Research has shown that consumers are more likely to do business with a company if it’s a member of their local chamber of commerce.
Take that knowledge a bit further and think about what would happen if you joined another local chamber of commerce. You may think that sounds like overkill, but it's quite beneficial – especially if your company does work in more than one community or if you are looking to expand into another community.
We at Ideas in Motion Media have jumped head-first into this notion. We are members of more than one chamber and we have reaped quite a few benefits from each one.
The Duneland Chamber of Commerce welcomed us with open arms. With a deep-rooted involvement in its local communities, the Duneland Chamber has helped us reach so many citizens and discover many great businesses and vice versa.
And the great experiences that members get from the Duneland Chamber all stem from the hard work and dedication put forth by the staff and volunteers within the chamber. Allyson Baughman, Marketing Director for the Duneland Chamber of Commerce, tells of the ideals and values that drive the staff and volunteers to do things the way that they do.
“We deeply care about making life better for our members - no matter where they are, what they do or how much they spend,” Baughman said. “We care because that’s who we are. I’ve personally never worked with a more talented, loving, sincere and committed group of people in my life, and every day around the office is incredibly energizing as we work together to develop new and unique ways to add value for our members, our community partners and for those who don’t even know that we exist, but who’ll benefit from our hard work on their behalf.”
Here are the perks of being part of the Duneland Chamber of Commerce:
Advertizing and Publicity - members will receive free advertizing and publicity through the Chamber's weekly e-newsletter, the "Chamber Express", a free listing for the annual business directory, free web site listing, affordable website banner advertising, discounted advertising for Duneland Today, opportunity to display promotional materials at the monthly meetings and may utilize the Chamber Welcome Sign on Highway 49 for special advertising messages for as little as $50 per week.
Business referrals - hundreds of requests for names of local businesses, professionals and services are sent in every year and Chamber members are always referred first.
Business Resources – the Duneland Chamber offers a wide variety of publications that aid and promote business development in the Duneland area including demographics on populations, housing, an area map and information guides.
Business Education - the Chamber offers programs that are geared toward business education such as small business enhancement and community building topics throughout the year.
Business and Governmental Contacts – members of the Chamber have the ability to make valuable business contacts and have access to great networking opportunities through participation in the many events and activities that the Duneland Chamber offers.
Residential Welcome Bags – with this perk, businesses are able to get creative when new citizens come to a community. Business can introduce themselves and their goods and services to new residents by offering items such as calendars, pens, magnets, notepads etc. These items are delivered to new residents of the community.
Networking - Members have access to great events that the Chambers offers such as the Duneland Chamber's After Hours Club, Sunrise Seminars,Dawn of Duneland gatherings, monthly luncheons and 15 annual events. A big event that the Duneland Chamber helps coordinate is the their annual Chamber Network Night which is a business trade show. This is a great opportunity to network with over 150 businesses throughout Northwest Indiana.
New Member Business Promotion - Chamber Ambassadors welcome new members by providing guidance for engaging with Chamber events and programming, as well as assistance with coordinating a ribbon cutting and grand opening ceremony for Chamber members.
Mailing Lists and Labels - Segmented membership mailing lists are available to members for free when requested for the first time. Additional labels can be purchased for a small fee.
The Duneland Chamber does quite a bit in the community to promote positive involvement and to highlight the area's resources. One of the most popular events is the Chesterton European Market which takes place each year on Saturdays from May to October. The Market provides an excellent platform for local businesses, farmers, artisans, entertainers, restaurants and more to showcase their wares and talents in one convenient place. This unique experience can't be found anywhere else and any member would be proud to be part of such a creative and community-oriented Chamber.
Along with the European Market, the Duneland Chamber has events going on throughout the year to celebrate the Duneland Communities such as the Mistletoe Market, Downtown Trick-or-Treat, Twilight Parade, a spectacular fireworks display for the 4th of July, a Holiday Bazaar, and that is just the tip of the iceberg. There really is a lot going on to boost tourism and community involvement.
“Part of what it means to build a community is being open to new ideas about who belongs to it – and how value can be added by energizing the relationships inside of it. Here at the chamber, we consider our work to be first and foremost about developing people – not upholding industry-standard procedure,” Baughman said. “Toward that end, we invest time and energy to meet each of our members where they stand, and walk with them to where they want to be. We are very intentional about staying open to new ways of making that journey, even if – especially if - those ideas aren’t the “business-as-usual” standards that everyone else has latched onto. We recognize that good ideas always start from the heart, then get vetted by the head – not the other way around. Our goal for the future is to continue leading with our hearts, which are firmly committed to growing the businesses of our member organizations, sharing the good news about our community’s successes, and enriching the lives of those we’ve been entrusted to steward.”
So if you are looking for a place that will provide you and your business with a great experience and immerse you in some unique and wonderful communities, then please don't hesitate to contact the Duneland Chamber of Commerce and become a member. This is an opportunity that once seized, is never regretted.