Why You Need A Local Chamber of Commerce Membership
Posted by JAMES PESTA
9 January, 2016
We live in a world where results are just a click away, relationships begin without a single face-to-face interaction and millions of people can learn about your business with one query. Business success that used to take years to achieve is increasingly more attainable with the digital resources to which we’ve become accustomed,. When thinking about the best ways to grow your professional network, traditional methods may not be top of mind, but your local chamber of commerce is a gold mine of professional resources that can help grow your business. The best part is, it’s fueled by the human connections that are irreplaceable by screens and clicks.
Rapid Capital Funding has put together some pros and cons for becoming a full-fledged member of your area’s chamber of commerce.
Networking possibilities. A chamber of commerce is filled with other local business people that you can learn from, and even get business from. These folks can help you better understand your local market and even let you learn from their mistakes. It is the perfect place to make new connections based on your and your customers’ needs. Chamber members are more apt to refer their fellow members over non-members.
Fees. For small business owners, every dollar counts, as with any investment of funds, weigh the cost to determine if it’s worthwhile to become a member of your local chamber..The price range can be between $300 on the low end, up to $1,000 on the higher end. Budgeting the fees into your annual marketing or advertising spend may be the best choice.
Visibility. Being a member of a chamber can increase positive perception of your small business among the community. Membership will also increase your visibility through the chamber newsletter, e-newsletter, on social media and other direct mail publications that are distributed to your region.
Conflict. At meetings, events and other chamber events there is a possibility that you will come face to face with your direct competition. Even if this feels like a deal breaker, don’t allow your competition to reap the benefits of membership while you’re busy debating its value. .
Discounts. Like many other professional organizations, many chambers offer discounts to their members. Whether it’s a discount on products or services, like your wireless phone bill, or coupons for other local businesses, the use of relevant discounts could off-set the cost of the yearly, or monthly, chamber membership fees.
ROI is not a guarantee. Much of the payoff of a chamber of commerce membership depends on how aggressively you end up networking or making connections. If you are unsure about making the commitment, inquire with member services about attending a meeting as a guest
Traditional networking resources, like professional memberships can provide substantial benefits for your business. Consider blending options like a chamber of commerce membership with your digital efforts and make the most of the personal connections you can make in the process.