Opening a new, small business in the Madison area is all about plugging into the community. People in the area like doing business with their neighbors that surround them and the best way to connect your small business is Madison is with local business groups. There are many you can join or use, so let’s go over each one.
UW-Madison Small Business Development Center
The University of Wisconsin-Madison’s School of Business offers resources for anyone to help start and grow a small business. They offer online resources as well as classes, consulting, and local events.
Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce
The Chamber offers small business resources, a business directory, events, a newsletter and they can help you with groundbreaking, ribbon cutting, or open house if you become a member. With their events, you can connect with other local, small businesses in the area.
Wisconsin Small Business Development Center
The Wisconsin SBDC offer statewide support. They assist you with planning your startup, financing, sales/marketing advice, financial management assistance and help with getting operations set up. They provide education, tools, and resources for their members.
U.S. Small Business Administration – Madison, WI Office
The SBA has an office in Madison on Regent Street and they provide small business owners with access to capital, support, job creation, and economic development. They provide loans and startup capital through credit unions, local banks, and community-based lenders.
SCORE partners you with local mentors who can help you with your business. Most of their mentors are retired business people who want to share their knowledge and experience to help new small businesses succeed.
Wisconsin Women’s Business Initiative Corporation
WWBIC is a statewide, economic development corporation that provides individuals interested in starting, strengthening or expanding their businesses with education about finances and business. They mainly work with women, people of color, and low-income individuals.
Dane Buy Local
They help to promote products and services of businesses located in Dane County. You’ll events like business networking social hours, lunchtime educational seminars, and member benefits. They have an online directory of local businesses.
Social Media Breakfast Madison
This group is a non-profit, volunteer-ran organization that has a focus on educating business owners how to use social media to promote their business. Their meetings are free and you can do business networking there.
South Metropolitan Business Association
SMBA is helping the small business environment in Madison and Fitchburg by encouraging well planned, high-quality and balanced commercial and residential development and economic growth. They have meetings, focus groups, seminars, and social events.
They are a grassroots community group for entrepreneurs in the Madison area. They group was built by entrepreneurs, for entrepreneurs. Their goal is to connect and grow the burgeoning entrepreneurial community in Madison.
This is a group of young professionals that do business networking to grow their personal networks. They have meetings and events for you to attend.
National Association of Professional Women – Madison Chapter
They provide professional networking, career services, networking events, and educational tools to business women in the Madison, WI area.
Madison Network of Black Professionals
The MNBP is diverse group of individuals, interconnected by heritage, education, business, technology and social activities with the purpose of networking and sharing information of interest to African Americans in Madison.
High Tech Happy Hour
This is a group of high tech professionals in the Madison area who do networking at their monthly events. Come to their meetings to network with other technology professionals in the area.
Monona East Side Business Alliance
A non-profit source for business news, networking events, economic development resources, job creation, and getting connected in the Monona / East Side of Madison business community. They also provide networking events and professional development opportunities.
Young Nonprofit Professionals Network
YNPN – Madison is a membership organization that activates emerging leaders in the Greater Madison nonprofit community by connecting them with resources, people, and ideas.
The Wisconsin Women’s Network
They are an organization that promotes the advancement of women and girls in Wisconsin through communication, education, advocacy, and connections. They have mentorship programs and other events.
By plugging into business groups like these in our area, you’ll be able to get the resources and help you need to help grow your small business. If you have questions about any of these groups, please contact those groups directly.