A South Carolina Kiwanis club is having a record-setting year of growth. Their tips could help your club become stronger too.

By Julie Saetre

In February 2024, the Kiwanis Club of Bluffton in South Carolina, U.S., inducted five new members at one time — a club record. Overall, the club has inducted seven individuals in the current Kiwanis year and is now 35 members strong. 

“Bluffton Kiwanis is growing,” says Bill Rickett, club president, “and there’s always room for more.” 

Rickett and Ed Murray, the club’s publicity chair, share what’s working for their club — and what could work for yours: 

  • Take recruiting into the community. Membership Chair Tim Beedle coordinates information tables at club events, providing details about the Kiwanis family and the value of membership in the Bluffton club. Club members also attend volunteer fairs to share the same messages. Look for similar opportunities in your area. 
  • Make the most of social media. “Our club has developed a serious and aggressive self-promotion campaign on Facebook and Nextdoor, with press releases in everything we do,” Rickett says. “Our members share all these posts to their own pages, enabling us to reach untold hundreds of others who live in the area.” Make sure you’re keeping your official club social accounts updated regularly and encourage members to share the good news through their own social media networks. Kiwanis has tools to help
  • Use members’ skills and contacts. A charter club member and past club president works as the social media director for a local TV station, providing both valuable contacts and promotional insight. Chat with your members about their own skills and connections and how they could help the club grow. 
  • Tell people the Kiwanis story. “We do a lot of recruiting by word of mouth,” Murray says. “For example, each of the five new members joined as a result of knowing a current member.”  

Rickett has asked each member to bring in at least one new-member prospect during the current Kiwanis year. “My goal as president is to end my year with 45 members and a new Kiwanis club satellite in a neighboring community that could lead to a chartered club down the road.” 

To help you share your club’s accomplishments in your community — and attract potential members — our PR Tips & Tools guide is packed with information you can start using today.