Unless you’ve been living under a rock these past few weeks, you’ve probably heard about the feud between Drake & Meek Mill. You are most likely also aware that Meek Mill failed miserably in his attempt to go head-to-head and embarrass Drake. This attempt lead to hundreds of memes poking fun of the rapper, a shift in his fanbase, and a moment in hip-hop history that will dampen the artist’s reputation forever.
Two-thirds of you probably read the above paragraph and thought, “Why is he writing about rappers on a blog about Fraternity?” Well, I believe that Meek Mill’s failure stemmed from a lot of the same mistakes our chapter’s make when recruiting. So before we begin here is my forewarning -
You might be offended. I’m going 0 to 100 real quick on this blog (forgive me for that corny pun). If you see something in this list that your chapter is doing, then make an effort to fix it. Fraternity is transformative - if you are doing the same today as you were yesterday, you’re doing fraternity wrong. Not all chapters are doing it wrong, but if you think this applies to you it's not too late to change.
So now, the moment we’ve all been waiting for….
5 Ways You’re Recruiting Like Meek Mill Raps
You’re lacking in authenticity
I see so many chapters creating graphics for different “marketing campaigns” that they have focused around recruitment. These graphics are used for t-shirts, social media pages, and personal profiles. I see “Rush Sigma Pi” plastered over whatever super-frat, southern-traditional brand that has fooled you into believing you can’t be called a fraternity man unless you wear their clothing. The adapted liquor bottle label, the movie poster ad, or my all time favorite to poke fun of: the “all men were created equal until XXXX year when our fraternity was founded and changed the world thereonafter.” Newsflash - none of these thing accurately represent your organization. What about a shirt that actually spells out your values based on the service you provide to your campus and community?
Beach themed rush in landlocked state. COOL.
You forgot about your audience
How you’re recruiting is going to be a huge indicator on who your new member class is going to be. Rush parties will get you guys who just want to party. Service and philanthropies will get you guys who want to participate in philanthropies and community service projects. Pizza...well pizza will probably get you this guy.
Stay away from pizza being the only thing you are “selling”. Having food at an event is great, but should not be the only reason people are attending. Nobody wants the guy who shows up only for pizza. Be strategic on what you want the identity of your chapter to be and cater your events, and more importantly, conversations, to creating that identity.
You’re focusing too much on the battle
Everybody get’s so concerned on what everybody else is doing when it comes to fraternity recruitment. “Phi Delt is having this event so we need to do something bigger and better to make sure we blow them out of the water,” is the wrong mindset to have. Each organization is looking for men who embodies the values of the that respective chapter. Don’t focus on having the best recruitment on your campus, focus on having the best recruitment for your chapter. In the end, it comes down to what you’re doing as an organization to grow in the right direction.
You’re bragging about the wrong things
In his newly released diss track, Meek Mill bragged about his platinum watches and cars while calling Drake out for only having platinum selling records.
Your big house, wild socials, crazy parties, and great relationships with the “top” sororities are Meek’s watches, while the other guys on campus have awards and recognition from the campus. What has more credibility when you run into those that say “Fraternities aren’t relevant anymore?” Focus on what’s important to sell when you’re talking about your chapter specifically. Bragging about face-value nonsense gets you those empathetic members who only want to party, but when it comes to actual work they do nothing but complain
You’re freestyling and not planning
Meek Mill relied on the fact that he started as one of the best freestylers in Philadelphia during the whole debacle, but in the end, it was Drake’s researched and planned out rhymes that brought him the title of this year’s rap war. In an effort to not repeat what Meek did, I urge you to not rely on what’s worked for you in the past. The demographic of students entering college and the environment surrounding you is changing, while the chapters in your community are adapting. Be strategic and plan every step of your recruitment process. Learn who your potential new members are and what they want to see out of a fraternity. It’s time to step up to the plate and grow your organization with the right people.