Congratulations! Starting a new club is a big undertaking, but it's doable. JCNA is here to help you succeed. Here is a roadmap to help you get started.
STEP 1 - PRELIMINARIES:
- Is a new club appropriate? Go on line to JCNA and check to see where the nearest club(s) is/are in your area. Is the nearest JCNA club more than 100 miles from you? If "Yes", a new club is probably in order.
- Next, consider if there are any Jaguar Dealers in your area:
- Is there a Jaguar Dealer(s) in your area (or within 50 miles of you)? If "Yes", get acquainted with them. They are a potential source for names & addresses of Jaguar owners. At a minimum they should let you display JCNA/club literature in their showroom and parts department.
- If "No", are there any British car repair shops, or at least foreign car shops in your area? Persons who own one kind of sport car may have other marquees at home or at least have interest in them.
STEP 2 - GETTING STARTED:
- Start with your friends, anyone you know who is interested in Jaguars, and any Jaguar cars you see in your area.
- Visit with Jaguar Dealer(s), foreign car shops, etc.
- Contact the JCNA Membership Committee and let us know your intention to start a club.
- We can advise you about JCNA's policies and procedures to become a JCNA affiliate club.
- We can help you find and recruit members.
- Know if/how many, JCNA Members At Large (MALs) there are in your area.
- Recent inquiriesto JCNA for clubs in your region.
- Recruiting materials such as the JCNA New Member Brochure, sample club post card you can leave with prospects, materials you can give Dealers, etc.
STEP 3 - GENERATING INTEREST:
- Check the JCNA website for scheduled events. You may have to go more than 100 miles to attend an event, but it could be worth the trip. You will find Jaguar enthusiasts as well as participants there. Some may be from your area and would love to have a new local club to join.
- Hand-Outs. Go to the JCNA website and get the JCNA brochure ( http://www.jcna.com/shop/index.php?Vcat=JP). Ask us for our JCNA Benefits list. Prepare introductory promotional material of your own -- hand-outs on your club such as business cards, post cards, a flyer, or a brochure (Contact the Membership Committee, we can help you with samples.) Include at a minimum:
- Temporary club name (i.e. "Jaguar Club of Newtown NY")
- Brief description of what your club might offer (i.e. Car/social activities, Forum for your interests, Technical assistance, Resource information,, Networking, Local meetings, Competition, etc.)
- Point of Contact (name, telephone number, email address).
- Note: You will want a club logo, but be aware that Jaguar Land Rover is very protective of its trademarks. Your club must go through JCNA for a legal agreement to use the Jaguar name, cat image, etc. Do not use their trademarks without authorization.
- Promote! -- Talk to people, leave cards or flyers:
- Go to any motor activities in your area -- Cruise Ins, car shows, motorcycle and car racing events. Participate in events if possible.
- Check parking lots for Jaguars at:
- Restaurants, supermarkets, shopping malls
- Cultural events/venues such as symphony, ballet, art museums.
- Sporting events such as horse shows/racing, golf, etc.
- Car Museums
- Country clubs, boat clubs, private airports.
- Announce the start up of your Jaguar car club in local Community Bulletin Boards:
- Penny Saver and/or local newspapers
- Local radio
- Post announcements in local public places:
- Jaguar Dealer(s), car parts stores, foreign auto repair shops
- Car washes
- Supermarkets, shopping malls, etc.
STEP 4 - ORGANIZING YOUR CLUB:
- When you have several interested persons hold an informational meeting to determine if there is sufficient interest to form a club. You will need at least four persons willing to work so you can have temporary officers, i.e. President, VP, Secretary, and Treasurer. Ordinarily JCNA requires 20 members in order to become an affiliate club, although exceptions are sometimes made. Contact us if you have questions about affiliation.
- Make a public announcement of an "information meeting" of the proposed club.
- Meet at a publicplace with good parking for classic cars and a quiet corner or a back room. Consider a "Jags and Java" morning at a coffee shop, or a "Wheels-n-Wine" evening at a watering hole. Do you have access to a Country Club, a Veterans Post, etc.? If you can't find a suitable venue, ask the Jaguar dealer if you can use their place for awhile. After all, you are bringing in potential customers!
- Keep in touch with the JCNA Membership Committee. Together with your Regional Directors we are your liaison with JCNA. We are your resource for information and assistance to find, recruit and retain members. We can help you:
- Get your club up and running
- Grow your club.
- Solve all sorts of your problems. Just ask us -- if we can'thelp you, we'll direct you to the person who can.
STEP 5 - WEBSITE:
- Find a Website Chairperson. This can be the hardest part as finding someone who understands how to set up a website are not in abundance. However you need not have that expertise in-house, there are several firms that specialize in this and can be of assistance. There are several website builders that offer their initial service for free. Here is a short list of some of the highest rated ones:
- Site Builder (free)
- Website Builder.Com (free)
- Sitey ($4.95)
- Squarespace ($8.00)
There are many more listed, just Google "website builder" and many are listed.
Lastly, remember in your dues structure that there will be a monthly maintenance fee that will run from $15/per month or more.
Whether or not you establish an independent website, once your club is approved as an affiliate club by JCNA, you should use the club's page on the JCNA website to introduce your club. The club locator page on JCNA's website goes to your club's page.
STEP 6 - LEGAL CONSIDERATIONS:
Just like after you buy your new Jaguar now you have to get it insured and registered so you can drive it on the road, there are legal requirements you need to do for your new club. The requirements vary from state to state (USA and Mexico) and province (Canada). It is advisable to consult with a lawyer and/or an accountant to assist you. Be aware that even if you are a fledgling club that has a lawyer in it who will do the paperwork pro bono, there are still business fees involved. You will want to have the club up and running and collect dues to at least cover these expenses.
The following information applies to most USA states. It will serve as a roadmap for consulting with your legal authority.
- Visit the JCNA website (jcna.com): Click on INFO and then JCNA Corporate Policies. Once there scroll down to category C-0600-103.2, Membership, New JCNA Club Affiliation Applications. This will provide you with JCNA requirements to establish an affiliate club.
- Settle on a club name. (Needed toestablish the club as a legal entity, see step 2.)
- Incorporate -- usually as a "non profit" or a "not for profit" corporation. The distinction matters, (i.e. tax implications). Incorporation also affects financial liability for the club and its officers. Discuss this with your lawyer so you know your choices and consequences.
- Adopt by-laws and elect officers. You will need these for JCNA affiliation as well as completing your legal requirements. If you need help creating your by-laws contact the JCNA Membership Committee. We can help you.
- Obtain an employer identification number (EIN) from the IRS. This is needed even though the club may not have any employees.
- Open a corporate checking account. You'll need the club's EIN. It's business like. Without a club account you'll have to pay everything on your personal account. This gets complicated when the club officers change.
- Apply for exemption from federal income tax with the IRS, usually as a 501(c)(7) "social club." NOTE: Contributions/donations to a 501(c)(7) organizations are not tax deductible as it is not a "charitable" organization.
- Apply for exemption from state income tax with your state tax authority. Go to your state's website. Most state forms are available on line.
- Apply for exemption from state sales tax with yourstate tax authority. If your state doesn't have sales tax, then you will skip this step.
Don't let the legal stuff stymie you. "Keep Calm, and Carry On."