Broomfield Chamber of Commerce

BUSINESS/RESTAURANT RE-OPENING RESOURCES

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As the COVID-19 restrictions and closures are being eased, many of our local businesses are reopening their doors. And many restaurants will begin offering dine-in service again this week. However these establishments, and their customers experiences, are sure to look somewhat different than they did prior to the pandemic.

The Broomfield Chamber has created some images and signage that we our offering to local businesses to utilize in their re-opening efforts. Please feel free to use these in social media, or print for your windows or store-fronts. If you need PDF versions of the posters, please reach out to patrick.monacelli@broomfieldchamber.com.

The City and County of Broomfield also has a Blueprint to Reopening plan, and a Business Support Toolkit. You can find those resources here.

Let’s work together to make our community’s return to business successful. We are in this together, and we are Broomfield Business Strong!

       

     

BROOMFIELD CHAMBER, COMMUNITY FOUNDATION LAUNCH BROOMFIELD SMALL BUSINESS FUND

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Collaborative fund aims to help businesses rebuild as they re-open.

The Broomfield Chamber of Commerce, in conjunction with the Broomfield Community Foundation, is announcing the creation of a new relief and assistance fund designed to help local small businesses recover from the COVID-19 pandemic closures and restrictions.

The Broomfield Small Business Fund will distribute cash grants to assist eligible small businesses that are or may have closed temporarily, are having financial difficulty paying business rent and utilities, and/or are facing staff reductions or cuts in hours due directly to COVID-19 related market impacts.

“Broomfield has long been a great place to start and grow your business. Our community is a strong supporter of small business and now many of them are at risk of permanently going out of business through no fault of their own,” Said Sam Taylor, President and CEO of the Broomfield Chamber. “This fund will offer a lifeline for those companies that need a little extra help as they reopen their companies after being shut down because of the pandemic.”

“The Broomfield Community Foundation is proud to support the Broomfield Chamber of Commerce and our local small businesses throughout the medium and long-term recovery period to get back on their feet. The Broomfield Small Business Fund provides an easy solution for local residents and corporate supporters to assist fellow Broomfield businesses in a much bigger way,” stated Marianna Williamson, Executive Director of the Broomfield Community Foundation, which will be managing the fund and distributing grants.

Businesses that receive grants can use funds on direct business expenses such as payroll, inventory, supplies, lease or rent payments for non-residential business premises, and utilities for non-residential business locations. Fund grants are intended to promote business success, resulting in employee retention, supplement business revenues for payment of expenses, and sustaining business activity in the City and County of Broomfield.

Contributions are being accepted to help grow the fund at the Broomfield Community Foundation: PO Box 2040, Broomfield, CO 80038, with checks made out to Broomfield Community Foundation and memo Broomfield Small Business Fund. Contributions can also be made online at https://tinyurl.com/BSBFund2020. Information on applying for funding will be forthcoming, and questions can be directed to the Broomfield Chamber of Commerce at info@broomfieldchamber.com.

How to Build a Tribe for Your Business

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by Christina R. Metcalf

Have you ever noticed that there are influencers on social media who mention an item and no sooner than they do it sells out? The cynical side of me believes there are certain people out there who could talk about how chic dust bunnies are and suddenly there’d be a host of people growing their own dust bunnies like they were chia pets.

But it takes a special personality, doesn’t it?

Maybe when all business dealings were in-person. But now that a lot of them are online, it doesn’t take an over-the-top personality to cultivate a tribe. In fact, you cannot only do it easily for yourself and your business, but the pandemic is the perfect time to start building your tribe if you don’t already have one.

What Is a Tribe? Why Do You Need One?
If you have a lot of time on your hands–and you don’t even need that much, it’s a quick read–you need to look into the book on the topic by Seth Godin. But assuming you want the abbreviated version…

A tribe is your group of people that you have influence with.

A tribe is not a specific number of followers. A tribe is measured by level of activity. For instance, if you know a preteen on Instagram they may shout excitedly every time someone follows them or likes their picture. In fact, you may be surprised at the amount of emotional energy they can spend caring about an emoji. For most preteens, this is proof that someone likes them and they get validation from that. As a business owner, you should be past that type of ego enforcement. Instead, you want sales.

After all, likes aren’t going to pay your rent.

So for you, a tribe is an active group of people who are interested in what you’re posting and will act on suggestions you make. Tribes are the basis for influencer marketing. If you want more sales, you need to develop a tribe. When you do, they will help you with word of mouth marketing.

Ways to Build Your Tribe
COVID has prevented us from doing a lot of things recently. But hopefully what it has done has helped you become more engaged with your audience on social media. Ideally, you’ve used this time to start connecting with customers and potential customers. If not, here are a couple of ideas you could be doing to build your tribe:

• Go where your audience is. Figure out where they are on social media. If you don’t have accounts on those platforms, create them. If you have accounts that are no longer working for you and helping you connect, spend your conversation time elsewhere.
• Start following and commenting. You can post really incredible stuff on social media but you’re assuming that the platform is showing your content to the people you most want to see it. Unless you’re paying for the views, that’s not always happening. However, if you comment on posts, you’re guaranteed the owner of the account will see it. Just make sure that when you do you are adding to the conversation and not simply trying to sell.
• Be transparent. Don’t lie about who you are. Be open and honest.
• Be friendly and encouraging. People are drawn to a positive attitude and will avoid those who constantly complain. Be a bright light in the darkness. However,…
• Be real. While being positive is a good thing, you don’t want to appear fake. Share your struggles. But also share your plan for overcoming them. Show people that you’re human and ask them if they’ve ever had the same struggles. You might be surprised by the kind of way people open up.
• Listen and interact. When people do open up, do a little more than just liking their comment. Look to continue the conversation by asking them a question or reflect on their feelings and show them the empathy they are likely hoping for.
• Be you for the business. People find it easier to interact and connect with other people. Whenever you’re interacting on social media or posting blog posts, do so as an individual, not as a logo. If you want to use your business logo and name that’s fine. But make sure when you’re doing so that you give them your name too.

If this type of advice sounds familiar it’s probably because building a tribe for your business is similar to being a good friend. You want to be yourself and share the challenges and joys you have in life. Share your stories. Ask to hear theirs. These types of actions can have a very solidifying effect on your budding relationship. And a strong relationship will mean more revenue through word of mouth marketing in the future.

11 Ways to Make Money From Your Website

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by Christina R. Metcalf

If you have a website for your business, you may have an untapped treasure chest at your disposal. Even if you don’t make large amounts of money on your website, you can be bringing in something. This article will show you how.

Get a Website

If you don’t have a website and you think social media is enough, think again. Several businesses have had their social media pages/accounts shut down for no determinable reason. Even if your website is a one-page landing page for your business at least you have something that is yours. After reading this article, you may also decide you need a website for revenue reasons.

Making Money on Your Business Website

There are several ways to make money on your website but many of them require proof of a large, active audience. We’ll get to those in a bit. For now, let’s talk about how you can begin getting some revenue while you build your audience.

  • Produce something of value that you can charge for. What’s your area of expertise? Would people pay you for it? You can create a virtual product that you sell online. Examples of this include: an online course, an e-book, a worksheet or workbook, or virtual consulting or input as in the case of offering to review a submission from a client such as a resume review.
  • Accept donations. If you produce good, worthwhile content that your audience loves, you can add a donation or contribution button to your website. Some businesses have done this for their furloughed employees during COVID. Asking people to support what they love is an easy sell and often results in more revenue than placing a price on something like a downloadable offer. “Pay what you think it’s worth” is also a viable option.
  • Set up an E-commerce site. If you don’t have one already, consider selling things on your website. Your ability to do this will be largely based on the type of business you’re in but you can sell gift cards, consulting time/coaching classes, branded goods, products, how to classes, etc. Some businesses will even try a new item online before they bring it into their brick and mortar location. Selling online can also help bring in revenue while your actual store is closed.
  • Create a subscription service. Is there something you sell that you could create a subscription service with? You can use your expertise to create valuable content there’s disseminated on a regular basis or create an online community with the membership component people will pay to be a part of.

If you have a large audience and an active following, you have additional opportunities to make money on your website. You can do this through:

  • paid sponsorships
  • advertising
  • sponsored blog posts
  • affiliate links
  • job board postings
  • selling your email list
  • hosting webinars

Monetizing your website can be a strong course of action in these turbulent times. While many states are beginning the first stage of opening business at the moment of this writing, it is possible businesses will be closed again if case numbers escalate. If that happens, having the ability to sell products or services virtually can be the difference in you having a stream of revenue or not.

5 Ideas for Using Video To Save Your Business

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By Christina R. Metcalf

Economic difficulties aside, this is an exciting time for businesses and marketing. No, really. It can be.

We’ve been forced to try innovations we may have only talked about previously. Some of these include allowing our employees to work from home, finding new ways to engage with our audience, creating new offerings and services that meet the needs of our audience while also adhering to social distancing rules. It’s been exhausting but there’s a bright side too if you can start to see it for that.

Yes, this has been a challenging time but you also have the opportunity to lay the groundwork for things that will continue to serve you and your customers in the future. One of those things is video and if you’re not using it right now you’re missing an opportunity.

Whether your business is open or you were forced to close, you can use video to continue to interact with your audience and potentially create new revenue streams. Here are a few video ideas to get you started.

Why Video? Your Audience Is Online Constantly

These days with people working from home or those who are just looking for a distraction, you can count on your audience to be online. With kids at home and extra noise in the background, reading an article can be difficult but watching a video isn’t. Video offers you the ability to connect with your audience because they can see you as a real person. Try these ideas:

Walk Your Audience Through Your Offerings

You may not be allowed to open your business storefront to the public but you can walk them through your offerings virtually. For instance, if you sell home decor take a video tour of your showroom. Talk about individual pieces that are for sale. Offer specials on delivery or allow people to keep things on hold until after the stay at home orders expire. If you serve food, walk them through your menu. Show your specials.

Conduct flash sales

Go live and feature your items. Give each item a number and talk briefly about them. Encourage those who are interested in an item to respond in the comments section. When the broadcast is over, the deals are gone. This fast-paced, auction-like sale gets people engaged and excited about your offerings. It can also entice them into making an emotional purchase.

Introduce Your Faithful Employees

A lot of what is driving purchases today is the thought that we’re helping out the business owners and their employees to continue to stay in business.  For instance, many people are ordering local now more than ever because they like the idea of helping neighbors. Play to that by introducing the people they’re helping.

Give Your Audience Something To Do

If your business doesn’t sell food or items that are easily showcased, you can create a video that will help teach someone how to use your services or do something that involves what you sell. For instance, if you sell paint you can create a series of videos teaching people how to paint pictures, furniture, rooms, focal points, etc.

Thank Your Supporters

If you have the kind of business where none of these ideas work for you, you can always thank the people who have been loyal to your business through video. This could be your employees, past customers, vendors, or business partners. Showing your appreciation is infectious and most people respond to that type of messaging.

Video is a very strong marketing component. It helps people feel connected to your business. It may also provide an additional stream of revenue if you’ve been forced to close your doors due to the pandemic. Think about classes or online help you could provide through video. Stay in touch with your audience. Let them continue to see your face during this difficult time. If you do, you can be assured you’ll remain top of mind for your customers and they’ll help out in the ways that you ask.