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Churchill Plan, Prioritize National BSA strategic communications and marketing and make additional investments in related efforts

**This topic relates to one of the Proposed RECOMMENDATIONS Being Considered namely -

  • “Prioritize National BSA strategic communications and marketing and make additional investments in related efforts.”

This topic bears on the other recommendations that follow:

  • Streamline all Safe Scouting Resources and consolidate in one location.
  • Consolidate local and national websites into a single unified web platform.
  • Establish a national Chief Communications and Marketing Officer.
  • Leverage High Adventure bases in overall marketing communications strategy.
  • Create a membership executive position within councils focused on growth and paid on performance.

Others have stated:

  • If you want to market to kids, you have to go to where the kids are
  • The problem with social media is that so many adults are out of touch and have no idea about the platforms that the kids use
  • I don’t think anyone has ever been aware of us via social media,

How Teenagers Consume Media

Numbers in parenthesis indicates most used app among teens.

Alphabet Inc.

Facebook - wiki - boyscoutsofamerica

TikTok - wiki
(3) Snapchat - wiki
Crunchyroll - wiki

The latest teen social media statistics

socialmediausage

Marketing must be directed to both parents and youth.
How to Advertise on Instagram
Snapchat Advertising 101
YouTube ads
Facebook ads

Note: the Googlification of the classroom
Note: Chinese owned TikTok may be banned in the US per Trump
Note: websites are being disappeared
Note: duckduckgo is a no go I use Qwant

This topic bears on the other recommendations that follow:

  • Create a membership executive position within councils focused on growth and paid on performance.
  • Establish a national Chief Communications and Marketing Officer.
  • Consolidate local and national websites into a single unified web platform.

Users should like a post if he/she believe that the recommendation will optimize the BSA for success. This then will provide a metric to be used in implementing changes to the membership fees. The like count is a vote for the recommendation . The more likes indicates the importance of the recommendation .

Target your posts accordingly.

PS:
Using qualtrics to accept input to the Understanding the Churchill Plan and What It Means for Scouting does not improve communication with stakeholders, one of the key areas to be addressed in the plan. Upon submitting a comment, no feedback is provided in nearly real time and no means to discuss the merits of the proposed changes to optimize the BSA for success. Further, no rational for the 26 Proposed RECOMMENDATIONS Being Considered is provided.

The BSA website and pages are not search engine optimized (SEO).
For example when you search for the terms like:

  • teenager development
  • Child development
  • youth development
  • Child development stages
  • youth organizations
  • youth activities
  • youth group ideas
  • youth group outings
  • youth group field trips
  • youth summer camps
  • character building
  • character building activities for students
  • youth leadership programs
  • outdoor adventures
  • youth adventures
  • youth adventure program
  • merit badge subject matter

the 2 million strong BSA is no where to be found neither in the organic results or the ads.

What the BSA needs is an SEO engineer.

An SEO Engineer or SEO Specialist analyzes, reviews and implements changes to websites so they are optimized for search engines. This means maximizing the traffic to a site by improving page rank within search engines.

Simply put “it is the job of the SEO specialist to make your website show up at the top of the search engine results. Ten years ago that job looked a lot different than it does now, and it requires a whole new skill-set from what was needed back then.

The BSA also needs a digital ad designer for google, Facebook, YouTube, and Snapchat.

Users should like a post if he/she believe that the improvement will optimize the BSA for success.

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Some great stuff here! Problem right now is we need BSA Volunteers deputized to do what National Office might have done - due to layoffs, they’re mostly gone, right - and who can do that? There are surely plenty of very talented SEO engineers and web gurus out there that know how to reach youth, my guess is they are not on the National payroll. How to move forward?

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As with most of the Churchill recommendations BSA is going to have to spend money to make money. When national hires a national Chief Communications and Marketing Officer.then he/she will have to make the decisions for both the national marketing and the council marketing strategies.

Not all website programmers are gone as evidenced by the changes to to pages we have seen recently.

The first job of the national Chief Communications and Marketing Officer is to hire an SEO Consultant/team to grow the flow of stable organic traffic to the BSA national and council websites. This can be done when local and national websites are Consolidated into a single unified web platform.

It goes without saying that the national Chief Communications and Marketing Officer must have extensive experience in the digital marketing field.

Growing organic (or unpaid) website traffic is a long lead item and may take months to complete. So a parallel effort to develop a paid ad campaign.which should just take a couple of weeks, is necessary until the organic web traffic is established. The paid ad campaign can be discontinued or continued for certain ads which return the highest click through rate as determined by the analytics.

Does the community support the recommendation of hiring national Chief Communications and Marketing Officer?

Users should like a post if he/she believe that the improvement will optimize the BSA for success.

2 Likes

Regarding the Churchill plan recommendation, “Create a membership executive position within councils focused on growth and paid on performance”

  1. Per the 2019 BSA annual report there are 261 local councils throughout the United States and its territories. Hiring 261 executive positions at $50,000 per year that is $13 million per year not counting benefits and performance bonuses.
  2. The District executive is responsible for extending programs to religious, civic, fraternal, educational, and other community-based organizations through volunteers. (a membership responsibility)
  3. The District executive is responsible for Secure adequate financial support for programs in assigned area. Achieve net income and participation objectives for assigned camps and activities. (a membership responsibility)
  4. The district executive knows his/her territory better than a council executive would know and the district executive will be called upon by the council’s membership executive to meet whatever membership quota that is set.
  5. The district executives within a council collaborate on recruitment events throughout the council. For example I am in receipt of an email announcing "Team 5, which is the group of District Executives that serve SEMO and work out of the Cape Girardeau office, has decided to host a Virtual (Zoom) Joining Fair for perspective families as the start to our Fall Recruitment efforts this year. (a membership responsibility)

Given that:

  • The membership executive is a middle manager position who by the positions nature will not contribute a skill set helpful to the district executives to increase membership
  • The membership executive will obtain bonuses on the back of the district executives which will do all the leg work and cold calling.
  • The district executives will not reap bonuses for increased membership in their district so a membership executive receiving bonuses will be a bone of contention among the district executives.
  • The district executives work collaboratively.
  • If councils are given free rein on the amount of membership bonuses then there is a potential for councils to poach each other councils executives for membership.
  • Some councils may be cash strapped.
  • To obtain new members is a team effort of the council, the district executives and the pack/troop/crew leadership.

Does the community respond in the NEGATIVE for the council membership executive Churchill recommendation but rather provide performance bonuses directly to the district executives for membership growth with in their districts and a council performance membership bonus divided equally to all district executives and a reward to pack/troop/crew for increasing membership. And should the bonus compensation be nationally mandated.

Users should like a post if he/she believe that the the membership responsibility be on the district executive with commensurate performance bonuses will optimize the BSA for success.

PS:
Mike Guzman, tips for recruiting into Scouts BSA Troops

True or not, I don’t know. BSA National Office Furloughs Hundreds of Staff. Link is to Reddit. Why the guy did not start a topic on this forum is unknown.

Ran across this Thinking of Leaving Scouts also on Reddit. Why the guy did not start a topic on this forum is unknown. The guy may not have been a scout at all and is just politicizing even though he says he is not. His course language betrays him.

Who wants to volunteer?

The current Venturing crew officers as described in Crew Officers Orientation course, are:

  • President
  • Administrative Vice President
  • Program Vice President
  • Crew Treasurer
  • Secretary

In this 21st century high technology age I propose a new Venturing crew officer position -

Media Vice President

The Media Vice President would have the following responsibilities:

  • Marketing planner
  • crew photographer and photo editor
  • Videographer
  • Recruitment coordinator
  • Web Content
  • Public Relations
  • Merchandising
  • Copy writer
  • operate the online graphic design platform for creating newsletters, social media posts, flyers, etc.

The obvious benefits of this position are to:

  • Advertise and market the crew to the community, council, and nationally to increase enrollment
  • Provide back links in the web content to the relevant BSA web pages to direct interested people back to BSA national.
  • Document crew adventures which is the basis for reflection and is an excellent recruiting tool.
  • The position offers a place for youth that have a passion in such things.

Users should like this post if he/she believe that a Media Vice President position be added to the Crew officers.

PS:
This was also posted under " Churchill Plan, Are the BSA programs aligned with today’s young people? - Venturing Program improvements"

The video Crew Officers Orientation course should also be revamp per the following post.

Current Troop positions are:

In this 21st century high technology age I propose a new Troop position -

Mediatrician

nb. I coined the word Mediatrician

The Mediatrician would have the following responsibilities:

  • Marketing planner
  • crew photographer and photo editor
  • Videographer
  • Recruitment coordinator
  • Works with Webmaster to produce Web Content
  • Public Relations
  • Merchandising
  • Works with Secretary to produce textual Copy material
  • operate the online graphic design platform for creating newsletters, social media posts, flyers, etc such as Canva or Adobe Spark.

The obvious benefits of this position are to:

  • Advertise and market the troop to the community, council, and nationally to increase enrollment
  • Provide back links in the web content to the relevant BSA web pages to direct interested people back to BSA national.
  • Document and publish troop activities which are an excellent recruiting tools.
  • The position offers a place for youth that have a passion in such things.

This Troop positions document should describe the responsibilities of a Mediatrician position to align Scouts BSA with today’s tech savvy young people.

Today.'s business operations has gone way beyond the duties of a Secretary or Librarian and requires special expertise and is vital to reach today’s youth. Expanding the responsibilities of the Secretary or Librarian is way too much for a single person to handle. IMHO this change is required to promote Scouting BSA to a wider audience.

Users should like this post if he/she believe that a Mediatrician position be added to the Troop Positions.

The a National Chief Communications and Marketing Officer. should review all the videos and make alterations to them per the below.

Currently available BSA videos are like ads. The video Electing New Members - Unit Elections drew the following comments from scouts.

The hyperbole and advertising and promotion at the beginning of the video should be removed. There are three type of videos based on target audience:

  • informative - For consumption by Scouts. These are typically training aids. Like Electing New Members - Unit Elections without the lead in advertising. There are hundreds of exceptional informative videos produced by scouts on YouTube, use them.
  • motivational - For consumption by parents, These provide a vision of what their sons and daughters could be doing. The videos should be highly charged and feature scouts in action as a group. like the 2019 world jamboree (would you look at those smiles and camaraderie)
  • promotional - For consumption by the general public. These are introductions to what scouting is and the facilities available to scouts. Like the Individual Trek Opportunities at Philmont Scout Ranch. Kudos go to the Boy Scouts of America YouTube channel for the excellent promotional videos.

The problem with all the videos is that if a person does not know the keywords they are not easily found by the general public. This is why SEO and digital advertising campaign is essential.

For reference, the OA recently released a new elections video.

1 Like

@CharleyHamilton Would the Scouts still consider this to be an Advertisement??
Nearly 2 minutes of a 5 minute video is not about Elections.

If I understand this video correctly as there is not a description of the information provided
The title should be " Order of the Arrow Candidate Elections Video" don’t you think.

The use of the word unit is confusing.
This is an informational video.

The master of rhetoric himself, Aristotle said:

  1. "Tell them what you are going to tell them,
  2. tell them,
  3. then tell them what you told them."

IMHO Items 1 and 3 were insufficient to get the viewer primed to assimilate the information.

I don’t know that it’s advertising, per se, but in some ways it serves that function. It’s advertising the OA to BSA youth and adults (and peripherally to anyone else who happens across the video on the OA YouTube channel).

I disagree regarding the use of the word unit. These are elections conducted at the unit level, voted on by youth members of the unit, rather than candidacy voted on by members of the OA. The emphasis of the unit roles in the elections is intentional. “OA Candidate” elections would be more vague, IMHO. Candidate for OA membership? Candidate for OA Chapter or Lodge leadership positions?

On a separate note, the ascription of the “tell them three times” rule to Aristotle is somewhat apocryphal. It’s actually either two parts or four parts in, IIRC, On Rhetoric.

2 Likes

@CharleyHamilton I have taken heed to what you said. Thank You

I will email the following to ICE@oa-bsa.org


The Updated Unit Elections Video came up in conversation on the forum “Churchill Plan, Prioritize National BSA strategic communications and marketing and make additional investments in related efforts”.

The Updated Unit Elections Video is left wanting. The video is informational in nature providing necessary training, So should be presented as The master of rhetoric himself, Aristotle, said:

  1. "Tell them what you are going to tell them,
  2. tell them,
  3. then tell them what you told them."

Items 1 and 3 were insufficient to get the viewer primed to assimilate the information.

The title should be “Election of Candidates for Order of the Arrow (OA) membership” to provide keywords for search engines.

The opening remarks should describe what is going to be told. For example:

  1. Introduction to the OA honorary society
  2. Eligibility to become an OA member
  3. Election process and candidate qualifications
  4. What to expect if you have been elected as a Candidate for OA membership

The concluding remarks should describe what has been told. For example:

  1. the OA honorary society whose candidates for membership are elected by Scouts BSA troops, Venturing crews, and Sea scouts.
  2. Your Troop, Crew, Ship elects the candidates for membership based upon their living by the Scout Oath and Law.
  3. Congratulations to the newly elected Candidates for OA membership and do your best in the next steps in your OA candidates journey

The YouTube posting should include the above list of opening remarks and closing remarks with time stamps and links. This is necessary to provide keywords for the search engines and allow viewers to index into the video for just the information he/she needs to review.

If one has a job to do then they must do it right. If the producer is a scout then all we can expect is his best but if the producer is in the business of creating informational videos, in this case his best is not good enough. If the producer is a scout he/she should take heed and learn.

The video producer should not assume anything about the use of the video. A Unit Election team may not be present or may not do their job. The video is on YouTube for the world to see so it is also a recruiting tool and must stand alone. If it is on YouTube it is available for general viewing and represents the BSA.

The word “Unit” is governmentese - jargon held to be characteristic of government officials (BSA bureaucrats).
Jargon is - the technical terminology or characteristic idiom of a special activity or group. (BSA bureaucrats)

The target audience is the 11-17 year olds who barely understand what a Troop is. In their mind they may wonder, Is my patrol a unit? Why force these youth to do mental gymnastics to understand what is being talked about. . At all places in the video “unit” should be replaced by “Troop, Crew, or Ship”. There is a slang definition for the word “unit” which may cause a chuckle or two when used, detracting from the information being presented.

If one uses an acronym then it must be defined preferably at the beginning of the presentation. ie. Order of the Arrow (OA) . In the case of this video always use the full name “Order of the Arrow” and use the acronym in the title because it is a keyword for search engines

These standards must be applied to all informational/training videos produced by the BSA for BSA to be judged a quality and authoritative source reference!

Thank You and Humbly Yours,
David Epps,
BSA Life Scout, BSEE, Captain, Specification writer, US Army Communication Systems Agency (USACSA)

Note, this video is intended to be used by Unit Election teams conducting elections in units… that is, the video as posted online isn’t intended for general viewing.

That said, the video does have a “marketing” bent, but it’s very specific in that it’s marketing what the OA is to Scouts in units who are about to go through the election process.

And in relation to your rhetoric steps, I think the video fits in step 2. A good election team would conduct an election by first noting the goals for the night, then they would show the video, and finally they would conduct the election proper, as noted in the Guide for Elections. Thus, the video is not intended to be a stand-alone marketing tool.

2 Likes

Absolutely. The video is part of a specific process, not meant to stand on its own, nor do I think it should be.

2 Likes

@CharleyHamilton @SageLichtenwalner . Why do you defend the video and video producer? If one has a job to do then they must do it right. If the producer is a scout then all we can expect is his best but if the producer is in the business of creating informational/training videos, in this case his best is not good enough. If the producer is a scout he/she should take heed and learn.

The video producer should not assume anything about the use of the video. A Unit Election team may not be present or may not do their job. The video is on YouTube for the world to see so it is also a recruiting tool and must stand alone. If it is on YouTube it is available for general viewing and represents the BSA.

The word “Unit” is governmentese - jargon held to be characteristic of government officials (BSA bureaucrats).
Jargon is - the technical terminology or characteristic idiom of a special activity or group. (BSA bureaucrats)

The target audience is the 11-17 year olds who barely understand what a Troop is. In their mind they may wonder, Is my patrol a unit? Why force these youth to do the mental gymnastics to understand what is being talked about. . At all places in the video “unit” should be replaced by “Troop, Crew, or Ship”. There is a slang definition for the word “unit” which may cause a chuckle or two when used detracting from the information being presented.

The terms Lodge, Chapter, and section are used in the video but no definition of them is provided. A little bit more information is needed.

If one uses an acronym then it must be defined preferably at the beginning of the presentation. ie. Order of the Arrow (OA) . In the case of this video always use the full name “Order of the Arrow” and use the acronym in the title because it is a keyword for search engines.

These standards must be applied to all informational/training videos produced by the BSA for BSA to be judged a quality and authoritative source reference!

Make BSA great again.

I emailed the letter to ICE@oa-bsa.org

  • This particular video was not designed as a general marketing video for the BSA. It has an entirely different purpose and audience. It is more akin to a video clip used within a training session.
  • The video was produced by youth, youthful, and adult (adviser) volunteers in the OA. Some may have professional skills, but this was not produced by a marketing or video agency.
  • Just because a video is on YouTube, does not mean it was designed for all audiences. Adding a video to YouTube is kinda like saying you have a video ready on VHS tape. Maybe you hope everyone will see it, or maybe you hope just a specific audience will.

There are plenty of other videos on the BSA, Scouting, and Boys’ Life that do a much better job marketing BSA as a whole to various audiences (again, not every video is designed for everyone). Of course, some are better than others.

Videos on the OA channel are produced for a much more specific audience (generally, current OA members), and are produced by very dedicated volunteers that devote their time and passion to this organization.

Could this video be better, sure, everything can. But is this a good example for a general critique on BSA marketing? No.

That said, you can ague that it does fall in the “marketing mix.” And thus it is a good example how different videos need to be produced to match the varying audiences, programs and methods we serve.

1 Like

Maybe you guys don’t like criticism. Is not the Churchill project all about criticizing where BSA is so we can decide where BSA should be going.

It should be! OA is an important facet of youth character building. of Scouts BSA, Venturing, and Sea Scouts. You never let an opportunity to make a sale go to waste! If the video is for BSA/OA internal consumption then don’t post it on YouTube.

Kudos to them all! I Humbly provided a critique.The advisor may take it or leave it. He/she has the position of authority and now has my two cents worth.

If it does not have keywords no one will find it using search engine without the specific title and a general a description of what it is about.

Are you implying that I do not have a passion for BSA and the OA.
I personally want to make BSA great again.
I do this by “Prioritizing the National BSA strategic communications and marketing and make additional investments in related efforts”.

Here is the ranking and competition and other critiques to this video:.

Some of these will eventually get taken care of, I am sure.

Personally I learn more from informational and training videos produced by scouts on their initiative. Maybe BSA should enlist Life scouts working toward their Eagle to produce the desired video for their service project like Alex Miller did and many many others have done.

BSA/OA must get with the 21 century and reach the audience of current scouts and the wanna be scouts and those youth that don’t know anything about scouting. Most all of today’s youth feast on YouTube.

Mike Rowe on the future of boy scouts

@davidEPPS said

And further Scoutshops are only open till 5PM. When a scouting products are in a retail chains then they are available for purchase till 9PM or later.

@WilliamC said

@CraigVoss said

Hard to fit scouts then require a drive to the scout shop, in my case 50 miles, to have my daughters try on their uniforms.

@WilliamC said

Nankin hobby

Users should like this post if he/she believe that BSA should focus on developing relationships with local and national retail chains to sale scouting stuff.

2 Likes

More Resources must be spent on marketing

Marketing, communications and fundraising (which many nonprofits group as a single line item) occupy a certain percentage of the organization’s total budget–usually somewhere between 5 and 15 percent of the total

Program marketing - $9,150,000
Total revenues - $286,185,000

$286,185,000 * 10% = $28,618,500

The BSA and councils need to triple the spending on marketing efforts .