Music, Art & Drama MAD Society
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App Selection & Management for Your Club

creating amazing mad societies Jan 18, 2024

I’ll be providing you with advice based on how I run my MAD app, but all this could be applied to emailing, texting, using something like Voxer, the important thing about communicating with your MAD is that you need to be YOU. What I mean is that you need to use the communication method you are most comfortable with, and the guardians need to adapt to what works best for you so you can be the best leader you can be.  This is difficult, especially since most people are part of at least 5 different groups and they probably all communicate differently.  

Whatever form of communication or app you choose to use, become an expert at it.  I do this by watching youtube videos on how to use that particular technology.  This way you know what you are doing and use it to its fullest potential.  So for my MAD Society, when I chose to use the BAND App (for which I have no affiliation with) I watched YouTube Videos about the app.

Advice for picking an app:

Before picking an app for your club, what are your most important needs that will need to be met, and what are the best apps?


-ticket sale capabilities

-detailed calendar

-forms that need to be shared and filled out



-scheduled posting options

-volunteer sign ups

-birthday recognition

-photo or video posting and sharing


I love BAND in particular because I can see who saw a post.  If someone is not checking my app I either just let them miss events, or if something is very important I will send them a message saying that I can tell they haven’t checked my post yet, so I sent it to them via text but remind them to do a better job checking the app.  It’s very important to let students miss events so their parents respect the fact that if they are joining mad society, they can’t expect the coach to hold their hand.

Make sure you pick an app that can have more than one admin so others can help you.  Make sure there are no ads on the app you pick and it’s a completely private group without internet access. I watched YouTube videos about the Band App to help me navigate and use the app to its full potential. Your app choice is important, as you need to protect the integrity of MAD and purity of your students and guardians. 

Advice for setting up the app:

All guardians (and students who are old enough) need to be on the app with separate profiles, use their real first and last names, a current photo of themselves zoomed in to a nice headshot and not have anyone else in the photo with them so everyone can learn names and faces faster. 

At the Guardian/Student Meeting (or video to replace the meeting) for each session, explain the app in detail. Help guardians and members sign up at that meeting, or send them a video showing them how. Having guardians and members that are good at using the app will make a much more successful Society.

There is a complete list of Documents that need uploaded before each MAD Session and before each show in each of the (show) Process For Coach & Wingman* in your MAD Handbook.

When something is important, I ask everyone to give me an emoji thumbs up so I know they read what I posted. I try not to ask this too often so I’m taken seriously when I do.  I also make sure that from time to time I tell students and guardians that they will not know what’s happening if they don’t check the app.  Do not hound people to be good participants.  Let them naturally miss out on things if they are not participating in staying up to date with what’s going on in MAD.  Let their kids miss out on getting parts, attending events, etc.  They will eventually catch on if MAD is important enough to them.  Adults need to learn a lot of the same lessons their kids are hopefully learning in MAD.  It’s ok.  Just keep being Love and don’t try to do “all the things!”

Advice for making a post:

Put your most important information first, just in case someone doesn’t read any further.

I have found that using bullet points or dashes for each subject, put the date and then the event, spaces between subjects is necessary to guide people through your content in a calming visual process.

I like to write out everything I want to say, post the writing but also ma a little video of me saying the same stuff.  Hit the visual and the audio preference people.  This way there is more of a personal side and bonding, and people could listen while they are getting something else done.

It’s fun to make some kind of post from each meeting and event with pictures so guardians and members can save the pictures for themselves, new people can easily see what the club does and is about, and everyone can have a good nostalgic MAD scroll from time to time to remind me why I am doing what I’m doing.

Advice for managing the app:

App management is a MAD “job” simply because the Coach and the Wingman need to have ongoing, healthy communication with each other and the guardians of the MAD students. Each element of MAD is directed at someone, so emailing, texting, sending updates and reminders, RSVP’s reminders, event reminders, paperwork reminders, snack reminders, and much more need to be taken care of.  Get stuff done for MAD as it arises, quickly, so you can close that “brain tab” and move on.

Be sure that both the Coach and the Wingman are administrators on the app (and maybe other adults) and divide the jobs up (calendar posts, creating group chats, posting pictures of the club, monitoring that nothing bad is happening, finances posting, document posting, etc.) and for accountability should an issue come up that need to be addressed and handled properly.  You will need to get new members to join, remove members that officially leave MAD, post events, hound people for RSVP’s, politely move stuff to a group chat that should not be on the main page, etc.

Do not allow the Students or their guardians to post something on the main page of the app without your permission. This is a hard and fast rule so people don't feel overwhelmed when they open the app and are bombarded by images and information that might not be applicable to them.  The important stuff from the MAD leaders should be the only thing on the main page. I created a ‘Shared Opportunities’ chat on our app that parents and students can use to post invites to non-MAD events, sports teams stuff, things like that.  You can create a ‘Birthday Chat’, ‘Finances Chat’, and any other chat that your society would like.  Just keep that opening page free from “extra stuff” so guardians don’t have to scroll to find the most important information. Tell the students that the Coach or Wingman will remove anything on the front page that isn’t pre-approved (and you will be notified as to why and talk about how to post something with permission, or where to post it if it’s not information worthy of the main app page). 

Encourage guardians and students to notify a leader immediately if someone does something on the app that is not appropriate.

Keep some kind of public record of income, expenses and receipts. I take photos of everything I buy and the receipts, post them, list our profits and event expenses, and then show the math involved to come up with the new balance in a public chat on the MAD app. 


~Coach Baldwin

Head to MAD Society Inc

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