RDO Blog - February 2022

Catch up with all the latest news from RYA East with Regional Development Officer Robbie Bell...

Making the most of the renewal period

As we move towards the new season, most clubs will be in the midst of their renewal period and I am hopeful that, across the region, we will see a high percentage of those newer members returning this year. However, with the easing of Covid-19 restrictions and the ability to participate in leisure activity further afield, we cannot take it for granted that our new members will return without effort on our part. Research has shown that newer members are typically less loyal than those that have been members for longer, so it is important to ensure we cater for their needs and help them to understand the benefits of returning as a member. It’s been good to hear how clubs have developed tactics for encouraging renewals amongst this group, including: Targeted communication addressing the needs of the newer member; tailored activity early in the season such as refresher or confidence-building sessions; enabling the possibility of more flexible payments - from online renewals to membership fees being paid through instalments; provision of new club equipment; additional informal sailing opportunities; and of course ensuring everyone knows exactly what value the club can offer. It’s easy for established members to take for granted what your club does for them and it’s easy for us to assume everyone knows about everything we offer, but it’s simply not the case so please don’t under-estimate the value of letting everyone know why it’s so great to be a member of your club – and tell us what you’re doing, so that we can share this good practice with other clubs too

Development Opportunities

We have been putting together a programme of development opportunities for instructors (both on and off the water), with a comprehensive programme of workshops over the coming weeks (online on Wednesday evenings). This really is the ideal opportunity to be brushing up your skills or planning for the season ahead – so please make the most of these.

Practical courses and online sessions for Instructors can be found here – covering a wide range of topics.

RYA Dinghy Show

The end of the month (26/27 February) also sees the RYA Dinghy & Watersports Show take place, for the first time, at Farnborough International. With a great range of speakers and experts sharing their knowledge, it will get you up to speed on all things dinghy sailing and watersports. You can view the Show Guide here. You can book your tickets here, and don’t forget that there are special rates for RYA members and group visits. 

Club Visits  

Over the coming weeks I am looking to visit more clubs to hear about your initiatives for the coming season, and how we may be able to support you, please do get in touch if you would like to arrange a visit.

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram – to let us know what you’ve been up to and to keep up-to-date with the latest news.

Hope to see you soon,