As the owner of a small or new retail shop, you work hard and understand the value of money. The reason so many small business owners like you join their local chambers is that it makes business sense. The bottom line is that your membership is one of the most valuable investments you can make in your business.
Building Customer Trust
Gaining customer trust and building a loyal base of regular customers is crucial to business success. The problem is that people won't be able to discover the quality of your services or merchandise until they actually commit to trying them. This is where Chamber of Commerce membership can make a big difference. A study by The Schapiro Group found that over half of potential customers are more likely to think favorably of a business and are more likely to consider buying products or services from that business if that business is a member of the Chamber of Commerce.
Participate in Promotions
It's a truism in business that to make money you need to spend money. In particular, to increase your customer base, you need to spend money on marketing to get the word out about your business. Your chamber membership, dollar for dollar, is one of your best investments in marketing. Most chambers do extensive marketing of their members' businesses including producing brochures and maps of local businesses, supplying marketing materials to visitor's centers, compiling publicly available member directories, and holding various promotional events over the course of the year. Your membership pays for the cost of your business being included in many promotional materials. Even better, if potential customers are searching for local businesses on the web, chamber websites and links will have higher search rankings than you could get just as an individual small business. Chambers also field numerous queries about local businesses and make referrals.
Your local Chamber of Commerce is a cornucopia of business resources. Chambers offer seminars and presentations and host networking events. At these, you not only learn key information about local business issues, but you make invaluable connections with other business owners.
Chambers of Commerce enables businesses to take advantage of the power of numbers in obtaining discounts on business services. Local and national businesses may offer discounts on various products and services to chamber members, or you can work with other businesses in your local chamber to negotiate deals.
Influence with Local Government
Many local government decisions influence your business. Everything from parking to the timing of garbage collection and from snow removal protocols to community policing can impact the way you do business. Your chamber works closely with local government bodies to ensure that officials are aware of the concerns of community businesses and understand how their decisions impact those businesses.
Because You Care
Even though there are many practical reasons to join your local chamber, the most important reason is not just about money but about caring. By joining and staying active in your chamber, you can give back to your community, whether by participating in charitable events, mentoring new business owners, or supporting community beautification or marketing initiatives. Chambers of commerce is not just about commerce; they are also about community.Tweet