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Learner Recruitment

Word-of-mouth is the most effective way to recruit learners.  However, there are a lot of other strategies to get the word out:

Share your success. (Success breeds success.)

  • Encourage your learners to tell others about your program.
  • Ask learners, volunteers and supporters to follow you on social media.
  • Share successes on social media, the radio and in the newspaper. 
  • Use your learners’ words to describe programs.

Build name recognition.

  • Visit other community agencies and service providers to build referrals. 
  • Invite a program participant to come with you when you present.
  • Attend local events, so community members learn about your agency. 
  • Ask partners to link to your website.
  • Promise only what you can deliver.

Invite people to see your space.

  • Invite community members to see your programs in action.
  • Host an event (a book giveaway, health workshop, etc.).

Plan for ongoing recruitment.

  • Distribute flyers throughout the community.
  • Follow up with anyone who expresses an interest in the program. 
  • Assign a staff or volunteer to recruitment activities. 

Evaluate your recruitment efforts.

  • Ask learners how they learned about your agency; track their answers.

“Recruitment and Retention of Students for Literacy Programs” from the NCFL Comprehensive Recruitment and Retention Toolkit.