Venice Chamber of Commerce Business Directory & Visitor Guide Successfully Published In-House

Staff was unburdened, sales improved and the Chamber generated substantial non-dues revenue

“Ed, Thank you so much… You and your team are priceless, the advice and support are irreplaceable. Thank you so much for everything.”

Kathy Lehner

President & CEO, Venice (FL) Chamber of Commerce

Kathy Lehner, CEO of the Venice Chamber of Commerce in Florida, inherited two in-house publishing projects: a chamber of commerce Membership Directory and a separate Visitor Guide publication. The chamber had been struggling to produce these publications in-house; Being a publisher is not a chamber’s core competency.

Not only was staff responsible for selling ads, but with all the components of being a publisher. Collecting all the ad materials, getting ads approved, writing content, getting photos, finding designers, proofing the content and all the minutia was quite stressful, and distracted staff from the business of running a chamber of commerce.

Kathy liked the significant non-dues revenue these publications generated, the staff burden and distraction from running the Chamber of Commerce drove Kathy to reach out for help. Chamber Marketing Partners was hired to manage the project, provide suggestions to improve the process and coach the team.

Both the Visitor Guide and the Membership Directory combined into a single, annual “Visitor Guide & Preferred Business Directory” publication, streamlining sales and reducing costs. Andrea Arnold, the membership director and a natural born salesperson was coached on the specifics of selling ads. Andrea now sells ads all year and builds advertising into membership packages.

The end result? Ad sales increased, the publication was improved, local vendors were utilized, the Chamber’s process was streamlined, staff was unburdened, and the feedback from the members was great. The Chamber’s financial return was as good as, and ultimately better than they had prior to hiring CMP, all with less staff burden and a better quality result.

Total control, flexible content and local vendors. That’s how things go with Chamber Marketing Partners.