- Chairman's Message
- New Advisory Board Members
- Available: Roundtable Call Recording
- 2016 National Sales Training
- 60 Ideas Through the Year
- 2016 ACCE Convention
- Circle of Champions Recognition Programs
- MDD Peer Groups
- HERO News & Notes
- CCE: Just get it.
- Member News
About the Division
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How well do you know your members?
In our roles as membership professionals, it is our job to talk to members – if not every day, then nearly every day. So we should be the resident "experts" as to what our members want, need and expect, right? Would you be willing to bet a significant amount of money that you know EXACTLY what your members want? Would you be willing to bet a single membership, a series of programs or your job on it? I guess if someone was pointing a gun at my head, I could probably get eight out of ten correct.
I don't know about you, but I'd rather be more confident about setting up my next membership campaign or retention program, when I know there is a lot riding on it. A colleague of mine recently referenced this piece in Inc. on making the most of customer feedback. The article talks about the importance of not only gathering data to help guide in the decision-making process, but also acting on the data after you've collected it.
We are now investing more time and resources to survey our members on a regular basis and have found it to be extremely valuable. I think you will also find it to be well worth it, especially when you go into your decision-making processes with more confidence by leaning on solid data. I am always more than willing to share some of our sample surveys, and I know ACCE has a number of tools available, including sample surveys and other resources available through the HERO page. I think you'll be surprised by a few things you didn't know about your members, but more importantly, it will help you be more confident in what you do know about your members.
To your continued success,
Chair, Membership Development Division Advisory Board
Senior Director, Membership Sales & Service,
Council of Smaller Enterprises (COSE)
Welcome New Advisory Board Members
It is with great pleasure that we welcome two new members to the Membership Development Advisory Board.
Kelly Fanelli (pictured left) is the membership director of the Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches. She is a recipient of a Gold Lifetime Sales Achievement Award (2012) and Million Dollar Circle Award (2014), and has been a presenter at ACCE conferences. She has also presented at several ACCE webinars and contributed to Chamber Executive magazine.
Gina Martens (pictured right) is the senior vice president of member relations for the Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce. She began her career with the chamber in September 2011, and in 2015 was a first-place finisher in the ACCE Sales Contest for number of new sales.
We extend thanks to outgoing board members Oma McCall, former membership development representative at the Greater Sarasota Chamber of Commerce, and Emily Waite, executive director of the Boardman (OR) Chamber of Commerce. We are grateful for your service and commitment to the chamber membership development profession.
Roundtable Call Recording Available
Kelly Fanelli led an excellent Circle of Champions roundtable call on March 16 on the subject of chamber ambassador programs. Check out the recording of the call on the ACCE Membership Development Division page. This page also includes links to our latest eTour of the ACCE website, other recorded webinars, past MDD eNewsletters, links to our HERO information library, and more.
Please help continue our roundtable call program! If you have ideas for future roundtable calls or can volunteer to moderate a call, please contact Susan McGuire.
2016 National Sales Training
We had a terrific group of enthusiastic learners and networkers at our 2016 Sales Training in February. Many thanks to all of our presenters and to Felipe Cantú and his colleagues at the Greater Austin Chamber for being such gracious representatives of the great city of Austin. All available handouts and presentations from the training have been posted on the Membership Development Division page.
60 Ideas Through the Year
One of our favorite convention membership sessions is our annual "60 Ideas in 60 Minutes" program, where we share great ideas for membership development and engagement with our fellow membership professionals. We'll be featuring award-winning ideas from that session in each of our next few MDD newsletters.
Mentors for New Businesses: A Win-Win
By David P. Rumbarger, President and CEO, Community Development Foundation (CDF) of Tupelo/Lee County (MS)
When the CDF learned that several start–up or fledgling businesses could not afford their Business Partners dues, the staff and board came up with an ideal solution. They asked members in good standing to sponsor/mentor a new, fledgling business for chamber membership for one year, at a cost of $350. Under this program, the sponsors receive recognition in the CDF e-newsletter and at board meetings, and the sponsored business is given all rights and privileges of membership for that year. In many cases the new businesses are mentored by their sponsors, and some have become clients and vendors for those businesses. Both experienced and new businesses are kept engaged and involved in the chamber and appreciate the additional opportunities for networking.
2016 Convention: Get Ready for Savannah!
We hope to see many membership professionals at our "60 Ideas" and other 2016 convention sessions, workshops and programs in Savannah this year, August 9-12, 2016. Visit the convention page for more information, and be sure to check back frequently as we update it. Registration opens April 4.
Circle of Champions Recognition Programs
Thank you to everyone who participated in our Circle of Champions recognition programs this year. A current Circle of Champions roster can be found on this page. Contact Susan McGuire with any additions or corrections. To join the Circle of Champions, fill out this on-line form or contact Susan.
Be sure to check out this video for insights on how the Circle can help YOU achieve your sales goals!
It's hard to believe that we are in our final quarter of the 2015-2016 Sales Contest! Check out the current standings on this page. The deadline for posting 4th quarter numbers (for March 1-May 31, 2016) is June 6, 2016. Please post your numbers using this link.
Lifetime Achievement Awards
Lifetime Achievement Awards application due dates are also coming up! More information and the downloadable application form can be found here. The deadline to submit completed Lifetime Achievement Award applications is June 3, 2016. The following criteria are used to determine the recognition levels:
Sales Contest and Lifetime Achievement Awards will be presented at ACCE's 2016 convention in Savannah.
- Bronze: 500 sales or $175,000 in sales
- Silver: 750 sales or $300,000 in sales
- Gold: 1000 sales or $500,000 in sales
- Platinum: 1250 sales or $750,000 in sales
- Million Dollar Circle: $1 million in sales
- Diamond: $1.5 million in sales
Formation of MDD Peer Groups
Are you interested in meeting regularly with a small group of your membership development peers (about 5–6 people each)? If so, let Susan McGuire know. MDD volunteers and staff will help match you with a group sharing similar interests and challenges. If you are already a member of this type of group, we would be grateful for your input on how best to initiate and support this program.
HERO News and Notes
Your ACCE login (<<SSA_LOGIN>>) and password (<<SSA_PASSWD>>) are required to access some HERO pages.
Need to know where your chamber stands with member retention, first year retention, market penetration, and more? Participate in the surveys in Dynamic Chamber Benchmarking for FY 2015 (Chamber Profile and Operations Survey sections). Once your chamber participates in the surveys, you'll have FREE 24/7 access to download the new 2015 reports and comparisons. Need a quick tutorial? Our HERO Team can help! Email HERO@acce.org to schedule a demo, or email us your questions anytime. Use our new live chat services available in Dynamic Chamber Benchmarking.
New in Chamberpedia
New in ACCE's Samples Library
Call for Samples!
We'd love to see your chamber's documents in the following areas:
- Membership staff position descriptions or employment contracts
- Membership staff commission structure examples
- Membership policies
- Chamber foundations documents (e.g., policies, procedures, plans, marketing, fundraising samples)
- Diversity and inclusion commitment statements
CCE: Just get it.
Remember that the learning and networking you do at ACCE (including convention, sales conferences, and webinar participation), all count towards earning your Certified Chamber Executive (CCE) designation: the only national certification for chamber professionals. For more information on how you can become one of the select few to attain this prestigious certification, check out the CCE website page, or contact Susan. The application deadline for the 2017 class is January 9, 2017.
The Augusta Metro Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announce the appointment of Anne-Rutledge Kacos as director of membership development. In this role, Anne-Rutledge will serve as the liaison between the chamber and the business community. She will be responsible for membership revenue through membership sales and retention efforts, as well as serving as the central point of contact for member customer service and administrative support.
If you have membership news to share with your MDD peers, please send it to Susan. We will include it in our newsletters or other publications on a space-available basis.