The Spooner Area Chamber of Commerce would like to communicate the successes, current projects, as well as some of the projects and activities the chamber is involved with that are often overlooked.
In today’s tough economic times, a Chamber Membership is one of the best dollar-for-dollar marketing expenses you have can spend, and we look forward to serving you. Listed below are some of our recent highlights as some supplemental information you may find helpful or at least interesting.
2016 proved to be another successful year for the Spooner Area Chamber. Along with increased membership we also experienced growth in our many festivals and events.
We’ve had several new businesses join the Spooner Chamber including: The Sign Dr., Jack’s Canoe & Tube Rental, Pine Brook Farm, Quantum Point Strategies, RAB Consulting, Apple Awards Inc., Knight Barry Title Group, Spooner Wesleyan Church, Drydenwire, Treat Depot and Frey Financial Incorporated. Be sure to welcome them!!
Highlights From 2016.
- Membership Growth – Membership continues to grow even in tough economic times. Today, we have more than 190 chamber members. In 2016 we added 11 new chamber members while retaining over 95% of existing members.
- Website/Social Media - Our websites (including www.spoonerchamber.org, www.jackpinesavagedays.com, www.spoonerzombierun.com and www.savagedash.com have had over 50,000 first-time unique visitors this year alone. Our Social Media pages (ie.facebook, twitter, LinkedIn, etc) have also grown. We now have a Facebook page for each Chamber event and we have over 3,800 likes or fans between all our pages. This Social media presence gives us an awesome communication tool for both Chamber events as well as communicating to our visitors to the area. A monthly newsletter is sent out to over 800 people as well as weekly Email Blasts promoting upcoming events.
In January 2016, with the help of Beverly Stencel from UW-Extension, we held a strategic planning session. The purpose of this planning session was to step back and to see what we are doing, why we are doing it, and if we should continue doing the things we are doing. We recognize the process of strategic planning is on going. Throughout the course of 2017, we will continue to look at our organizational structure, the various events, and committees. We will continue to evaluate ourselves with our members’ best interests in mind.
Philanthropy and Community Service
The Chamber works hard to support our community in many areas. A portion of the money we make from our events goes back into Chamber programs, but it also supports programs and organizations that we feel are good for our community and have the greatest financial need. Some of the organizations/programs that we have contributed to in 2015 are Spooner PTO, Red Cross Blood Drives and Junior Achievement. We also allow Non-Profit organizations to raise money for their programs at many of our events. These groups include St. Fancis De Sales Catholic Church and School, Spooner Area Youth Hockey Association, Spooner Lions Club, Spooner Boy Scouts, Spooner Blue Line Club, & Washburn County 4H just to name a few.
Synergies with the Executive Board and other organizations
Several members of the Executive Board are also active in other areas of the community. This has helped our Chamber connect and synergize with other community groups including Washburn County Tourism, Leadership Washburn County, Wisconsin Canoe Heritage Museum, Business Improvement District, City Council, Washburn County Economic Development Corporation, UW Extension, Spooner School District and School Board.
- Food & Wine Tasting – Last year’s event was another great fundraising success! Spooner Area Youth Hockey Association was last year’s recipient of over $10,000.
- Jack Pine Savage Days –This was Jack Pine’s 24th Year, and we are pleased to announce that JPSD had a great year. Our “Savage Dash” had over 300 people participate in the Fifth year, and over 400 children participated in the “Kids Dash”. Jack Pine has its own websites which helped us promote the event and improve communication and marketing. Check out www.savagedash.com and www.jackpinesavagedays.com
- Jack O’ Lantern Festival – This year’s event was a huge success. “The Zombie Run” was another great event with almost 150 runners that helped expand an already successful event. Live music, bonfires and Brewfest were also popular events at the festival.
- Chamber Dollar Purchase and Use – Chamber Dollars continue to be a very popular prize, gift, and award for many businesses. Over $20,000 in chamber dollars are purchased every year and redeemed by local chamber businesses. This is our way of helping create a “Shop Local” campaign and to support local Chamber Businesses.
- Tourism Marketing - This important activity is one that is often overlooked as a Chamber function. The Chamber spends over $20,000 annually on tourism marketing including website, online banner ads, Discover Wisconsin Videos, Billboards, as well as many other print media publications.
- Volunteer/Membership Awards Event- This was our 4th annual Volunteer and Member appreciation event held at Heartwood Conference Center. This event has hosted nearly 100 attendees each year and has become a fun bi-annual event that has been great to recognize many chamber and community volunteers and has also provided a platform for our different event leaders to discuss the successes of their events and celebrate our organization with a fun dinner and awards ceremony. The next Event will take place Spring 2018.
- “Yearly Package Price” Available before January 31st, 2017. Pay a one-time fee for the year. This is an option for Chamber members that are looking to pay for membership, advertising, and event sponsorships once a year versus getting billed for each portion separately.