Chamber membership is no longer a prerequisite for a new business. You need to prove value to those considering it. They want a tangible return on investment.
If you can show them value, or more appropriately, value as they see it, you’ll have a very happy chamber member.
But how do you know if you’re giving the potential member something they find value in? Continue reading to find out and realize how you can close more memberships.
Add More Value to Chamber Membership without Breaking Your Budget
With an unlimited budget, it’s easy to woo potential members. But no chamber operates that way. That’s why you have to come up with inexpensive ways to add value for potential members.
Try these ideas:
- Have a conversation. If they know what it is that’s important to them, they’ll generally tell you. Poll existing members and ask potential members what they most need out of the chamber. Then use their answers to brainstorm new ways to meet their wants.
- Teach them what they don’t know. The chamber is a leader in business. You may very well be privy to best practices and efficiency technology that your membership knows nothing about. Don’t let them tell you they don’t “do” something of major importance to how business gets done, like social media or having a website. Show them why these are musts in today’s business environment. You may not feel comfortable telling them how to run their business but you sure can tell them how everyone else is running theirs and the advantage of doing so.
- Be a resource and connector. People once joined the chamber for exclusivity like one joined a country club. Today, inclusivity rules. Chambers are well-suited to connect all the different types of organizations and individuals in a community. But their pull and weight aren’t just to benefit members. This may seem like defeating logic. Then what’s the benefit of joining the chamber if there’s no exclusivity? But by creating an environment that people want to be a part of, you won’t need to work so hard scouting them. They’ll come to you. People want to belong and if they view the chamber as “their type of organization” they’ll willingly be a part of it. But that means telling your story and helping people self-identify with you.
For all of these low-cost ways to show value, you must be seen doing them and invest time in creating a reputation that speaks to them. You cannot simply say we are a resource (although that’s a start). You’ll want to ensure you market telling that story and position yourself as a resource so that others will see it and speak to it.
You’ll be on your way when your story matches what others are saying about you and your value in the community.