Five Tips to Help Local Communities Thrive with Technology in 2014

In 2014, hundreds of cities and community recreation facilities will migrate to ACTIVE Net, the cloud-based software designed to help organizations do more with less.  These forward-looking organizations are using technology to maximize their resources to better manage facilities, develop programs, and keep their community active.

Last fall, in the CIO Review, ACTIVE Network CEO, Darko Dejanovic shared some simple guidelines to help communities find the right technology for their needs in order to continue to better serve their citizens.

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ACTIVE Network Celebrates Customer Successes

COGSIn November 2013, we launched a series of events around the country for “Customer Owner Groups” or COGs. The events are a way to bring together customers of ACTIVE Net and Class products for a day of learning, networking, and collaborating.

Attendees will share best practices, be inspired by new business ideas, and learn the latest tips and tricks for ACTIVE Net and Class. During each event, we celebrate our customer successes with a Customer Excellence Award that recognizes key customers for their work in pioneering the use of new technology within their communities. The COGs series continues into 2014 with events throughout the US and Canada. If you are an ACTIVE Net or Class customer check out the schedule below and register for the next COG event near you!

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How to Drive People Online with Early Bird Registrations

RJC__20130725_Active_SDTech_7724Your organization offers online registration. It’s convenient for your customers and saves you tons of time, but not enough people are using it. So you still have some long lines on registration day and you’re scrambling for ways to get people online. Introducing…early bird registration. With early bird, you can give early access to registration to a certain group. That way, people will be enticed to go online to register before classes open up to everybody else.

If you’re considering offering early bird registration, here is game plan:  Continue reading

How to Fill Your Classes and Programs with Customer Success Stories

Marketing is most successful when praise comes from the customer, not the organization. For example, a bunch of great Yelp reviews are huge for a restaurant just like a friend’s referral is best for a doctor’s office. Parks and recreation agencies and YMCAs put on great programs and classes, and they help lots of people get in shape. That’s a winning formula for marketing!

Now it’s time to gather up those great success stories from your customers and use them in your marketing messages. Here are a few examples to get your creative juices flowing:  Continue reading

Top 7 Technology Trends Your Organization May Be Missing

AU6U3954As we take a look across the industry at all sorts of organizations who serve the members of their communities, we’re noticing certain growing trends. We’d like to share those with you today, as well as stick our necks out to make some predictions about the future based on those trends. Here are the top 7 technology trends you should know about:

1. More mobile
Mobile technology is nothing new, but increasingly online traffic is coming from mobile devices and the trends are moving upward. Technology that started with basic cell phones has evolved into smart phones and iPads and apps. Make sure the community can access your programs while they’re on the go, with a variety of mobile devices, because that is what people are using more and more often. Make sure your programs are mobile accessible!

2. Personalization of websites
When you’re logged in on certain websites, have you noticed that ads or Continue reading

37 Parks & Recreation Goals to Keep in Mind

No matter what field you are in, sometimes your job simply gets in the way of your job. All of the day-to-day tasks or paperwork can blind you from your ultimate goals or mission. It’s the same at a parks and recreation agency. Managing programs, parks, facilities, memberships, child care programs and a lot more takes a ton of time and effort. We work with hundreds of P&R organizations who deal with this balance every day – managing the day-to-day while keeping the mission in mind.

Today is a refresher. For this post, we’ve compiled 37 real goals from tons of parks and recreation agencies across North America (some may sound very familiar). Take a look, incorporate some at your organization, and most of all, make sure you’re not letting your job…get in the way of your job:  Continue reading

15 Campus Recreation Departments Move to the Cloud

Source: utrecsports.org

Source: utrecsports.org

Campus recreation departments run the fitness facilities around campus, offer programs and training sessions, put on intramurals, and a lot more. But behind all that comes a ton of management time for staff members. That’s why we’ve seen a trend in recent years around the campus recreation industry: departments are moving to ‘the cloud’ (also known as Software as a Service) to manage all parts of their business without the IT infrastructure.   Continue reading

Top 70 YMCA Twitter Accounts to Follow (and Imitate)

However you feel about the little Twitter bird, it’s not going away any time soon. Hundreds of millions of users access it everyday for information, and a lot of them could be your members and potential members. They look for news and information that fits their life, and what your YMCA offers should be a part of that mix.

Whether your YMCA has a Twitter account or you’re looking to create one soon, all Y marketers need a few role models. The following 70 North American YMCA accounts are the best and biggest on Twitter. They use Twitter to connect with members, answer questions, make announcements, discuss fitness and health, release registration dates and more. Consider following these accounts to get ideas for your own Twitter strategy. (The list was compiled based on number of followers, content provided, number of tweets, interactions with followers, recent activity and overall use of Twitter to connect with customers. From there, the list was ordered from most followers to least followers.)  Continue reading

4 Ways to Connect at YMCA General Assembly

The anticipation isn’t quite as strong as the Olympics or the World Cup, but it is the YMCA General Assembly. And it only comes around once every 3 years. In about 10 days, we’ll be heading out to Philadelphia for General Assembly and we’re excited to network, learn, and have a little fun. Will you be there?

On top of all the great events and programs, we have a few other ways to connect. Check out a few ways we can meet up at GA:  Continue reading