Genealogy Wise

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Looking for Suggestions or Creative ways to Encourage more Participants in DNA testing


I Run 4 DNA projects at FTDNA and 3 at and I have tried several different ways to Promote these different Surname Projects from Posting messages all over different message boards, sending e-mails to People Researching these Surnames thru the Connection Service on and through the Rootsweb Surname Registry to Contacting different Historical Societies and asking them to post a message in their Monthly newsletters.

I would like to hear from others about how they might encourage people to participate? Any Suggestions??

Thank You


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Hi Wendy

It would be a good idea for you to join the ISOGG admins mailing list:

You would then be able to compare notes with all the other DNA project admins. You have to be a member of ISOGG to join the list but membership is free and you get a nice free monthly newsletter:

I've found that a lot of the people I need to test aren't necessarily doing any family history research so you have to do the forward genealogy and identify the potential candidates. This is easier with the UK records where all the BMD indexes are online up to 2005. I've found it also helps to have an online presence. I have a blog, and I'm also a member of the Guild of One-Name Studies ( People tend to contact me for genealogical queries and then once I've got to know them I can ask them to participate in the DNA project. Other people have had success by sending out mailings by post after getting names and addresses from the electoral register for the countries of interest.

Thanks for the suggestions, I have already joined ISOGG but not the Yahoo Group.

I have started adding Money to all of my Surname project Group funds and trying to encourage others to donate also, that way we can ask people to Participate and help offset the costs, especially in cases where a person is not necessarily into Research.

I will also lookinto the Guild of One name studies!!

Thanks Again, I appreciate the advice!!
I aggree with Wendy, online presence is a must - blog, website, twitter and whatnot, etc, etc. Apart from that, you could drop a subtle hint about DNA to folks in genealogical emails you send off.

Best not to be to pushy, and to be patient but have it on the web/emails.

Send out 100 letters (snail mail) to folks and (look in phone book for all surnames that your researching and snail mail them all) inform them of your ancestry research and also mention that your looking for DNA participants. (thats what i'll be doing next time i write my big batch of letters).



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