Networking Events in South Florida - Business & Social
by Jay Shapiro - Founder of Luxury Chamber
As President of a local niche Chamber of Commerce its imperative that I keep my eye on the pulse of the South Florida networking scene so that I can constantly add new business and find quality referrals for my member clients. In order to help you achieve your marketing goals I've compiled a list of every networking group in South Florida worth their weight in gold as well as a list of some of the best networking events to consider attending in our tri-county region.
Miami-Dade County Groups
1. Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce
Dues: $795 - $10,000
Events: they host about 10 events per month and its worth it to note that you cannot attend if you are not a member. They also do not have a future-member saver ticket. The quality of the events however is very high so if the budget allows it may be worth it to join.
2. Network After Work
Dues: $15 / $20 / $25 RSVP to save money.
Events: They host their events at different bars all over the country on different nights of the week. They do get a good turnout and its a great event for jobseekers and recruiters. Mostly a younger crowd.
3.) Brickell Living
Dues: Varies by event!
Events: They have close to 80,000 followers on Instagram so they get a younger turnout. They tend to focus on trendy events and local bar crawls in the Downtown Miami area.
4.) Coral Gables Chamber of Commerce
Dues: $300 - $2750
Events: They host about 12 events per month. Non-Members can attend they simply pay $10. more per event. Younger networkers may want to consider their Wine Down Wednesday mixer event at Sushi Maki and sponsored by Keyes Company Real Estate.
5.) Aventura Marketing Council
Dues: $475 - $8250
Events: They serve as the official chamber for Aventura and sometimes team up with the North Miami Beach Chamber for co-hosted networking events. They only host 4-5 events per month but they are very high quality events and well worth attending. They get involved in civic interests, grand openings, politics and law enforcement as well.
Palm Beach County Groups
1.) The Breakers Club Membership
Dues: $8300 - $25,000
Events: Legendary club founded in 1896. A group where industry tycoons and Palm Beach Socialites Network. The Sunday Brunch as actually one of the best around and a great event for meeting quality business contacts.
2.) Mar-a-Lago Club
Events: Great networking for people who do not need networking rather they choose to network with others in their financial and political realm. Long lines to attend now that the founder Donald Trump is the head of this networking group and happens to be President of the USA.
3.) Inner Circle Executive Club - Boca Raton
Events: Unofficially affiliated with the Boca Raton Chamber of Commerce this is probably the best free networking group in South Florida. They meet twice per month on Thursdays at Pinon Grill in the Boca Raton Town Center Mall. Local socialites and the mayor do attend the events and they tend to bring a charity on board at most events. Turnout is generally around 80-100 people.
4.) Palm Beach Chamber
Dues: $225 - $600
Events: Affiliated with The Breakers and just about every important business in Palm Beach. Brooks Brothers and most of the high end boutique stores on Worth Ave. They host about 12-15 events per month. This group is great for wine-lovers. About half of the events feature wine-tasting which I feel completely apt given the locale. Membership is affordable and event turnout is strong.
5.) BNI - Palm Beach & South Florida
Dues: $445 + $150 application fee
Events: They tend to focus more on breakfast meetings yet each sub-chapter is slightly different. If your networking goal is to generate a massive amount of referrals then this is the group for you. If your goal is to make a friend and simply enjoy some cocktails you may not want to join BNI as they do demand production and referral quotas. A good group for some and they are internationally recognized. Another benefit is that they limit the number of people in each profession who can join so that all leads for your area of expertise will be passed on to yourself rather than a competing business person.
Broward County Groups
1.) Luxury Chamber
Dues: $350 - $5000
Events: They host one to three events per month. The main event is held in the evening on the 3rd Monday of every month at upscale venues. Its a niche market chamber focusing on affluence, luxury brands and philanthropy. The events tend to bring great speakers and celebrities and members of the chamber can bring their guests free of charge.
2.) Tower Club
Events: The Tower Club is more of a fine-dining social club held in its own gourmet penthouse suite in the Regions Bank Building in downtown Fort Lauderdale. They are part of the Club Corp network of luxury clubs, country clubs and fine resorts. If you live on or near Las Olas this group is a must join especially if you're a foodie.
3.) Fort Lauderdale Chamber of Commerce
Dues: $200 - $3100
Events: They are a true civic based chamber in every sense of the word and they have committees for several target areas such as leads group / biz to biz. They also serve local communities which don't have a formal chamber such as the affluent suburb of Weston. The events are large yet the quality is mixed.
4.) Biz to Biz
Dues: $200 and attend all events for free
Headed by Harry Baum who is a South Florida business legend and has been hosting networking events since 1985. Essentially a one-man chamber of commerce who hosts 12 events per month including business expos and networking events at local fine dining establishments. Very helpful group but they do allow MLM or money making opportunities. Great events for the price point! Pay $10 and bring a guest and free appetizers.
5.) Marine Industries Association of So FLA
Dues: $500 - $300
Events: They host a few large events per year and are a major part of many international boat shows. Members include yacht brokers, marine industry service specialists, captains and anything related to boating or marine equipment, machinery, supply or service.