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Girl Scouts' The Future Is Now


The Future is Now was a part of a three-month national grassroots campaign commissioned by Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) to assist Girl Scouts of Southeastern Michigan (GSSEM) and 24 other Girl Scout councils nationwide in retaining and attracting new members and volunteers, as well as increase public awareness of the Girl Scout benefits.

Van Dyke Horn was engaged to support GSUSA and GSSEM in launching a localized grassroots recruitment and engagement effort to revamp the Girl Scouts’ brand and attract new Girl Scouts and adult volunteers specifically in the Southeast Michigan region.














Van Dyke Horn identified a number of ways to help out GSSEM internally to help their external community relations and campaigns. 

Van Dyke Horn held an impactful two-and-a-half-hour engagement training session for ten recruiters and their director that focused on the many soft skills needed to secure more adult volunteer commitments. Van Dyke Horn created 10, on-brand, lightweight retractable signs for the recruiters to take to events. We also created multiple photo ‘cutouts’ that would encourage engagement and allow girls to see themselves as future Girl Scouts. Designed with photos from GSUSA, each cutout stood at the average height of our target audiences, which encouraged girls to pose with the cutouts and post for social media engagement. GSSEM recruiters found these materials “helpful with drawing visibility and easy for recruiters to set up.”

To help increase turnout at GSSEM’s annual training meetings for adult volunteers, Van Dyke Horn organized after-work social hour meetings for prospective volunteers to appear more welcoming and fun. We hired a professional cocktail mixer to mix unique “mocktails” and serve light desserts at each of the meetings. Current adult volunteers were encouraged to bring a friend not involved with Girl Scouts to expand the reach for more potential volunteers.

To engage families throughout the Metro Detroit area, VDH created thousands of recruitment postcards and hundreds of GSSEM-branded bracelets to hand out to young girls and their families. We also provided fun Girl Scouts-themed Snapchat filters and informative Facebook ads, geo-targeting female social media users in the Metro Detroit area, directing them to GSSEM’s “Join” web page.

In addition to supporting GSSEM recruitment’s greater visibility with Facebook ads and Snapchat filters at significant scale events, Van Dyke Horn developed a “Troop Takeover Tuesdays” social media content creation toolkit. This part of the campaign featured real-life troops in ideal recruitment areas, “taking over” GSSEM’s social media to share their positive Girl Scout experiences while captivating both internal and external audiences. GSSEM was able to use this toolkit with all troop leaders, giving direction on how to review plan details, including troop selection, content creation suggestions and overview of content review and posting. 

GSUSA also celebrated nearly all of our campaign initiatives and considered them “best practices” among the Councils. Following an increase in girl and adult volunteer sign-ups, GSSEM began its continued client partnership with our agency.



Van Dyke Horn’s primary objective was to increase brand visibility and the number of GSSEM members and volunteers by using grassroots strategies achievable within the campaign’s concentrated timeframe and budget that best served GSSEM’s highest priority needs. We developed a strategy to address the following goals:

Increase new girl enrollments and adult volunteers through new and engaging marketing materials and soft-skills training for staff.
Improve recruiter engagement and connections with girls and their caregivers through mandatory, yet compelling kick-off meetings.
Increase GSSEM visibility through significant, girl-friendly events for recruitment efforts and improving internal and external social media engagement.