Lead and Referral Groups
Chambers are important business connectors and referral groups are one way that chambers can foster business networking. Some chambers have their own referral groups and some work with BNI, Accelerant, LeTip or other programs.
Chamber-Led Referral Groups
Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce has a Leads Group Program.
Greater Omaha Chamber (Neb.) has organized Referral Groups.
- Participants attend their leads group in order to meet reliable vendors, establish a corporate network, increase company visibility, educate others about their products and/or services and, ultimately, increase sales.
- To participate, one must be a member of the chamber.
- Leads Group Program offers an opportunity that is pressure-free, affordable, profitable, motivational, educational, full of business connections, and is business-development focused.
Hagerstown-Washington County Chamber of Commerce (Md.) manages several ChamberConnects Professional Referral Groups.
- Members identify opportunities and share leads with others in the group, creating an environment in which everyone benefits.
- The chamber partners with BNI of the Heartland and Center Sphere to provide referral groups. Both of these partners offer special pricing for chamber members.
Iowa City Area Chamber of Commerce (Iowa) has a Referral Exchange group.
- Each ChamberConnects Group is limited to 25 members that are specific to their industry. By joining CCG, business professionals have the opportunity to multiply their exposure by educating fellow CCG members about their business and promote each other.
Little Rock Chamber of Commerce (Ark.) offers several Leads Groups.
- Referral Exchange connects 20-25 non-competing Iowa City Area Chamber member businesses for the sole purpose of sharing leads, referrals, tips, information and advice that directly supports their ability to drive business.
O'Fallon Chamber of Commerce (Mo.) has a Leads Group program.
- Members representing noncompetitive business categories exchange leads to help increase members’ bottom lines and grow the region’s economy.
- In 2012 alone, 1,508 leads were exchanged in the three groups, accounting for over $1.6M in reported new business.
- Leads members must be a member of the chamber.
Somerset County Business Partnership (Pa.) has four Leads Groups.
- Leads groups are smaller networking groups to allow members to get to know each other’s businesses more thoroughly.
- Members are required to meet with each other outside of the group for a one-to-one conversations.
- Each group member commits to bring one guest per quarter as part of their membership. Guests should be affiliated with industries not currently represented in the group.
- Leads groups are free for all Chamber members; however, only one industry may be represented per group
TriCity Regional Chamber of Commerce (Wash.) has Leads Exchange and Referral Network (LEARN) Groups.
- Participation is limited to one person per business category and one representative per member company.
- Participants must commit to having a one-on-one session with each participant in their group.
- LEARN Groups are intended to be a tool for members to cultivate their business and include 10-20 Regional Chamber members from different industries.
- LEARN Group members must be members of the Chamber.
- The intent is to grow professional networks, build personal and professional relationships, and develop business strategies.
Chambers with LeTip Groups
- LeTip advocates for membership in both the local chapter and in the LeTip Chapter. In their FAQ, they say: "LeTip believes that you should be a member of both your Chamber and LeTip. Your Chamber of Commerce is good for your business and your community."
- Guidelines for CV LeTip Member Participation at Chamber of Commerce Mixers/Functions - Castro Valley/Eden Area Chamber of Commerce (Calif.) guidelines say that attendance and participation at functions is designed to directly promote the Chapter to potential members and extend invitations for breakfast, develop a “prospect list” by gathering business cards, and demonstrate a commitment to serving the communities and being an active part of local business activities.
- PRO: Professional Referral Organization is the second of two industry exclusive referral organizations which are a part of the dynamic Skokie Chamber of Commerce & Industry (Ill.). The PRO group, originally known as Old Orchard LeTip, has been meeting since 2004 and officially folded into the Chamber as of January 2014. The mission of PRO: Professional Referral Organization, is to provide the opportunity for members to build strong, productive, long-term relationships with other business professionals in a structured forum that encourages the exchange of quality referrals.
More Referral and Lead Group Examples
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| Lead and Referral GroupsLast Updated: 10/2/2018