BBYO | AZA & BBG | International Convention | Summer

Back-to-school means back to BBYO.

Around the beginning of each school semester, tens of thousands of Jewish teens from hundreds of communities around the world are going big in their communities for BBYO kickoff events. From boat cruises to end-of-summer pool parties to mega-dances, everyone is celebrating that BBYO is back in action. Kickoffs are AZA and BBG's way of warmly welcoming new classes and members into our Movement. Find kickoff events near you or take the initiative to help plan one for your community.

BBYO Kickoff Highlights

San Francisco, CA | Soiree by the Sea Kickoff

Los Angeles, CA | Castle Park Mini Golf Takeover

Cleveland, OH | Day Club Kickoff on the Pool Deck of FWD Club Downtown

Chicago, IL |  Private Yacht Party on Lake Michigan

West Bloomfield, MI | Color Craze Kickoff

Jurmala, Latvia | Leadership Training Institute and Shabbaton

Ft. Lauderdale, FL | Glow Themed Mega-Dance at Revolution Live

Toronto, ON | Colour Me BBYO at Camp Green Acres

Charlotte, NC | Rock the Block Kickoff

Kansas City, MO | Tailgate and Game at Royals Baseball Stadium

Find Events Near You

Fall Kickoff events are popping up all over the world. Use the link below to search for events in your area. If you don't see an event in your community, keep scrolling down and learn how to plan one!

Find Me at Kickoff

Planning

While a dance or boat party may seem like a simple event, there's actually a lot of thought and strategy that goes into any Kickoff event. We want to think about how we build an experience that is exciting to anyone, accessible, affordable, and that ultimately will get any Jewish teen pumped about being active in AZA and BBG. Walk through the steps below and think through if you are meeting these success objectives or not. A WOW level Kickoff event will follow these steps to a tee.
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If you still have questions after reading through the steps, that's totally cool. Feel free to contact your International S'ganim for programming support or International Morim for recruitment support. Don't worry, we've got your back.

Step 0: Learn

Before you dive into the planning process, be sure to learn what's important to the success of your event. Review the goals and parameters of the initiative you're working toward, and understand key opportunities for innovation to elevate your experience from good to WOW.

Understand Event Goals, Parameters, and Opportunities

  • What is the purpose of this initiative?

  • How can you maximize creativity and innovation in working toward stated goals?

  • How can this effort be layered into your programming calendar to enhance your funnels?

Review Objectives and Define Success

  • What does success look like for this experience (including metrics tied to program engagement, quality, innovation/risk, etc.)?

  • How will achieve that success?

Step 1: Ideate

Once you clearly understand the task at hand, IDEATE together with teen and staff leadership to build a unique experience that will best serve your community's needs within the context of the initiative. Do a community mapping exercise, clarify key responsibilities, and establish ambitious (and attainable!) goals.

Map Your Assets

  • What are the unique opportunities (and challenges) afforded by your community - including people, places, experiences, etc. - and how can you take full advantage of them to elevate your event?

Define Leadership Roles

  • What responsibilities are key to the success of this experience, and how will you divide the work (among specific teens and staff) to define expectations and share the load, while also leveraging individual skills?

Set SMART Goals

  • What specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound goals will enable you achieve your stated objectives to maximize success?

Step 2: Strategize

With a clear vision to guide you, take time to STRATEGIZE everything you'll need to enable success. Solidify basic logistics, design your program budget, seek out partnerships, outline a clear marketing strategy and swag, designs, all while further elevating your program plan to produce a truly 'high res' experience.

Confirm the Basics

  • What are the key Who, What, When, Where and Why components of your event?

  • What program plan will you use to drive progress toward your desired outcomes?

Elevate Your Outline

  • How will you push your event concept beyond the status quo to build an experience that is as inclusive as possible and that will defy all expectations?

Create a Budget

  • How can you get creative to maximize your experience while minimizing dollars required?

  • Where might you apply for additional funding to go above and beyond for your program?

Identify and Engage Target Partners

  • Considering the nature of your event, what local/national organizations can you engage as community, program, and/or brand partners?

  • How can you leverage parents, alumni, and other stakeholders to help?

Develop an Action Plan

  • What steps are required to turn your program idea into a reality?

  • What tasks and support are needed to make that happen, and along what timeline?

Define Your Marketing and Social Media Strategies

  • How will you leverage your network using all available communication channels to promote your event far and wide?

  • Who will own each touchpoint, and along what timeline?

Determine Pre/During/Post Swag Offerings

  • What relevant, sophisticated, and desirable swag will you offer before/during/after your event to surprise and delight your guests?

  • Where are there opportunities to bulk order items to keep costs low?

Step 3: Hustle

Good things come to those who HUSTLE. Use branded templates and an all-in approach to promote your event early and often. Create smart online systems to stramline registration. Dig deeper to recruit more teens across all social circles, and make sure the press (and the Order!) hear about what you have planned.

Prep Marketing Materials

  • How can you leverage (and customize) available promotional items to build major buzz about your event through a variety of digital, print, and live sharing platforms?

Launch Online Registration

  • How will you use BBYO's online registration portal to promote your event and encourage pre-registration for planning purposes?

  • What other fun information could you collect to inform surprise-and-delight opportunities?

Deploy Your Marketing and Social Media Plan

  • How can you activate your recruitment plan in a way that builds real FOMO among your target audience, and what exciting incentives can you offer to encourage hustling toward pre-registration?

Engage the Press

  • How can you pitch the community impact of your event (to elevate BBYO's brand) in a way that will attract local/national media to take note and either attend or cover the experience?

Celebrate Internally

  • What information can you share about your event to help BBYO build a strong global narrative touting the reach and impact of our Movement's most influential programs?

Step 4: Execute

As you gear up for the big day, get ready to EXECUTE. Send out final reminders, walk through the event with your steering committee, prep supplies and swag for distribution, and BBYO-ify your venue. Steward prospects (and members) with intention, and surprise and delight your guests to leave a lasting impression.

Confirm Final Logistics

  • What unanswered questions remain, and how will you address them?

  • How can you use final pre-event reminders and confirmation messages to enhance overall buzz throughout your network?

Prepare the Leadership Team

  • What program moments should be scripted in advance (versus free form), and how should leadership team members plan to handle any issues as they arise?

Transform Your Space

  • How can you use branding and signage, as well as lighting, A/V, risers or other fun seating options, reserved VIP areas, and other venue elements to bring your space to life and enhance its fullness?

Steward Guests from Start to Finish

  • What expectations can you set and systems can you put in place to easily identify prospects (and under-active members) to ensure that all new attendees are well taken care of from the time they arrive to when they leave?

Leave a Lasting Impression

  • What fun surprises, snacks, and/or other program enhancements can you offer to ensure all attendees leave eager for more BBYO?

  • How will you share upcoming event information so everyone knows what's next?

Step 5: Retain

Take advantage of the shared energy and momentum from your event while it's fresh to make sure attendees keep coming back for more. Coordinate an individualized follow-up plan to gather input to inform future programs, say a heartfelt thanks to all involved, and close out the MRIHA model by making the Ask!

Collect Feedback

  • How can you use technology and/or individualized outreach to gather input from prospects and other attendees to help improve your community's WOW programs in the future?

Say Thank You

  • How can you customize available branded templates to personalize your follow-up outreach to all key guest segments (prospects, members, parents, partners, stakeholders, etc.)?

Make the Ask

  • How can you coordinate targeted 'Ask' outreach to invite all prospect attendees to join BBYO in a timely and effective manner?

Branding

Bring your Kickoff event to life through our suite of branding resources. Each item will give you specific instructions on how to deploy the tool in your marketing and social media strategy.

Pre-Event Marketing

You know an event is going to be successful when you see it everywhere. Utilize these tools and templates to get the word out about your event.

Customizable Flyer

Share the details about your event with this customizable flyer template. There are different flyer versions available based on what type of Kickoff event you are running. Hang these flyers at all of your local hang out spots and blast them across your social media channels.
Size: 8.5'x11''

Download

Share Square

Blast this image on all of your social media channels and be sure your friends share it on their personal accounts. Add your event information in the caption of the image.

Download

Cover Photo

Whether you're hosting an evening boat cruise, end-of-summer extravaganza, or a dance at one of the coolest spots in your city make your Facebook event and personal social media profile look sharp with this event cover photo.

Download

Customizable Postcard Invite

Everyone loves getting something in the mail that feels personal. Reach out to your community with this customizable postcard.

Download

Letterhead

Utilize this letterhead when making formal asks to community partners or guests to join your event. If you're an overachiever, you can put all of your official Kickoff program outlines in this document.

Download

Header and Footer

When sending your targeting email blasts to your friends, parents, prospects, and community members pop-in these headers and footers.

Download

Branding

Bring your Kickoff event to life through our suite of branding resources. Each item will give you specific instructions on how to deploy the tool in your marketing and social media strategy.

Pre-Event Marketing

You know an event is going to be successful when you see it everywhere. Utilize these tools and templates to get the word out about your event.

Customizable Flyer

Share the details about your event with this customizable flyer template. There are different flyer versions available based on what type of Kickoff event you are running. Hang these flyers at all of your local hang out spots and blast them across your social media channels.
Size: 8.5'x11''

Download

Share Square

Blast this image on all of your social media channels and be sure your friends share it on their personal accounts. Add your event information in the caption of the image.

Download

Cover Photo

Make your Facebook event and personal social media profile look sharp with this event cover photo.

Download

Letterhead / Header and Footer

Utilize these graphics on your official document and communications when making formal asks to community partners or guests to join your event. If you're an overachiever, you can put all of your official Kickoff program outlines in this document.

Download

#BBYOKickoff

Share all of your Kickoff posts with the hashtag #BBYOKickoff to showcase all of the incredible events happening around the world. Maybe if you're lucky you'll get a shout out from @BBYOInsider.