Alumni associations across the nation tend to be populated by slightly older alumni, who are well past their high school and college years. However, getting involvement from your alumni right after they’re out of high school can prove to be quite beneficial; it’s just a challenge to actually make it happen. After all, many recent graduates are eager to move on with their lives and establish an identity beyond their high school.
So what are some of the ways you can stay relevant with your most recent graduates? Here are a few tips.
- Begin outreach early: Start getting in the ear of students even before they graduate high school. They should be well aware of your organization before they graduate so they already know all the opportunities that lie ahead of them by getting involved.
- Meet them where they are: The way you market to and engage young adults between the ages of 18 and 23 is very different from the way you should be reaching out to adults in middle age and later years. The biggest thing is meeting them where they are. You’re not going to have much success trying to engage them through Facebook, for example--the usership there skews older. Social media platforms to look at for those younger adults include TikTok, Snapchat and Instagram (and even Instagram is starting to skew a little older, more toward Millennials). Make sure your website is highly functional for mobile devices.
- Demonstrate value: The value should go beyond just high school nostalgia. For young people who are just getting started in life, there are all kinds of additional needs they are likely to have. Provide workshops, job boards, networking events, social mixers and various other forms of support. Your initiatives shouldn’t all focus on fundraising, because you simply won’t get much in donorship from this group given where they’re at in their professional lives.
- Make it genuine: Today’s young adults are more sensitive than ever to messaging that comes across as fake. Make interactions as genuine as possible. It helps if you can build relationships with in-person meetings and events.
For more tips, contact us at Alumni Nations!