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MEMBERSHIP SELLING AND
SALES MANAGEMENT INSIGHTS

Right Now, It Shouldn’t Be Members-Only

For the past few weeks, we’ve been offering some best practices on how to take care of your members amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. Now that you have some structure and processes in place, we think it’s time to expand your effort beyond your membership.

It’s time to call businesses that are not your members, not to sell, but to extend a helping hand.

We realize that this might be outside of your comfort zone. You may struggle with the idea of providing value to a business that is not a member, but hear us out.

Yes, you are a member-based organization, but your mission is built on the foundation of creating and maintaining a strong local economy. When businesses in your community are struggling, members or not, it threatens your ability to fulfill your mission.

We’re not saying you should give everything away. But, as you are trying to address the challenges that are facing your members and your community right now, it would be a mistake to ignore or withhold assistance from businesses simply because they aren’t chamber members.

RESIST THE URGE TO SELL

Start calling on nonmembers. Make it clear that you are not calling to sell them a membership. Resist the urge to sell. If the opportunity presents itself, it’s ok. But that’s not the purpose of the call. Let them know that you are calling because the chamber wants to do whatever it can to help local businesses weather this storm.

Invite them to access the resources on your website that may be helpful to them during this time. If they have time, have them pull up the website while you are on the phone with them and guide them click-by-click to the pages where the resources are located.

Take time to explain what’s there and how it might be helpful to them. Know enough to be able to answer basic questions. If they have questions you can’t answer, be ready with the contacts they need to get the answers.

Why go to this trouble for a business that’s not a member? Well, right now, it’s just the right thing to do, but you’re also building rapport. That business owner on the other end of the call is going to feel genuinely helped. And that’s a deposit in the bank on the relationship. You’re delivering value while asking for nothing in return, and that’s going to shape and perhaps even change their perception of the chamber.

Give it a try and let us know how it goes. Remember, we’re easy to talk to. Feel free to reach out with any questions you may have.

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