The digital age has undoubtedly changed the way businesses interact with their clients. In an era of social media and digital presence, chambers of commerce may seem to be a bit behind the times—but that’s far from the truth.
Despite the growth of the online world, business organizations like your local chamber of commerce can offer you tangible, real world benefits that you won’t find anywhere else (sorry Facebook). Members often receive numerous perks, much needed exposure, and amazing networking options.
If aren’t sure what the next steps are to push your business ahead, then consider the following reasons why you should join the Mission Chamber of Commerce.
- Develop meaningful relationships
There’s ton of business (and nonbusiness) value in developing relationships with new people. Whether gaining their trust as a friend, associate, or advocate, the relationships you develop when joining a chamber of commerce can offer you benefits that go beyond financial returns. Serving on committees, and working alongside others you might not normally, can help to improve your relationship building skills.
Plus, there’s always the potential to learn something new from another member. Because every company will have its own niche, experience, and set of expertise, you never know what can of valuable information you can pick up just by talking with the right people. Don’t be afraid, get to know you fellow members.
- Public recognition
A study conducted by the Schapiro Group found that when consumers know that a small business is a member of their local chamber of commerce, they are 44% more likely to think favorably of it and 63% more likely to purchase goods or services from the company in the future.
This is awesome news, but sometimes half the battle is getting the public to KNOW that you are part of the chamber. Well, chambers work exceedingly hard to run programs, events, and promotions to give members publicity. Whether online listings, or hard copy newsletters, for this exposure can really push your name to the forefront of public awareness.
- Get in front of potential clients
Being an active member in your chamber of commerce, and participating in committees, can put you in front of ideal clients in non-pitching environments. This level of visibility will give you meaningful face-to-face time and allow you an opportunity to showcase your amazing ideas and contributions to the chamber and local community.
The opportunities chambers provide to spend time with other movers and shakers also helps to keep your business at the top of their minds when they (or someone they know) start looking for a product or service like yours.
- Keep learning
Chambers frequently offer quality trainings and conferences in which they bring in experts to delve into various business topics. These ongoing training and education opportunities can be exceedingly beneficial for small business owners who may not have the budget to attend large national conferences on their own.
Chambers will often provide relevant speakers and guest trainers based on member surveys or ongoing member communications. These conferences are typically free to chamber members and can provide them with meaningful information they may not receive elsewhere.
- Stay in direct contact with other professionals and business owners who may need your services
Chambers are usually involved in professional expos and conventions that take place your community. There’s a good chance that they can offer you booth access at discounted rates, which can put you in the perfect position for networking opportunities.
Joining a chamber will also give you access to mailing lists that you wouldn’t have access to otherwise. This can be especially helpful if your company is primarily business to business, as it’ll give you a direct line to other business owners (leads). Also, by being listed in the directory, other members will also be able to see your business and reach out to you if they are in need of your type of product or service. Because chamber members are likely to reach out to another chamber member before a non-member, you can expect some good prospect to come your way.
- Enjoy free press and great advertising options
Chambers usually publish newsletters that make it out into the community, which provides a great (and free) opportunity to get your name out. Typically, these newsletters will dedicate some pages to members and provide contact information for potential customers. Chambers are always looking for member-related news to share, rather than advertising their own organization, as it offers a win-win situation for both (if a chamber is able to effectively recognize a member it proves they are doing their job).
There also the sponsorship packages and advertising options that can further help to increase your local presence. Sponsoring local community events or taking advantage of advertising opportunities can help startups and small businesses develop a name.
- The ever important community connection
Regardless of how big (or small) you are, it’s important to remember that you are very much a part of the local community. Chambers work very closely with city government and offices that can create policies that directly affect your business. By joining your local chamber, you have the opportunity to add your voice to the discussion, rather than just sitting idly by and allowing decisions to be made.
- And there’s more…
Chambers usually offer member-to-member discounts, and then there’s the benefit of being able to quickly get in touch with another member who might be able to solve your business problems. From dealing with computer problems to photographers and more, you never know when you might need some help.
There’s also the numerous programs and events that can help to build your business up. From award banquets to networking specific events, golf tournaments to city-wide celebrations, you never know who you might meet and how that might help your business take it to the next level.
Want your business to get ahead? Your Greater Mission Chamber of Commerce can help.
Research has shown that a high percentage of small businesses deal with business-to-business services, so joining your local chamber is a great way to increase your visibility, build your credibility, and expand your contacts.
The Greater Mission Chamber of Commerce can get you started on the right path. We’re here to provide you with the confidence, connections, and resources you need—from business tips to building a diverse network—we advocate for you.
Contact us today at (956) 585-2727 to find out how we can help you.