Mailing Lists are vitally important when trying to attract members to your Club or Society. However, you must remember never to give out your members contact details and when you are group e-mailing people, you should always use the Bcc: field, (Blind Carbon Copy) which will send the e-mail without showing everyone’s email addresses. This is part of the Data Protection Act 1998 and now in line with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Act 2018.
Take down people’s contact details at the Welcome Fair – you may only collect names, email addresses and academic details (Course / Year etc.). You don’t need to collect any more than this and the less time it takes for people to sign-up to your Club or Society at the Fair the better! It’s a lot easier if people input their details directly onto a computer (spreadsheet or list), because it avoids spelling mistakes and bad handwriting.
Please remember: if you are using a barcode scanner at the Welcome Fair, you must ask students for consent before scanning their Student ID. Scanning their ID without consent and then sending them your club/society's newsletter is considered a breach of GDPR and will lead to disciplinary action.
Once you have finished at the Fair, create your mailing list from the data you collect. You can set up Contact Groups in Outlook and send out emails to everyone in the group from your society email account (please find information on how to do that in this UCL guide). Do ensure that all members of the group are put into bcc. Alternatively, websites like MailChimp offer mailing-list-management tools for free. You will have insights into statistics and don't have to worry about the bcc. However, emails from mailing-list services occasionally end up getting flagged as spam.
Don’t spam mail the people on your mailing list. Split them into categories like, “just interested”, “member last year”, “keep me up to date”, and tailor the e-mails accordingly. You could also split them up by year group.
One thing you should definitely do is to keep a separate list for those who are actually paid members of your club.