk about quidditch in an exciting way to pique interest. A few things to point out are:
Validate quidditch by bringing out the most athletic sides of the game. Say it is fast paced, full contact, coed and is a mix of sports such as rugby, flag football, and dodgeball. If you have recruiters with a variety of sports in their background, have them highlight that and tie it into how it helps them with quidditch or helps them improve on skills for other sports.
Travel is your next talking point. Use the places you’ve been and the people you’ve met from other teams as a gateway to recruits. People want to travel and when you give them a chance to, they are more inclined to be apart of the team.
Final talking point: you’re a social group. You do hang outs, dinners - anything you need to show that the team is a good place to find a family away from home and a place to socialize and hang out. Players want to have a home at school and are looking for social situations. If you can give them a place where they can have lots of friends, feel comfortable, and have fun, then they will be more inclined to join.
Email Address Collection
Collecting email addresses of interested participants is a very important step to ensure you can contact those individuals for future practices and events. Being able to contact individuals for reminders and to send info on the first few practices of the year to your entire contact list will be very helpful. However you decide to collect email addresses, people need to opt-in to getting emails from you, so double check the language on your sign-up form so it’s clear about that.
US Quidditch Teams Directory
Once you have a team email, social media pages, and website (if you choose to create one), it’s time to add yourself to the USQ teams directory! This is a great free resource for your team, even if you are not an official team yet!
Create an account by clicking here.
Once an account is created create your free team profile by clicking on 'My Team' and then 'Register a Free Team' on your dashboard. You will want to register as 'unofficial'.
Once your profile is approved by USQ (usually within a week), be sure to go back to your Dashboard and click ‘My Team’ and ‘Information’ (or click here to be directed there) and add in a team bio, upcoming practices, links to your social media pages, etc.
Recruitment and team exposure are important for building a team, but the next important step is retention. You want to ensure you are focusing efforts to keep the people on the team you have recruited. A few tips include:
Emails: Be sure to email them practice times so they know when to show up. Even if they do not show up for the first practice, keep them in the loop for the first few practices before taking them off your list.
Practice Environment: Ensure practices are a positive environment and provide an opportunity to learn the basics. Encourage veteran players to mentor new recruits and take time to get to know them and cheer them on during practice. Creating a good atmosphere that is welcoming and making people feel good about what they are participating in will make people want to come back.
Communication: After your new recruits come back to a practice, collect more informal contact information (cell number, social media handles, etc.) Also add them to your teams Facebook group, text or group messaging chats, etc. Anything that will help them stay informed and feel even more a part of the team.
Team Goals: Every team and organization needs a goal and a mission. Businesses have mission statements, your quidditch teams goal is your mission statement. Make sure your goal is reachable but also challenging. Goals need to be realistic and authentic to your team. It should not be too easy (score 1 goal) or too hard based on your skill level. Every team will have different goals; some will be to win nationals, some to win regionals, some to qualify for nationals, some to win a few games. All our good as long as it meets your team’s skill. Goals give teams a focus and a purpose. With purpose comes commitment from your players. The team’s sense of purpose will make it easier to keep players because they will feel like they are a part of something bigger than themselves and that their work is worth it.
Collegiate Retainment Additional Tips: Retainment over winter break can be difficult so make sure your goal goes from September (beginning of USQ) to April (end of USQ season). If players know the goal is still there, they will stay committed over break and be more likely to return even in colder weather. For teams with Fall regionals, don’t be saddened about not auto qualifying at regionals; use the at large bid process or open division at nationals as motivation to keep working as a team. If your goal is not to qualify for nationals, or it is not possible to, join a quidditch conference in your region and see what other tournaments are happening on the event calendar that you may want to travel to.
Practice Schedule: Give your team a consistent practice schedule so they can start planning out their semesters with quidditch in mind. If players and recruits know practice will always be certain days of the week for a couple hours then they will be able to add it to their schedule. Routine is something people crave and if you start your consistent practice schedule early, you can make sure quidditch is apart of your new recruits routines.
Provide Competitive Opportunities Early: Get new players on the field early on. Being able to play games and actually represent your school is a huge motivator and inspires players to keep playing. When you get to actually play other schools it makes the sport feel more legit and makes young players feel more motivated to continue playing and want to be successful for their school. If your team is very good and has cuts for players to make rosters, find small tourneys to send a team of back ups to, or host unofficial games against another nearby team so that even young, and inexperienced players get a chance to play.
Socialize As A Team: Hang out as a team outside of quidditch practice. Eat dinner together, play video games, board games, volunteer together, anything. These social events will create a bond and camaraderie that young players will crave. It will develop a family mentality to the team and make all players want to stay and keep playing and hanging out with the group of people they’re with.
- Have a Team Carpool: Offer to drive your teammates or new/interested recruits to and from practice. This gives more accountability and motiviation for people to be at practice and is a nice way to have more bonding time with everyone outside of practice.