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Membership Sales Myth Busting - Who Makes A Good Chamber Membership Rep?

Myths about membership sales abound! Holman Brother Doug was interviewed recently by Brandon Burton on the Chamber Chat podcast, and he set out to dispel the most common crocks circulating in the chamber membership sales arena.

Over the next several weeks, we'll be serving them up in bite-sized portions. If you just can't wait, head to the Chamber Chat Podcast website or your favorite podcast app to listen to the full episode. If you'd rather listen to this nugget than read it, scroll to the bottom of the page for the audiogram.


One of the major myths in chamber membership sales is that you can have your salesperson be an entry-level position.

If revenue is the most significant thing that you need to meet your goals, you need individuals in your membership department that actually have some world experience. They need to have some knowledge of your business community, and just have knowledge in general.

When you hire salespeople as their first job, it makes the goal of driving revenue exponentially more difficult. And that's not a knock on anybody who is young. It's more about experience and being able to have meaningful conversations with prospects. 

Placing so much responsibility for generating your organization's revenue on someone that is brand new to sales or brand new to the industry, is a risk to the chamber's bottom line. And, if you're putting them to work without proper training and a proven sales process in place, you are setting your new hire up for failure. 


Another common myth in the chamber industry is that people who have been in advertising and sales at other organizations are a great fit for the chamber.

We get why you might think that. After all, they deal with so many of the same things like sponsorships and advertising, right? But the truth of the matter is that while these individuals may have a wealth of experience in what we would refer to as transactional sales, their background is not necessarily what a chamber is looking for.

Your major investors are about the big picture. They're about the transformational or aspirational things that lead right back to your mission. You need salespeople who can communicate with the prospects or members that are interested in those aspects of chamber membership.

If your salespeople are employing transactional sales techniques, oftentimes those "big picture" conversations either aren't happening with potential major investors or if they are happening, they are communicating the wrong things.

They may be promoting the value of the sponsorship to drive eyes or attention for a company, or networking, or things that are just not significant enough for a larger company to lean into that conversation. 

Listen in on a snippet of Brandon's interview with Doug...



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