A Chambers of Commerce is the most important tourism marketing organization that small rural towns have
Small towns that have an active, valued chamber with a strong presence and some type of visitor center are usually doing better than towns without. Many small town businesses underestimate the value and importance of their chambers of commerce, so for the past month I have been working on a list of things that people can do to support their small town chamber. Things you can do to support your small town chamber so that they can support you.
- Become a member of your chamber – it’s money well spent.
- If you’re already a member, run for the Board
- Enourage other businesses to join.
- Volunteer to help with chamber events.
- Go to meetings.
- Support other chamber members’ businesses and thank them for being part of the chamber.
- Network with other chamber members with complimentary businesses and create a co-op marketing group.
- Take your business needs to your chamber board and ask for them to consider researching or adding services you need. Things like:
- Business skills development workshops at reduced costs
- Group health insurance options
- Event insurance to be used for business group events
- Take your concerns about the chamber directly to the director or chamber president – don’t gossip, it’s damaging to your whole town.
- Offer your skills and expertise to other businesses in town through a presentation for your chamber.
- Link to your chamber’s web site on your own web site.
- Link to other chamber members.
- Hold a chamber mixer at your business.
- Advocate for you chamber at City Council meetings. Keep the chamber on your City Council’s agenda when it comes time to distribute funding.
- Send a letter to the editor in your local newspaper talking up what your chamber does for your town.
- Thank your chamber board often for their service to your town and business community.
- Share your experiences of chamber or community best practices that you have observed working well in other communities.
- Take advantage of those special marketing opportunities the chamber creates.
- Support your chamber’s visitor info and relocation marketing efforts with advertising and by displaying your materials in their office or visitor center.
- Keep your business information updated. When things change, call instead of waiting for someone from the chamber to call you.
- Refer your customers to other chamber members and tell the other businesses that you’re doing it.
- Become a sponsor of one of your chamber sponsored small town events.
- Display your chamber member certificate or sticker prominently in your business.
- Become an extension of your chamber’s visitor information center by keeping current on what to see and do in your town so you can answer visitor questions.
A stronger Chamber means a stronger Madison County! Now's the time to renew your membership or join as a new member. The Madison County Chamber of Commerce is here to help you promote yourself and your business, so give us a call today and see how we can help youThe newsletter is sent via email as a pdf. Here are a few of our recent issues (previously done weekly) available as pdfs: