Corps turns to Web to ‘recruit’ parents
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  1. #1

    Exclamation Corps turns to Web to ‘recruit’ parents

    November 13, 2006
    Corps turns to Web to ‘recruit’ parents

    By John Hoellwarth
    Staff writer

    Using the Internet to sell the Corps to the parents of potential recruits will work for the same reason selling cars online does — it’s a lot more comfortable for parents to do the research at their own pace than to have a Marine recruiter in their living room feeding information to them. At least that’s what Marine Corps Recruiting Command is banking on.

    Enter, a nod to the growing trend of potential recruits who value the input of parents, teachers and counselors when considering signing up, said Recruiting Command spokesman Master Sgt. James Edwards.

    “Today, young men and women are really listening to their parents, and parents are playing a bigger role in their decision-making process,” he said.

    Recruiters have been asking Recruiting Command to help them engage parents for a while, Edwards said. It’s one thing to give a pamphlet to an enlistee’s parents. But giving them point-and-click access to every facet of the Corps is something else, recruiters said.

    “If you’ve got a tri-fold pamphlet with information on it, that’s great, but things change so rapidly and this Web site changes with them,” said Staff Sgt. Rene Dervaes, a recruiter in Anchorage, Alaska. “I’ve sent quite a few parents there. I’ll mention it, even if I think it’s not something they’ll use or need. It does definitely save us some time.”

    The Corps’ longtime advertising ally, J. Walter Thompson, designed the site to include information about anything a parent might think to ask, a few things they wouldn’t and a forum where parents can “connect and share” with one another. There are frequently asked questions, real-time updates of what units are where and, most important, enough factual evidence to dispel the rumors that make recruiters’ lives difficult, Dervaes said.

    “We have a lot of anti-military stuff floating around the schools lately, so we’ve got obstacles and this Web site is one of the things that helps us overcome them,” he said. “I think that for those parents who’ve used it, it’s a great source because they’ll see that there’s no BS.”

    The site gives parents the option of requesting even more information if they feel they want something they can hold. Recruiting Command spokesman Maj. Wes Hayes said 7,800 of these requests have been received so far, resulting in an equal number of parent-specific DVDs being placed in the Corps’ outgoing mail.

    Recruiting Command has set aside $460,000 this fiscal year for the maintenance and administration of the site and two others, one for potential enlistees and one for potential officers, Hayes said. He was unable to say how much the Corps had spent on each site individually, but Dervaes said it was money well spent.

    “It’s a good piece of gear,” he said.

    It’s also one of several course corrections to Recruiting Command’s pitch this year.

    In April, the Corps posted its own page on the popular social networking site And at the end of this year, the command plans to end its relationship with NASCAR.

    “The choice to join the Corps is a complex decision, and we feel you can’t convey that on the hood of a car,” said Lt. Col. Mike Zeliff, the command’s assistant chief of staff for advertising.


    Last edited by thedrifter; 01-03-07 at 07:16 AM.
    Vietnam 1968/69
    Once a Marine...Always a Marine

  2. #2
    I remember a story about some pilots who were taking Adderall to "stay alert" and ended up crashing. Not sure if they were Marines or some other arm of the military.

    My son also was diagnosed as ADHD as a young teenager, but seemed to grow out of the symptoms and no longer takes the meds. I think the meds are part of the problem with judgment, though the pharmaceutical companies would deny that.

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