Prospective members routinely ask “What’s the value in a Chamber membership?”

While some may simply be asking for a comprehensive benefits list – all the free promotions and networking events included in one’s membership – others are questioning the monetary value of joining the Chamber:

  • “Will joining the Chamber bring me more business?”
  • “How much will Chamber membership increase my sales?”
  • “Is Chamber membership still relevant in the Technological Age?”

Recent studies show Chamber membership is effective in influencing today’s consumer’s purchasing decisions, in the form of increased sales and community perception.  Not only is Chamber membership still a smart decision for 21st century organizations, but the value of Chamber membership has actually increased over the past decade.

Chamber Membership’s Big ROI

In 2012, The Shapiro Group, Inc. conducted a national survey analyzing how chamber membership impacted consumers’ perceptions of companies. Survey results revealed that over two-thirds of consumers believed Chamber members used better business practices, were more reputable, prioritized customer care, and were more involved in the community than non-chamber members.

Additionally, the survey showed 80% of consumers were more likely to purchase goods and services from a company that was a Chamber member vs. non-member. Wow – “80% more likely to purchase” is quite the result! How’s that for your monthly sales boost?

The value of Chamber membership isn’t limited to small business:

  • When consumers know that a national restaurant franchise is a member of the chamber of commerce, they are 68% more likely to eat at the franchise in the next few months.
  • When consumers know that an insurance company is a member of the chamber of commerce, they are 36% more likely to think favorably of the company.
  • When consumers know that a national automobile dealer is a member of the chamber of commerce, they are 31% more likely to consider purchasing their next car from that company.

Membership Value Continues to Increase

Recent studies revealed the value of chamber membership to small businesses and community professionals has actually increased over the past decade. In comparison of two Chamber studies conducted by the Shapiro Group in 2007 and 2012, the following increases were noted:

  • When consumers perceive that a business is a chamber member, there is a 73% increase in consumer awareness and a 68% increase in local reputation (51% and 57% respectively in 2007).
  • Consumers are 80% more likely to patronize a business in the future that they believe is a member of the local chamber of commerce (63% in 2007). The study also has more good news for chamber members that sell to other businesses.
  • Regarding the chamber’s impact on the local economy, 86% of respondents believe that the local chamber of commerce helps create jobs and promotes local economic development (82% in 2007).


Bottom-line: Positive perception increases among consumers when a business is a member of the local chamber of commerce, and the value of this positive perception continues to increase. Regardless of your industry or business’ stage of development, Chamber membership provides extensive value to both you and your organization.

If you’re interested in learning more about how a Chamber membership can help you reach your goals, contact Brandon Wilcox, Ottawa Area Chamber of Commerce’s Membership Director, at (785) 242 – 1000 or [email protected]

Be sure to ask about our “Try It – You’ll Like It!” New Member Offer!