Fall is just about here and school is back in session, which means homecoming is not far off for high schools across the nation.
While these celebrations may look a bit different this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it is still important to maintain strong connections with your alumni. After all, “homecoming” is all about welcoming alumni home, and the way your alumni organization goes about doing so will heavily influence the success of your homecoming events and your ongoing engagement.
With this in mind, below are some tips to help ensure your alumni feel invited to come back and are enthusiastic about paying a visit to their alma mater:
- Start early: Give your alumni plenty of advance notice about all the homecoming activities you have planned. For most schools, homecoming weekend changes every year, so you cannot simply have your alumni block off the same weekend every year. As soon as the dates are set in your district’s calendar, make sure alumni know about them—even if you do not yet have detailed plans in place for specific events.
- Maintain communication: Regularly update alumni about your plans and remind them of the events you’ll have in store for them. Email newsletters are a great way of sending short and simple updates that summarize all the necessary information.
- Personalize invitations: If you really want to go the extra mile and make your alumni feel wanted, you can send out personalized invitations in the mail that ask them return home for the weekend and give them a full overview of the alumni-friendly events that will be happening, including football games, formal gatherings and tailgates.
- Make it family friendly: Alumni who have been out of high school for a while likely have families of their own now. Make sure they know their families are welcome to attend and offer family-friendly events where kids will also have a good time.
- Offer participation opportunities: Your alumni should feel like active participants in the weekend—not just a backdrop because it’s homecoming. Find ways to get them involved in school traditions and help them connect on a deeper level with their alma mater. You can also find ways to honor and recognize alumni who have accomplished great things in their personal or professional lives.
For more tips about how you can make the most out of your Homecoming weekend and give your alumni a reason to keep coming back year after year, contact us at Alumni Nations!