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Business to business

Fort Myers Beach Chamber guest speaker gives advice.

May 17, 2017
Jessica Salmond - News Editor ( , Fort Myers Beach Bulletin, Fort Myers Beach Observer

The Fort Myers Beach Chamber of Commerce's monthly guest speaker wasn't an island businessowner, but she had a clear message for the beach.

"As long as you come together, we can continue to be the fantastic destination that we are," said Lisa Sbuttoni, the marketing director for the Edison Ford Winter Estates.

She spoke to the chamber membership at its May 11 meeting. Sbuttoni has been working for the estates since 2005; during that time she has helped develop a variety of different events to draw visitors to the attraction. One event, "Rhythm on the Water" is a monthly recurring concert series.

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Lisa Sbuttoni of Edison Ford Winter Estates discussed the importance of partnership.

The key to developing a successful business and maintaining growth is to develop partnerships, she told the Chamber membership. For example, several hoteliers have coupons in their lobby for the estates, so their guests get exposure to one of Lee County's attractions. This summer, Sbuttoni has organized a beer tasting with a local restaurant, exposing its personal brew while also drawing a crowd to her venue.

"I read the comment cards," she said. "Most people find out about the Estates from word of mouth."

Sbuttoni is a member of multiple chambers of commerce - there are 13 in the Lee County area. She told the audience not to just become a member, but to be involved.

"If you're going to join a chamber, join it and go and take advantage of what they have to offer," Sbuttoni said.

She also suggested joining the board of an organization that a business owner was interested in and could dedicate time to, not to just join many boards and not play an active role.

Chamber President Jacki Liszak said she would work with Sbuttoni to find solutions to take beach visitors and residents to the Estates and back. The Estates are one of Lee County's top attractions.

Liszak also announced that the Chamber would be moving from its current location in the Key Estero Shops Plaza at the end of the month. The property was purchased in March, and rent has doubled, she said.

"For the health of the Chamber we had to make this move," she said.

Liszak wouldn't reveal the new location as she is still in negotiations, but she confirmed that it will still be on Fort Myers Beach.

The Chamber plans to be in the new location by June and will have an open house. In the meantime, Liszak said she'll start asking for volunteers to help pack up and move.

"We'll still be on the island, and this will be a great new chapter," she said.



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