Nov 29, 2022 • 5 min read
One of the easiest ways to plan registration for your sports organization is to think about it at the beginning of every new year. While many sports organizations may open registration multiple times throughout the year, it’s always helpful to think about your game plan for the entire year to best target your clients.
Now, depending on what sport or sports you are planning for can change when you will want to open registration, however, this timeline will be a general guide to when you want to start planning registration, building registration, promoting registration, and opening registration.
An expert, also known as Rose Gumz, Director of Customer Success at JustiFi, once told TeamSnap; “I think giving yourself a solid six months where you’re starting to think about next season is is a good way to stay on top of it… A four month lead time if you can stretch it out a little bit more that’s great because that does give you the time to really work through and and double-check the details which are really important with registration.”
Let’s get into it!
What better way to start the new year than to start crafting your registration game plan. At this phase in the game, whether you are fully operating a season at this point, or gearing up for one, it’s a good point to reflect and plot for the year ahead. Even if you are in the swing of a season, you will still want to start thinking about the next year and what kind of registration you will want to open throughout the year. At this phase, do the research, play around with how many teams, leagues, and tournaments you will be attending and draw the framework. At this time you will likely be planning for the spring/summer programs so just think about how far in advance this work takes!
Again, you could very well be in the middle of a season here. But, if you are not, think about the next phase after researching and building the framework as a time to get feedback. What worked well last year? What didn’t? Send out a survey to your families and community and get some data to run with.
By now, you have the framework, the data, and you’ve probably had the time to make some sense of it. About two months into the year is a good time to start building out your registration forms. This is also a good time to think about your marketing strategy for getting the word out about your programs.
Test things out! By now, you are about 4 months out from when you started your planning phase for registration. You’ve collected the data, you’ve received feedback, you’ve considered a marketing strategy so now test things out! This could mean just playing around with the registration forms, or if you are ahead of the game and already have them built, have personnel in your sports organization test them out. Learn more about the online registration feature.
Try out things again and even consider holding a “mock season.” This will help you know if the processing and fees are running smooth and how you want and also identify any holes in your forms. Around this time you will also want to gear up for launching registration online. Double-check your website looks good, your social channels are ready to go, and any email or newsletter marketing is prepared. If your website needs a glow-up, have no fear TeamSnap can actually help you build a shining website in just 7 simple steps.
It’s go time! All the ducks should be in a row and at this point you only need a week with TeamSnap for Clubs & Leagues to fully launch registration. Watch our on-demand recording for an introduction and tour of TeamSnap for Clubs & Leagues Registration. You’ll hear our panelists discuss best practices for registration building along with a demo of how to launch online registration with ease using our self-serve form builder.
How’d everything turn out? It’s possible your registration is still open at this time. If there are any more opportunities to promote and market the programs coming up now is the time. Remind your clients about what is coming and start sifting through the registration forms to see how the teams will shape up.
It’s possible around this period that the season is now operating! Coaches have a hold of their teams and families have all bought in to the service. That only means one thing though, once one is running it’s probably time to start thinking about a new season!
For sports organizations that are operating three seasons, you may have to be tighter in your planning and operating timeline. If you begin planning for fall season in the spring, come summer you will need to begin planning for winter, and come fall season you will need to start planning for spring! It’s circuitous and once you find a rhythm that works and gives you and your staff ample time to plan, digest, test and drive, you will be golden!