BY: RACHEL WUMKES
I hear it all the time, a common excuse given by small business owners and the like, for why they don’t think they need to join the chamber: I just don’t think becoming a member is a necessity.
Well, my friends, I’m here to give you five incredible reasons, backed by testimonials from local Chamber members who will concur there are some awesome perks to joining the Chamber of Commerce.
Being a chamber member makes your business more desirable to customers. The Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce has a reputable tradition of excellence in serving the community for the greater good. Who wouldn’t want to be associated with that? This is the one time it’s completely ok to name drop. This will, in turn, increase consumers likelihood to purchase goods or services from your business.
Sarah Nielsen, CFO at First Citizens bank states, “Being actively involved in the Clear Lake Area Chamber is important to First Citizens Bank as it provides us with numerous opportunities to carry out our core values: to serve our communities, expand and strengthen local relationships and hopefully demonstrate our team’s commitment to integrity, excellence, stability and family.”
The Chamber loves to help promote your business. We have a multitude of marketing venues, including our website, social media, community events, and other aspects of advertising. We have a large following on social media, our website, and a weekly events email. We are more than happy to give you exposure for your event, sale, etc. And don’t forget the blog!
Diana Symonds, broker associate at McQuad Agency in Clear Lake agrees. “Being a Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce member builds relationships, community connections and involvement, which is important to my referral-based business model.”
In a nutshell, the Chamber supports member businesses. We also encourage our members to support other chamber member businesses. If you have a need problem or suggestion, we’re here to help. There is also an opportunity to get involved, to have a voice and influence local government on issues that may impact your small business.
Paul Stevenson at Clear Lake Bank & Trust says, “We take great pride in being a Charter Member of the Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce. It’s important for CLB&T to invest in the betterment of our community. Being a member is so much more than just the many benefits to our business; it’s the incredible events, activities, and sense of community created throughout Clear Lake. It’s a great way to engage with people, create new business contacts, and utilize our incredible employees at Clear Lake Bank & Trust for the advancement of Clear Lake.”
Networking is the best way to get to know others in your community, develop partnerships, and support other businesses. If your business is ever in need, you’ll have a community of other businesses to turn to for help
Carrie Tysdahl with American Solutions for Business said it best. “Becoming a member of the Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce provided an awesome opportunity for both professional and social networking. It has also been extremely rewarding to serve on committees for and help facilitate the amazing events that the Clear Lake Chamber hosts – great way to meet people and give back to the community that gives us all so much!”
- Professional Development
The Clear Lake Chamber hosts a slew of events for just this purpose. Their sole purpose is to help you learn or improve upon skills that are essential to running your business. These events, like Quarterly Coffee and Lake Leadership, encompass the full circle benefits of being a chamber member, including all the benefits listed above.
Jennifer Pinkse at One Vision nailed it with this quote. “Whether you are a business with no employees or a nonprofit like ours with hundreds, anyone can enjoy the partnerships and networking available when you join the Clear Lake Chamber. By networking, you get to know others in your community, develop partnerships, and support other businesses. If your business is ever in need, you’ll have a community of business owners to turn to for help. The more you engage, the more you get to know the other community and business leaders that can advocate for your interests, too. One Vision directly benefits from our Clear Lake Chamber membership to increase community awareness, develop professional staff and improve operations.”
Here’s an interesting graphic I’d like to include. It’s s slew of fun facts all about the Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce. This little tidbit of information below is why I, personally, joined the Chamber recently. For my small business, Rachel Smith Books LLC, it’s the perfect opportunity to utilize the Chamber's vast reach to my potential readers.
The chamber’s most fundamental mission is to generate more business activity for the community. We do that by hosting our various events throughout the year in hopes to bring people to our adorable little tourist town and into your stores. We also encourage our year-round residents to shop local, eat local, and support local. Together, we can continue to make Clear Lake the greatest little slice of Heaven in North Iowa!