Making Tracks: Why join the chamber?
Every year at the chamber we ask you to make an investment in your community by renewing your membership with us, and while I hope all of our members understand the work we do at the chamber, it never hurts to spread the message again. And lucky for all of you, I love talking about what being a member of the Rhinelander Area Chamber of Commerce is all about.
First, we help make sure people know about your business. Thousands of people, both residents and visitors alike, walk through our doors, call our office or send an email asking for information and business recommendations. As a member of the chamber, we recommend your business to these inquiries. You can also stock brochures and literature in the Visitors Center, in our Hodag Home Packets or our New Member Packets, giving your businesses exposure to hundreds more potential customers. What else do we do to help make sure your business is in front of potential customers? You’ll get a listing on our website, including a link to your website if you have one, and a listing in our annual Rhinelander Area Guide that gets seen by thousands more potential customers.
Beyond the exposure that we can give your business by being a member of the chamber, you have access to tools to help grow and develop your business. Each month we host a variety of programs to help you network and connect with other business leaders in the community, and educational opportunities to make sure your business is running at the top of its game. At our Business After 5 program you get the opportunity to enjoy some food and a few drinks with other business and community leaders that may have just the answer you are looking for in your business. We also host the Chamber Lunch n Learn series each month where we bring you advice and knowledge from experts in all sorts of areas that benefit your business.
As a chamber member you are also supporting our programs to help develop the potential in members of our community, to get them involved and to show them what’s to love about the Rhinelander area. Our Young Professionals Group is geared towards the younger working force, and meets monthly to offer a social outing and chance for this group to meet new people and learn about what is great about our area, introducing them to all the reasons Rhinelander makes a great community to live and work in. Leadership Oneida County is another program along these lines. Each year 20 candidates are given a look into all aspects of the Oneida County Community, opening doors to ways they can help and grow our community. From learning about our industry and education opportunities to helping a non-profit and community group accomplish a goal or project, this program helps to instill a drive to lead and a sense of pride in our community.
We’re involved in a number of economic development programs and committees, working closely with Downtown Rhinelander Inc., Oneida County Economic Development and the City of Rhinelander Economic Development. We work with Partners in Education to help make sure the education system in our community is fulfilling the needs of our business community to make sure that we have a strong workforce waiting in the wings to take our businesses to the next level. Right now we’re working with DRI on “I Buy Local”, a campaign geared at boosting businesses for all local companies. Each and every day we are working to make sure that businesses in Rhinelander have access to great resources and a support to make sure they can continue to grow.
I truly believe that the strength of a community lies in the strength of its businesses. Here in the Rhinelander area we have a top-notch business community that I am proud to be a part of and to help support through the work of the chamber. I hope that as you read this you want to be a part of this support system as well.
The best part is joining the chamber is extremely affordable and opens up many doors. Give me a call and we can talk about how joining the chamber not only supports your business, but the entire Rhinelander business community.
Rhinelander Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Lara Reed is available at (715) 365-7464.