Setup Guidance for Community Choirs

Tips and handy tricks for choirs with a leadership team
Written by Sharlene Kowk
Updated 11 months ago

This guide is designed to give you a quick crash-course in the capabilities of your Choir Genius site, and a general blue-print for getting your community choir setup. For full information on setting up individual features, please refer to the relevant help article.


Setting up your Site

  • Keep your site in setup mode until you are ready to invite users to login, this ensures no notifications are sent to anyone other than those with the “Admin” role
  • Check your basic site config settings - location, date and time format
  • Does your choir have various ensembles? You will want to add these as “Subgroups”
  • Review the account profiles - is there other information you need to collect? Consider adding a custom profile field. These are a great way to handle extra information specific to your group.
  • Select your default profile privacy settings. Should members be able to see the contact info of other members? Admins can always see profile and contact information.

Adding fellow leadership

  • Review the 4 “admin level” roles: Admin, Manager, Coordinator, Assistant
  • Add your fellow leaders to the site and assign them their relevant roles.


Adding Members

  • Should have the “member” role for the correct level of access
  • Status should be “active”
  • Add their relevant voice part
  • Add their subgroups. These are often defined as groups where the members within them are in contact with each other. This is different from labels, which are only seen by management, so it is used to organize accounts privately. A subgroup might be a smaller ensemble within your choir, and a label might be “donor”.


After upload
Consider customizing your login invitation to provide more context/instructions. This is done under: Settings > Account emails.
Remember, invitation emails will not send while in setup mode



Adding Contacts

  • These accounts should not have a role
  • Their status should be active. Blocked accounts cannot receive email.
  • These accounts will need a label for organization. It might just be “mailing list”, or it might be something like "donor" "patron" or "advertiser"


Accounts without roles can login to your site, but they see a very limited view of just the public dashboard, and the events they have been invited to, or have had added to their calendar. They do not see the members list, nor will they have access to the music area. They will receive notifications from the site for events for which they are invited to RSVP.

Accounts without roles are not sent login invitations or login reminders, but you can manually send them a login invitation, or if they try to access the site, they can request their own password reset.


Communication

Dashboard blocks - they will see this when they first login. A great way to highlight important information. All members see the Member dashboard. Some built-in blocks are user-specific and show content specifically for that user.

Bulletins -a great place for reference information. Functions like a newsletter, or posting a notice to a bulletin board. It’s assignable, so you can have different sets of people see different bulletins. There is an email notification when a bulletin is posted.

Mailing lists - Configurable, and based on the settings on the child’s profile, parents are automatically included. You can allow recipients to reply to the list, or make it so that only certain people can send to a list.

Forms - Assign a form for a user to fill out. The completed form appears on the assignee’s profile for reference.

Notifications - The site will remind people to login, set up their profile, rsvp to events, fill out assigned forms, etc



Add Mailing lists

  • Adding a mailing list for members (default is there, may want per voice part)
    • Decide if members should be allowed to chat with each other, or is this just for management to reach out?
    • Many groups have one for official communication, and then an opt-in “chat” list for members who want to post about life events, or other social topics. An opt-in chat list could be done using a label.
  • Adding a mailing list for contacts - use the label to send to them
    • Use a template to make your contact mailing list a bit “prettier”


Mailing list emails can be sent while in setup mode, so if you create a list and want to test it, please note that it will send to all recipients no matter their role (or lack thereof)



Adding Forms

  • Easily set up forms to collect info, such as photo releases, or waivers needed to join the group.
  • Keep track of who has filled it out, who still needs to
  • View completed forms right on a user’s profile
  • Forms even allow users to upload a file, if you need to collect scanned in signed hardcopies.

Adding Events

  • Add your repeating rehearsal events
    • Add volunteer jobs for setup and takedown if needed
  • Add meetings for your board/management teams
    • Choose if these are visible to all members, or only those invited
  • Add your next show, and sell tickets!       * store

Adding Music

  • Add your songs, with custom categories 
    • Organize by musical style, or perhaps season, or performance package
    • Assign songs to specific subgroups if necessary, or all members
  • Upload your tracks or other learning material
  • Make note of when it was last performed
  • Keep track of library/copyright information to make sure you always have the right number of copies on file.

Setting up the store

  • Choose if the public can access your store.
    • This affects whether or not people need to already be in your system before you launch your site, or if you new people can create an account and purchase a membership, or a ticket
  • Choose if Parents can create accounts for their children when registering.
    • This is likely unnecessary if your choir is primarily adults.
  • What payment methods will you allow?
    • Will you allow cash and cheque payments? Or will it just be limited to online credit card payment collection?
  • Do you need to set a tax rate?
    • You can set a tax rate, but only enable it for certain products. That setting is on each product.
  • Will you need to approve membership purchases? We recommend approving memberships if your choir is auditioned, or if your store is open to the public to register.
    • When a person purchases a membership requiring approval, they will be assigned the “Applicant” role. You can use this role to invite them to an audition event, or to send them email via a mailing list before they become members. 
    • Memberships that require approval will not be charged until the membership is approved by an admin.
    • Upon approval, the role of Member is assigned to the account that the membership is tied to. If the purchase was made by a parent of a singer, then the parent’s account receives the Parent role.
    • The Member and Parent roles grant access to your site, allowing the accounts to see the names of fellow members and any shared contact details - this is why memberships are recommended to be approved if your store is open to the public.



Things to decide when adding products

  • Do you have any mandatory fees that should be applied to purchases? You will want to add those products first, so that you can make them required when purchasing other items. They will probably be a "general" product.
  • Will you be tracking stock of items? This is important if you have limited registrations for your choirs.
    • You can choose to track the stock overall, versus per version of a product. This can be important when adding your products.
  • Will you be offering various payment options, such as Annual, automatic monthly, quarterly, etc? If so, create these as versions of one product, and list each choir as its own membership.
  • Do you need a membership product? Will you be collecting online membership fees from your singers? If so, do you want to approve all of them, or just new singers that sign up? 
  • Verify that you applied tax to any applicable products
  • You can mark items as featured, which will place them at the top of the store with a blue flag.
  • You may want to add a donation product and feature it at checkout.
    • Featuring the item at checkout will ask the user if they want to add it to their cart as part of the checkout process. 
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