A member of the Chamber of Commerce Professionals group on Facebook recently asked how other chambers raise money to cover operating costs. Her board doesn’t want to raise dues so she’s looking for non-dues revenue options. The chamber pros had many creative answers.
Chamber Non-Dues Revenue Ideas for the New Year
If you’re looking for new chamber non-dues revenue ideas here are some of that the chamber pros shared that work at their chambers:
- State of the City event with the mayor
- Mayor’s breakfast
- Business excellence awards — nominees often buy tables
- Golf invitational
- Annual dinner
- Casino night
- Sidewalk sale
- Festival of Trees
- Yuletide Decor Live Auction — the chamber buys wreaths and other Christmas decor and the businesses decorate them. One chamber pro shared that they added a wine and cheese tasting to the event last year and it was well received.
- Raffle ticket sales
- Harlem Ambassadors basketball team game
Barbie Killion from the Conrad Chamber of Commerce suggested trying something she does with another organization — a Karaoke Contest. She explains it is a time commitment but… “bi-weekly we held a contest, $10 participation fee, 3 judges, audience votes with dollars! Then on week 8 or so we have finals. Also, those going to finals can raise “votes” and bring that money in to go towards the final night votes! We had to move this to a bigger venue as we outgrew our original spot after the first year! There were people outside filling the sidewalks. We also sell reserved tables for our finals.”
Laura Budd shared that her chamber does fundraisers that appeal to different demographic groups. For instance, their golf outing draws money from one demographic of their membership (mainly independent professionals like doctors and lawyers) while the sidewalk sale appeals to retail.
What does your chamber do for non-dues revenue? What are your most popular activities with the best return for the least resources? Share them with the group here.
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