Recruiting is always a difficult thing, and the first time I ever tabled, I was so nervous I sat down behind my table for about 2 hours and got a grand total of 3 sign ups.
The absolute best thing to do while tabling, from personal experience, is to get out there and talk to people. I go to Western Washington University. The university that banned plastic water bottles, requested a state Senator to resign due to his stance on climate change (not denying it, but being a climate agnostic. I should also add this was the students of WWU, not the administration), and where a student tied themselves for several hours to a boat in Bellingham harbor to make a statement about oil use, and the evil oil corporations.
I convinced around 40 people that the liberty movement was for them. During my club fair of two days, 5 hours each day, I got 40 people so sign up. This was a great improvement from my 3 sign ups for the previous year. Granted this was my first year at a club fair, but still.
YAL has an enormous potential to reach those on the left side of the political spectrum. While we all know that we have a lot of friends on the right side of the isle, reaching the left can be difficult. So here is what I did:
First, I gathered all my resources the night before. They included Cato letters, Peace, Love and Liberty books, YAL constitutions, some handouts from Turning Point USA, etc. I organized them into places that would show that YAL has a "libertarian" drawing. I placed certain items that appealed to conservatives on one part of my table, and certain items that appealed to liberals on the other side. I would use my body to have the person I was talking to adjust to the side which they preferred (using the YAL political test) and would talk to them about the issues they were passionate about.
Before I talked about my personal standings, or what YAL even does, I would offer them resources. I placed them in their hands, and then started to explain my club. This seemed to work extremely well. Another thing that is important to do is to let them do a lot of the talking, at first. Let them tell you about inequality, social justice, the war on drugs. Offer them resources to expand their education on the issue, one that makes them feel like they are taking their own initiative on their political education. You become the medium for advancing their education for a short period of time.
But be careful not to let them talk over you. Let them speak, do not interrupt them and once it is your turn, hand them a resource and talk about YAL. Talk about your personal beliefs and how it connected you to a great organization like YAL that does activism on the things that you are passionate about. But do not let it get into a debate. This happened to me several times, and it distracts from recruiting other members. There is however a time and place to do that, and a debate is an event that my chapter is co-hosting with our Students for Life group.
I spoke with several members of our biggest political club on campus, Socialist Alternative. We are going to work together with SA on our incarceration nation event. Plan to do events with your political rivals, so long as you stick to the topic you agree on. This is fantastic publicity. I also spoke with a member of our Black Student Union on militarization of the police.
After seeing her shirt that read "de-militarize the police" I immediately handed her a copy of "the militarization of the police" which was a Cato Letter. I informed her of YAL's purpose and role in campus activism. She expressed strong interest in supporting our Incarceration Nation event. So there are two groups, that I have teamed up with. Socialist Alternative being the complete opposite, and the BSU which has a broad range on campus.
Reach out to those groups you disagree with. Find common ground, and plan events. And remember to not be afraid to be disagreed with. There are many core issues that YAL does activism on, so choose from the infinite possibilities depending on your situation.