One of the nice things about moving into an area years ago was the welcome efforts so many organizations made. Whether it was the local welcome wagon or a next door neighbor, people went out of their way to make you feel a part of things.
Today some chambers are keeping up the tradition of welcoming new people to town through welcome bags. They welcome new neighbors, give businesses the chance to reach people in a positive way (what better way than saying “welcome” and possibly offering a discount or small giveaway?), and provide a source of potential non-dues revenue for the chambers that charge for the privilege of having their goodies included.
What Should You Put in Your Chamber Welcome Bags?
Chamber pros rang in on this question in response to an inquiry on the Chamber of Commerce Professionals group on Facebook. They suggested a:
- visitors guide
- membership directory
- all about town infographic or visual
- member business brochures
- promotional marketing items like chip clips, pens, magnets, ice cream scoops, eye glass cleaner, and so forth
But there’s a lot more than just what goes into the bags. How do people get them and where?
Melissa Barth with the Spearfish Chamber of Commerce uses a string backpack that is paid for by advertisers. She allows member businesses to be included for free but requires the item be a gift, not a brochure.
The Dunn Chamber of Commerce prints “Welcome Home to Dunn” bags and circulates them through the water department.
The Andover Chamber of Commerce partners with the local police department for delivery. This takes the heavy lifting off of the chamber and gives the police a nice PR opportunity.
The Mason Deerfield Chamber also coordinates with local groups. Sherry Taylor said, “…It is a collaborative partnership with our city, our school district, and the chamber. We have a part time person that manages the program and delivers bags to all new homes sold in the school district. The employee is housed as a chamber employee, but the payroll expense is divided among the three entities. We purchase bags that have all three of our logos on them and only allow member businesses to participate. We recoup our expense by charging chamber members a nominal fee of $100/year to participate.”
Want to add what your chamber is doing? Join in on the conversation.