By Marilyn Axler, a member of the E-Club of South Jersey, and Rotary Global History Fellowship board member
I have been using social media to promote Rotary for three years now, posting on LinkedIn and other platforms to connect with others and share Rotary’s message. From time to time, I hear from members who are uncomfortable with social media. They say they feel it is invasive and they bring up concerns for privacy and safety.
Could it be that they are also afraid to embrace change? I agree the telephone is still the best way to communicate sometimes. But social media is clearly where it is at for younger people. Can we really afford to ignore the “new age of communications?”
I recently participated in Rotary’s Webinar, Membership: It’s Now or Never, where I learned that only a small percentage of our members are under the age of 40. How are we going to reach these younger generations if not through social media? Are we looking to our future?
Each social media platform is different. I like to use LinkedIn because it allows me to connect with other professionals from all over the world. I also use Facebook, Bing, and Google when I can. I have connected with thousands through social media. I learn from Rotaractors and Interactors about their projects, their important celebrations, and their fundraisers. This is their medium, and the reach is limitless.
My point and passion is this: we must prepare out clubs for the future. And we can do this by working with Rotaractors and Interactors, learning to use social media in all its power to promote Rotary. We are doing this in the Rotary Global History Fellowship. We work with Rotaractors who are sharing their ideas with Facebook friends worldwide. And I am so impressed with their enthusiasm for Rotary.
We must mentor our youth to become our leaders of today. And social media is the way to engage them.