Reflecting on the past year, the Steinbach Chamber recognizes with gratitude a year of generosity and innovation within the local business community. While the past two years have been anything but easy for businesses, the Steinbach Chamber continues to work as the voice of business in our community at all levels of government. In 2021, the Steinbach Chamber maintained a strong focus on leading growth and connecting people in our community.
“While we recognize the intense challenges our business community has faced in the past two years, we would be amiss to ignore the inspiring experiences of generosity and innovation that have also taken place,” said Michelle Bezditny, Executive Director for the Chamber. “We have received positive feedback from many business owners about creative and innovative ways in which they’ve pivoted operations to stay open.”
Part of the Steinbach Chamber’s mandate is to provide opportunities to connect to the resources and networks you need to grow your business, be more profitable, and attain success. While that may have looked different in the past two years, the Steinbach Chamber is pleased that members continue to find value in its events, resources, and expertise.
“Our members have communicated that building connections and networking is significant to their success,” said Bezditny. “Hearing that, the Chamber sought to provide virtual opportunities for connection in 2021, including our Virtual ‘Speed Networking’ Mixers, online Lunch & Learn events, Young Leaders Breakfast Series, weekly Chamber Chats, our Roundtable Mentor Event, and others. Events like these foster new valuable business connections but also help to maintain important existing relationships as well.”
Alongside the connections and networking component, there is the ever-growing promotion and education of what it means to ‘Support Local’ in our community.
“At the Chamber, I think it’s fair to say we are extremely passionate about supporting local and the far-reaching community benefits that result when we do so,” said Bezditny. “When you support local business, you support the local economy, local families, local sports and recreation opportunities, and local non-profits. It’s really a win-win situation.”
In line with supporting the love for local, the Chamber successfully executed on the following initiatives in 2021:
- July 2021 saw the Chamber’s first ever Backyard Tourist contest, encouraging local consumers to shop local and post pictures on social media for a chance to win one of ten $150 local prize packs. Over 26,000 people viewed posts on social media and the Chamber website.
- In September 2021, the Chamber hosted its fourth annual Steinbach Burger Days event. A record 19 local restaurants featured signature burgers to tickle tastebuds across the southeast. During the week, over 12,500 burgers were sold, generating $195,000 in total sales, with each restaurant selling between 150-1500 burgers!
- The Steinbach Chamber launched a new Celebrate Supporting Local promotional video in December 2021, highlighting the tangible impacts that supporting local has on the community. The video has quickly become a source of community pride on social media.
- The Chamber’s first A Merry Local Christmas Campaign took place in December 2021. This campaign saw promotion of shopping local during the holiday season. Local businesses were provided an opportunity to promote a holiday special or deal on the Chamber’s website. Local consumers were encouraged to buy local, brag about their purchase on social media, and tag local businesses and friends for a chance to win one of three $500 local gift baskets. Over 21,000 people viewed posts on social media and the Chamber website.