You’re Out More Than the Cost of Dues If You’re Not Using Your Chamber Membership
It’s obvious to mention that you’re losing money if you’re not using your chamber membership, but it’s more than just being out the membership dues. If you’re not using your membership to its fullest, you are losing potential customers, revenue, and you’re out significant cost savings. Here’s what you’re not taking advantage of:
Member to Member Discounts
These discounts are exclusively offered by members for members. The chamber works with businesses to bring savings to its members with exclusive deals. Depending on your spending, you could recoup a sizable portion of your dues with this program.
Even if you’re not interested in saving money, being a part of this program will also expose your business to members and discounts could bring you new customers that you wouldn’t otherwise have. This not only brings in new revenue on whatever they spend, but they also may tell friends and family and may return to your business in the future.
The Sticker on the Door
If you have a brick and mortar space and a chamber membership, you likely have some sort of physical designation of your membership. In today’s world where “know, like, and trust” is essential to getting more customers, that designation helps you establish trust before the potential customer has any interaction with your business. The same can be done through an icon on your website.
People often view chamber membership in the same light as a listing on the better business bureau. Their confusion can be a boon to our business. No one wants to do business with someone they don’t trust and that designation helps illustrate your dedication to the community, which makes you trustworthy.
The chamber has a local membership directory. This resource is used by citizens, visitors, and those new to town. These lists are smaller than a phone book so you get more exposure. You can upgrade to be featured to get even more views. Your chamber can tell you what their readership or web hits are for their directory but it’s not uncommon for chamber web traffic to be quite large each month because the chambers is widely recognized as the local resource for business.
Being seen by people in a small segmented list, means more customers and you don’t want to miss out on being part of the community list.
Social Media Followers and Connections
The chamber provides its members with exposure on its social media channels. Often the following of these pages is quite large, even in small towns. Being a member means an expanded audience that you don’t have to pay for by buying followers. They’re also more likely to be engaged with you because they are people you know.
If you’re not a member, you’re missing out on this nearly free exposure. Exposure and engagement can bring new customers to your business.
Are you interested in the latest tools to grow your business? Look online. What will that kind of learning cost you? The chamber provides free resources and best practices to its members. It may also provide meeting room space for businesses that don't have dedicated conference room.
Businesses succeed when they grow “smart.” If you want to expand but aren’t quite in the place to move to a larger office, go to that social media conference, or purchase the office equipment, a chamber can fill those gaps for you and still allow you to grow. Or you could continue at the level you are and miss out on that additional revenue.
The chamber can provide you so much for a very small dues payment. But it’s not just the dues payment you’re out when you don’t use the membership to the fullest. It’s all the additional revenue you can generate through participation. Are you willing to throw that away?
Christina R. Green teaches small businesses, chambers, and associations how to connect through content. Her articles have appeared in the Midwest Society of Association Executives’ Magazine, NTEN.org, AssociationTech, and Socialfish. She is a regular blogger at Frankjkenny.com and the Event Manager Blog.
She’s a bookish writer on a quest to bring great storytelling to organizations everywhere.
The Missoula Chamber partners with one of its members to creates a statewide advocacy tool.
The Missoula Area Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with one of its members, DemocracyLab (Mark Frischmuth), have created a FREE statewide advocacy tool for businesses, organizations and citizens of MT. The Missoula Area Chamber of Commerce CEO Kim Latrielle spearheaded the fundraising for the project via all Chambers in the State of MT. This new advocacy tool was financially supported by six Chambers who raised enough money to cover the hard costs to launch.
The new digital engagement tool (linked below) that will enhance all Montanan's "Right to Know" about the upcoming state legislative session. DemocracyLab, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit with a mission to empower people who use technology for public good, is deploying an instance of the Council Data Project for the Montana state legislative session through its Open Montana initiative. This tool will help our members and the general public understand and react quickly to developments in the legislative session by creating a searchable interface for the 9,000+ hours of video that are expected to be produced.
This tool was sponsored by the following Chambers (Missoula, Helena, Big Sky, MT Chamber, Kalispell, Great Falls) and provides every citizen, business, state agency, organization in Montana the following:
Voice for Business
2023 Montana Legislature is fast approaching. The Missoula Area Chamber of Commerce in looking forward to collaborating with the Montana Chamber of Commerce, 70 local Montana chambers and the U.S. Chamber all in support of business.
Look for more information on how Chamber member businesses can be part of this year’s legislative session.
If you need help bringing a legislative concern forward refer to The Chamber blog article "How to Bring Advocacy Issues Forward to the Board." to familiarize yourself with the process.
Check out our Advocacy page for city, county and state engagement links.
Have a Goal: Ask yourself "Why am I going?" and set two outcomes you want to accomplish.
2. Dress to Impress: First impressions mean a lot.
3. Bring Business Cards: Don't waste the opportunity to exchange information - bring more cards than you think you will need.
4. Have a Good Introduction: Make eye contact when you introduce yourself, giving your first and last name and a firm hand shake.
5. Listen then Speak: Engaging someone with questions will get their full attention, then share about yourself.
6. Show Sincerity & Interest: Ask open ended questions about the other person's background and work.
7. Be Clear & Concise: You can always share more later but keep people's attention by giving succinct answers.
8. Take Notes: Use the back of a person's business card to jot down information you want to keep.
9. Follow-Up: After a few days email people you met to build the connections you've made.
INTERNAL REVIEW FORMAT
Any Information and Position paper submitted to the Board of Directors,
should meet the following Guidelines for Action:
1. Does the issue comply with the mission and values of the Chamber?
2. Is the issue business oriented, having an impact on the conduct of business in the Missoula area?
The Missoula Chamber represents the general business community and not specific business or industry interests.
3. Is involvement with the issue cost effective?
The Missoula Chamber may act on an issue if required resources can be justified, and if an obtainable goal may
be reasonably expected.
4. Is involvement with the issue a duplication of effort?
The Missoula Chamber may act on an issue individually or in cooperation with other organizations if it may be
demonstrated that its participation will enhance the efforts but should avoid being duplicative of other organizations or individuals
Advocacy Consideration Timeline:
Government Affairs Committee reviews requests, discusses and makes recommendations for the board of directors monthly. Board of directors discuss at regular meeting and take action if desired. With appropriate time to consider the issue, representatives from both sides of the issue may be invited to attend the board meeting and share with the board.
Send time sensitive advocacy consideration requests to Bob Homer at email@example.com
Government Affairs Committee contacts
Chad Bauer, Republic Services
Steve Clawson, Northwestern Energy
Bob Homer, Missoula Area Chamber of Commerce Chamber
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.
Copyright Missoula Area Chamber of Commerce. All Rights Reserved.
825 E Front St | Missoula, MT 59802
Phone: (406) 543-6623 | firstname.lastname@example.org