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The 80’s Called And They Want Those Hard-Close Sales Techniques Back

Have you heard? Hard-close sales techniques are so yesterday. Thankfully, selling has evolved. Businesspeople today are savvy and less susceptible to the tactics that sales professionals leaned on in the past.

Honestly, they’ve never been right for chambers of commerce. Chamber members that join under duress are far less likely to enjoy their membership experience; and they typically don’t renew their membership.

And we know that you don’t want that.


It’s not your fault if you’ve been trained to create superficial urgency or use hard-close techniques. But you can learn to do things differently, and you’ll see more success as a result.

So many sales training programs are behind the curve on adapting to a changing sales environment – particularly as it relates to chamber membership. Most devote too much energy to objection handling.

They outline various techniques to quickly counter objections with canned statements designed to keep prospective members off balance.  Some training programs even claim that objections are positive because any protest means that a prospect is engaged.

We strongly disagree. In fact, we think that if you encounter objections after concluding a membership presentation, it is a clear indicator of a breakdown in your recruiting process.


This is why our membership sales solutions approach recruitment differently. We focus on preventing objections, not overcoming them.

What we have found in our decades of working in the chamber industry is that most objections come about when a member representative presents the “solution” prior to building enough value around it in the prospect’s mind.

Most objections are predictable: no time, no budget, need to get approval, and so on. Our recruiting process addresses these issues as part of a two-way recruiting conversation, not a sales pitch.

We coach chamber membership representatives to eliminate objections by asking intelligently designed questions that help uncover each prospect’s specific challenges and aspirations, and then effectively position chamber membership as a solution for the prospect.

The result: most prospects will choose to join when they recognize that the consequences of not resolving their problem(s) is more significant than the price of membership. This method makes the decision easy. And if you do your part to deliver on the solution you promised, retaining that member for the long-term is all but a sure thing.

If you have questions about this technique or other membership recruitment and retention issues, get in touch. We’re easy to talk to, and we want to help.

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