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MEMBERSHIP SELLING AND
SALES MANAGEMENT INSIGHTS

Are You Selling Or Struggling?

It’s not just you – nor your chamber. We’ve done the call rounds and chamber membership sales and renewal numbers are down across the board.

It’s quite clear that pandemic recovery will be a marathon, not a sprint.

And while membership sales may be hard to come by right now, we are noticing some differences between sales reps who are experiencing some success and those who are struggling to hold on.

It’s coming down to problem solving, process, and patience.

PROBLEM SOLVERS NOT EVENT PLANNERS

With in-person events off the table, reps who have consistently relied on the transactional aspects of membership as the cornerstone of their chamber sales pitch are struggling the most.

Until now, transactional benefits have often been an easier sell to certain types of prospective members. But things have changed. Those benefits are not currently available, and the priorities of prospects have also changed.

Reps who previously “hung their hats” on those benefits are having a difficult time adjusting to the learning curve of approaching prospects differently. We’ve always encouraged chamber sales reps to present chamber membership as a solution to a prospect’s problem. It’s a longer, more difficult road than pushing transactional benefits, but it’s the only one to travel now and into the future.

Presenting your chamber as a solution to a prospect's problem requires the commitment to really get to know every prospect, their business and the challenges they face. It demands that sales reps listen and try to understand each prospect’s situation before making a recommendation on chamber membership. And it some cases, it may mean parting ways with a prospect because they are not a good candidate for membership.

PROCESS BEGETS SUCCESS

The number-one inhibitor to membership sales success is uncertainty. Membership reps and sales leaders aren't always clear on the steps they should take to guide their prospective members through the recruiting process. Consequently, their approach lacks consistency, confidence waivers, and results suffer. That's why all of our training is steeped in process.

COVID or no COVID, established process is the most surefire way to guarantee success. The methodology we use to customize a membership sales process for our chamber clients is built on foundational sales concepts and repetition. This eliminates anxiety and hesitancy because everyone knows what they should be doing, every single day, to generate the most value from their efforts.

It stands to reason that the sales performance of a chamber membership rep or department is considerably better if they don't have to re-invent the wheel for every prospect. And based on what we're seeing with our clients - and discovering from the calls we're making to other chambers across North America - the reps who are actually making sales right now are the ones who have a process, follow it consistently, and trust it implicitly.

Whether you are working with us or not, we implore you to institute a consistent membership sales process - one that every member of your sales team uses, and one that remains in place even as staff changes.

We know a lot of chambers are facing some tough challenges right now in recruiting and retention. If you have questions, or just need a little encouragement, we want to remind you that we’re easy to talk to, and we want to help.

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