By Kelly Fanelli


Series Wrap-Up: Supercharge Your Chamber Membership

Friday, December 5, 2014

Kelly Fanelli



This is the ninth and final post in the guest blog series by Kelly Fanelli, the Membership Director at the Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach, Florida.


Growing membership for a Chamber of Commerce is no easy task. There are always obstacles to overcome, whether it’s a struggling economy or a prospect’s busy schedule. There’s the constant balancing act of recruitment vs. renewal. There’s the challenge of where to find prospects, how to ask for referrals, and what value propositions to lead with.

Throughout my 10-year odyssey as a chamber membership director, I have learned a lot about how to be successful at my job. That’s why this blog series has been so important to me—because I’ve been in your shoes, I know what you’re dealing with, and I have advice and best practices that can help you succeed!

When I started this blog series back in September, my goal was to arm you with practical, easy-to-apply knowledge for growing your chamber membership.

In case you missed anything, here’s what we’ve talked about:

2 Tips For Chamber Recruitment And Retention – In this post, I discussed why visibility tools are the most appealing value proposition, plus the importance of engaging a member’s entire staff.

Using Testimonials For Chamber Recruitment And Retention – Learn what types of testimonials you need, how to acquire testimonials, and how to use them to grow your chamber membership.

How To Find Chamber Prospects In Unexpected Places – A ribbon cutting can be a great prospecting opportunity. Companies that put a lot of effort into advertising are also good candidates for a chamber membership—clearly, they value visibility!

How To Close The Sale By Mirroring – Learn how to mirror a prospect by reading their surroundings and their body language.

4 Ways To Shorten The Sales Cycle -  Get the appointment quickly, make sure all decision makers are present, don’t oversell, and know when to walk away.

Balancing Recruitment And Renewals – You can recruit new members all day long, but if you don’t keep them, your Chamber will never grow.

How To Get New Chamber Members Through Referrals – Learn how to ask for specific individuals, use referral forms, and host an Ambassador Happy Hour.

In each of these blog posts, I included some personal tips and tricks for chamber membership, which I called Kelly Fanelli 101s. Now they are all together in one PDF document for you to keep on hand!

Download my Kelly Fanelli 101s


Final Remarks

I hope you have enjoyed reading this series as much as I have enjoyed writing it.  Many of you have said the information has been extremely helpful, and that’s very gratifying.  It’s also given me the opportunity to revisit my own processes for membership recruitment and retention.  I’ve made some changes, tweaked some programming and gotten excellent suggestions from some of you.  In short, it’s been a fun and productive experience!   

Finally, I want to thank you for reading, coming back each week, and participating in the conversation. Those of you who commented made it a richer experience for all of us.

I challenge you to take the ideas I gave you and make them work for your chamber. I urge you to continue exploring and trying new tactics, because there are plenty more out there.

If there is anything I did not cover in this blog series that you would like to discuss, please comment below. I would be happy to answer your questions via email. And who knows, maybe I’ll even be back for another blog post in the future.


Best of luck to you and your Chamber!

Kelly Fanelli
Membership Director
Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches



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