A recent article, 6 Reasons NOT to Join a BNI Group by Ivana Taylor says that (BNI)Business Network International is a membership organization that purports to help improve any small business by providing it with a steady stream of new leads.
While BNI membership seems to be ideal for a small business success, here are things you should know before joining the BNI group.
1. There is a membership fee of $500 per year plus hidden costs.
Hidden costs include:
- Food cost if your group meets at a restaurant.
- Meeting rooms rental if your chapter has meetings at a rented location (e.g. meeting space Philly).
- Average weekly incidental costs $10 to $20.
To sum up, you may end up paying from $750 to $1200 annually.
2. It will consume your time and effort.
Seemingly, you will only have to meet for about two hours per week; however, you will only get the most of your membership if you attend the weekly meeting and meet with other members outside the regular meeting religiously. Your attendance, referrals you’ve made, guests you’ve invited are closely monitored (this activity leads to getting referrals through reciprocation).
3. The BNI works well with traditional small businesses.
- accounting and bookkeeping
- pest control
- real estate
- Other small service providers.
However, it is not best fit for advanced, technologically savvy businesses like internet marketing, and graphics design. Your time will be better spent generating your leads online.
4. You must have a referral system strategy.
You have to share your referral guidelines with your BNI group so that it would be easier for them to search/look for ideal clients and gives you a process that you can use to draw great referrals.
BNI is a great organization that will help your small business succeed if you are prepared to pay the cost. Likewise, if you need an office in Philly , YourOffice Philadelphia offers you a wide choice of office and workspace solutions: small office space Philadelphia and executive suites Philadelphia. You’ll have access to a complete array of office support and concierge services as well as state-of-the-art business technology.
Are you ready to join BNI and leverage your membership to its fullest? Feel free to share your thoughts. You can also see us on Twitter and Facebook.