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ACCE Membership Development Division

February 2017

About the Division

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Message from the Chair Kelle Marsalis

Hello from Dallas, Texas! It's a new year, but there's one thing that hasn't changed for most in the membership development world. It's not getting any easier to sell and retain memberships. And we can't do it alone.

I work very closely with my organization's board of directors and am constantly looking for ways to encourage more board member participation in many of our activities. This year, I will particularly be working on the board's participation in recruitment efforts. How does your board support your sales and retention efforts? Here at the Dallas Regional Chamber, every board member is challenged by the chair to recruit two new members, as well as nominate a team member to participate in our Ambassador and Top Investor Stewards programs. These volunteer groups are tasked with onboarding and retention of our Top Investor members throughout the year.

Our Ambassador group is not the group of old that delivered new member plaques and attended ribbon cuttings. Our chamber doesn't even offer those benefits anymore because they stopped being valuable to our membership. Instead, our Ambassadors, with the help of our staff, are assigned companies to meet with throughout the year to encourage peer support and dialogue. In turn, these relationships are a big driver for retention at our chamber and promote the most valuable benefit of all: relationships.

Finding the right mix of volunteer involvement in recruitment and retention is always a struggle. A great place to hear about efforts that are working across the country is next month's Sales Training in St. Louis. I hope to see you there, and would love to hear more about volunteer engagement in membership development in your organization.

Kelle M. Marsalis, CCE, IOM
Chair, Membership Development Division Advisory Board
Vice President, Strategic Initiatives, Dallas Regional Chamber

New MDD chair elect namedKelly Fanelli

Kelly Fanelli, membership director of the Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches, has been named the MDD's chair elect. Kelly is a recipient of a Gold Lifetime Sales Achievement Award (2012) and Million Dollar Circle Award (2014). She has presented at ACCE conferences, produced several ACCE webinars, and contributed to Chamber Executive magazine. Kelly has participated in our advisory board as a MDD sales committee member since February 2016. In addition to her new role as chair elect, she will also become chair of the sales committee.

Sales Training: Meet us in St. Louis, March 9–10

From Kyle Sexton's opening presentation to the closing session with Doug Holman, our conference's agenda is jam-packed with advice, information, training, and networking opportunities for membership professionals at all career stages. Register by Feb. 10 to take advantage of early bird savings. Discounted hotel rates end Feb. 15.

New this year! We will offer optional small group sessions—one for brand-new sales professionals, and another for managers—and individual sessions (by appointment) with ACCE Research Director Sarah Melby. Sarah can help you find the membership data, statistics, samples, survey data, and more from our information database.

All-star sales tips and advice

Looking for some sales inspiration? In this article from the fall 2014 issue of Chamber Executive, five award-winning membership sales professionals share insights and strategies they use to consistently perform at the top of their game.

Membership webinars and more

Emotional Intelligence: Mental Skills for Chamber Success
Thursday, Feb. 9 @ 2 p.m. EST | REGISTER

ACCE eTour
Wednesday, Feb. 15 @ 11:30 a.m. EST | REGISTER

Membership Statistics in Dynamic Chamber Benchmarking
Wednesday, April 19 @ 12:30 p.m. ET | REGISTER

Circle of Champions and MDD Roundtable Call
Wednesday, May 17 @ 12:30 p..m ET | CALL INSTRUCTIONS

Pre-registration is not required. Session will be recorded and posted on the MDD page.

Sales Contest

We're nearing the end of the third quarter of our Sales Contest! The deadline for posting posting Q3 numbers (for Dec. 1 - Feb. 28) is March 7. Full information is online, but here are additional reminders:

  • Post your numbers using this link.
  • Make sure you've submitted one Sales Contest Entrance Form for the 2016-17 year. You don't need to re-submit a form for each entry.
  • After you post, you should receive a confirmation email. Please save it.
  • If you don't receive a confirmation email, contact Susan.
  • Check out the updated standings when posted, and let Susan know of any questions or potential problems. The current spreadsheets (for Q1 and Q2) are on the Sales Contest page.

Lifetime Achievement Awards

The deadline to submit completed Lifetime Achievement Award applications is June 2. More information and the downloadable application form can be found here.

HERO news and notes

Your ACCE login (<<SSA_LOGIN>>) and password (<<SSA_PASSWD>>) are required to access some HERO pages.

  • Need ideas or a refresh? Check out the ACCE Information library, Chamberpedia, featuring a library of membership resources, including:
  • We're seeking more examples for our Samples Library! Contact HERO if you have any of the following to share:
    • Membership recruitment plans
    • Membership retention plans
    • First year retention plans
    • Membership sales staff incentive schedules, commission examples and annual goal templates
    • Membership engagement coordinator position descriptions


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