I got a call from a parent yesterday. She’s never sent her son to an overnight camp before, and heard about NaCoMe from a friend. I spent about 15 minutes on the phone with her answering her questions about activities and specifics of camp, but it was clear that she already had positive feelings about NaCoMe from the start. And that’s half the battle.
A recent survey highlighted that more than half of all consumers trust other people’s opinions more than a company’s website or product label. The premise makes sense; we (the NaCoMe staff) are obviously biased about the ministry of NaCoMe and the benefits of a camp or retreat experience here versus somewhere else. We do have some convincing numbers on our side from last summer, like the fact that 100% of campers made new friendships at camp, 95% felt closer to God at camp, and 96% planned to grow closer to God at home because of camp. But still, people are aware of our inherent bias, so hearing from us isn’t nearly as powerful as hearing it from someone who has sent their kids or who has come themselves.
More than 80% of new campers are from referrals by current or previous campers, which is why we have a referral incentive program. It’s our way of appreciating the families that spread the word about NaCoMe, because it’s important.
NaCoMe has been a camp for more than 75 years, and while this milestone can’t be credited to one element, it’s clear that the community of support for NaCoMe is a driving force behind its success. So how can you best support NaCoMe? Tell others about our ministry. Share what kind of impact NaCoMe has had on your life, the lives of your children, and your family. Sharing that story is far more powerful than anything we can say.