Category

Education

Video: Chamber Hosts 2021 State of the City of Kenmore Address from The Lodge at St. Edward Park

By Chamber News, Community Events, Community News, Education, Events, Kenmore, Legislative, Uncategorized

The Bothell Kenmore Chamber of Commerce was pleased to host its annual State of the City of Kenmore event to inform its members and the community of the latest news and information regarding current Kenmore projects, to look back at the accomplishments and challenges of 2020, and to discuss the future plans and goals for Kenmore and its residents and businesses.

This year’s event was held Live (virtually) from The Lodge at St. Edward Park on May 6, 2021. We were treated to interior views and some of the features inside these wonderful spaces at this newly opened lodge in Kenmore! We thank the 100+ people that joined us live online to hear the City of Kenmore Mayor David Baker & City Manager Rob Karlinsey deliver the 2021 address. The two outlined the city’s accomplishments, as well as the primary goals and focus for the city and council for 2021. We heard valuable information, and were reminded of the many things the City accomplished last year during extremely unusual times. We also learned more about the many plans for Kenmore’s future.

Video of Address is Available Below…

We extend a special thank you to Mayor Baker and Mr. Karlinsey for their informative and inspiring presentations, Kenmore City Council, and our Presenting Sponsor and location host The Lodge at St. Edward Park, Event Sponsors Puget Sound Energy and Port of Seattle, and Supporting Sponsors Cascadia College, Andrea Schafer, Edward Jones, WhatsSup Stand Up Paddle & Kayak, ABS Valuation and Heidi Braund, Real Living Northwest Realtors for their support. We also wish to thank both Carmin Dalziel, Chamber Chair, and Dr. Eric Murray, President of Cascadia College for MC’ing our event, all our Board members, and our Chamber staff for their hard work and contributions.

Thank you to all who made our 2021 State of the City of Kenmore a successful event!

Kenmore, Washington

Video: Chamber Hosts 2021 State of the City of Bothell

By Bothell, Chamber News, Community Events, Community News, Education, Events, Uncategorized

The Bothell Kenmore Chamber of Commerce was pleased to host its annual State of the City of Bothell event to inform its members and the community about the latest news and information regarding current Bothell projects, a recap of the unique year that was 2020, and what plans and goals the city has for the future.

This year’s event was held virtually on April 28, 2021 and we thank the 100+ people that joined us online to hear City of Bothell Mayor Liam Olsen & Interim City Manager Erin Leonhart deliver the 2021 address. The two outlined the city’s accomplishments, as well as the primary goals and focus for the city and council for 2021. We heard valuable information, and were reminded of the many things the City accomplished last year during extremely unusual times. We also learned more about the many plans for Bothell’s future.

Video of Address is Available Below…

We extend a special thank you to Mayor Olsen and Ms. Leonhart for their informative and inspiring presentations, Bothell City Council, and our Presenting Sponsor Community Transit, Event Sponsors Puget Sound Energy and Port of Seattle, and Supporting Sponsors Cascadia College and Alexa’s Cafe & Catering for their support. We also wish to thank Carmin Dalziel, Chamber Chair for MC’ing our event, all our Board members, and our Chamber staff for their hard work and contributions.

Thank you to all who made our 2021 State of the City of Bothell a successful event!

We invite the community to join us on May 6 for the State of the City of Kenmore Virtual Event where Kenmore City Manager Rob Karlinsey will deliver the address. This event will be held online and advance registration is needed for access.  We look forward to seeing you there.

Bothell, Washington

Resources For Businesses & Employees Affected by Coronavirus (COVID-19)

By Bothell, Chamber News, Community Events, Education, Kenmore, Uncategorized

Page Updated 4/19/2021

 

The Bothell Kenmore Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to supporting our local businesses with resources to assist you in working through the challenges related to the COVID-19 pandemic.  If you have questions or need anything at all we encourage you to reach out to us.

News! County Statuses –  King & Snohomish Counties are currently in Phase 3 of the new “Safe Start”

Moving into Phase 3 permits:

Resuming some public activity, such as:

  • Outdoor group recreational sports activities (50 or fewer people)
  • Recreational facilities at less than 50% capacity (gyms, public pools, etc.)
  • Professional sports (horse racing, baseball, etc.) without audience participation
  • Restaurants and taverns at less than 75% capacity with table size no larger than 10
  • Bar areas in restaurants and taverns at less than 25% capacity
  • Indoor gyms at less than 50% capacity; theaters at less than 50% capacity
  • Customer facing government services (telework remains strongly encouraged where possible)
  • Libraries
  • Museums
  • All other business activities not yet listed except for nightclubs and events with no more than 50 people.

Full Information Available Here

New!  State of WA Dept. of Agriculture Small Business Assistance
Farmer’s Markets, Craft Breweries, Wineries & Distilleries, and Agri-Tourism Farms – The WA State Dept. of Agriculture is currently accepting applications for small business assistance grants to help agriculture businesses and organizations in sectors that have been economically hurt due to marketplace disruptions created by the necessary public health measures during the COVID-19 pandemic. The deadline to apply is April 26. Learn more & apply

Restaurant Revitalization Fund/Grants
Learn more about this program to assist restaurants negatively affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Shuttered Venue Operators Grant
This grant provides emergency assistance for eligible venues affected by COVID-19.

New! Webinar: “Ask the Experts re: PPP”
Designed to help get the answers you need to maximize the $284 billion Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) forgivable loan opportunity. Featured experts include representatives from the SBA and SBDC along with regional lenders from Business Impact NW and Banner Bank. Register to watch anytime

New! Governor Jay Inslee announces that effective April 15, every person age 16 and over in Washington will be eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccination. 

New! Find Vaccine Locations Here
Effective April 1, 2021 the State of WA has introduced a newer, more extensive and frequently updated website for finding vaccine locations.

New! Vaccine factsheets available in 49 languages – “Getting Vaccinated For Covid-19” 
These Covid vaccine factsheets are easy to read, 2 pgs, and cover the what, why, how, and when of getting vaccinated. There is also assistance for those that are hearing or audio impaired.
Visit the Washington State Department of Health’s website for the list of 49 available languages, and phone numbers for assistance. (Under the section “Information On”, click “Vaccine” then “Getting Vaccinated: Additional Languages”)
– To request this document in another format, call 1-800-525-0127. Deaf or hard of hearing customers, please call 711 (Washington Relay) or email: civil.rights@doh.wa.gov.

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act to help small businesses keep workers employed during the pandemic and economic downturn. This round of the PPP continues to prioritize millions of Americans employed by small businesses by authorizing up to $284 billion toward job retention and certain other expenses through March 31, 2021, and by allowing certain existing PPP borrowers to apply for a Second Draw PPP Loan. Here are some resources to assist you with the program…

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), in consultation with the Treasury Department, announced today that the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) will re-open the week of January 11 for new borrowers and certain existing PPP borrowers.  Learn more here

Businesses To Require Face Coverings For Customers & Employees
Businesses in WA state are prohibited from serving customers who aren’t wearing face coverings per a proclamation by Gov. Jay Inslee and Sec. of Health John Wiesman. This went into effect on July 7, 2020.

Bothell Special Permit to Turn Parking Into Outdoor Dining
Food & beverage businesses within the City of Bothell may apply for a permit allowing for the temporary change of use from parking to outdoor seating.  Expand your table and chair capacity and serve more customers. Limits apply. Download Permit Information Here

Bothell Special Permit to Conduct Business on Main Street Closed Area
One block of Main Street in downtown Bothell is now temporarily closed to vehicular traffic to allow businesses to expand their working footprint outdoors. The street, sidewalk and flex/parking spaces will be open for dining and retail sales. Businesses can apply for a permit. Get More Information Here

⇒ NOTE: Our Resources page is now organized by category. We encourage you to scroll down and fully explore to locate all resources. New information will be noted.

Operating Your Business - Requirements, Restrictions, Checklists & Tips

As some businesses are permitted to remain open and others will again soon we encourage you to plan, review your internal policies, purchase supplies as needed and commit to being in compliance for successful operations. The following resources can help you get started:

All Industries: Requirements For All Businesses – State of Washington, Governor’s Orders
Industry-based. Learn what will be required of your business.

Checklist for Businesses with Suspected or Confirmed Cases of COVID-19 – Washington State Department of Health
Employer reporting requirements, employer responsibilities, actions to take for suspected or confirmed cases, etc. Updated December 11, 2020.

Safe Cleaning and Disinfection Guidance for Public Spaces – Washington State Department of Health

Communication Resources: Messaging Materials, Sample Social Media Postings & more – Centers for Disease Control
Find posters, notices and more conveying important messages about Covid-19 in multiple languages. You will also find sample social media postings on a wide variety of topics related to Covid-19.

Checklists and Guidelines For Safe Start Open Plan
Great resource for employers in planning your re-opening strategy.

Guide To Re-Open Your Business – U.S. Chamber of Commerce
Articles with helpful strategies including creative office space strategies, screening employees, encouraging customer compliance and many more.

Back To Work Toolkit
Toolkit for re-opening the office and getting back to work.

Article: Communicating Your Reopening To Customers
Your customers will need to feel safe doing business with you. Learn ways to communicate your efforts to help them feel confident.

Business Signage Toolkit
Print these posters for businesses. Ie. Shopping Tips, What Is 6 Feet?, We Do Take-Out, etc.

Hygiene Signage For Businesses
Print these posters from EvergreenHealth to remind your employees and customers of safer habits.

WA State - Business, Employer & Employee Resources

WA State Coronavirus Response Resources Page
Extensive list of state resources for businesses and employees.

Facial Coverings Are Mandatory Statewide: Effective June 26, 2020
Governor Inslee announces that every Washingtonian in an indoor public space, or in an outside public space when unable to physically distance from others, will be legally required to wear a face covering. Read Full Details Here
Unemployment Insurance, Benefits & Taxes

Tips from the Employment Security Department…

Preparing fully before applying will help the process go smoother
Everyone who is eligible will receive benefits – and it will be paid retroactive to their date of eligibility

Employment Security Department
Main Page for Unemployment Information in WA State

Webinars: Introduction To Unemployment Insurance

Unemployment benefits now available for Self-Employed and Independent Contractors in the State of Washington

Employment Security Department
Video of Shared Work Program overview. Shared Work is a special program that helps businesses avoid layoffs. Video also available in Spanish.

WA State Employment Security Department: Layoff Assistance
“The Employment Security Department (ESD) can: Help businesses and workers facing major layoffs, and help prevent layoffs from happening.”

Working Washington Emergency Grants

Working Washington Small Business Emergency Grants

New!  ROUND 4 OPEN NOW for GRANTS
State of WA – Working Washington Grants: Round 4 Opens March 29. Round 4 offers grant relief funds to small for-profit businesses, especially those that were required to close due to public health and safety measures. Priorities for funding are:
– Businesses required to close.
– Businesses with lost revenue as a result of closure.
– Businesses with added expenses to maintain safe operations.
– Equitable distribution of grant funds across the state and to businesses owned and operated by historically disadvantaged individuals.
Full details available here (Click on the blue links inside the box on the page for more information.)

Other WA State Resources

WA State Department of Revenue
Business Relief During COVID-19 Pandemic

WA State Department of Health: Workplace and Employee Resources & Recommendations

Updated Regularly: Businesses Currently Hiring – WorkSource Washington
Essential Workforce Openings (Health care, Grocery, etc.)
King County Jobs
Snohomish County Jobs

WA State Department of Commerce: COVID-19: Insurance For Businesses and Events

Washington Small Business Development Center (WSBDC) Business Resiliency Toolkit
Disaster planning information, guide, and emergency procedures workbook.

Covid-19 Legal Clinic For Small Businesses & Non-Profits – Communities Rise
Virtual clinic helps small businesses and nonprofits connect with a lawyer to navigate the legal issues they are experiencing due to Covid-19.

Webinar: COVID-19 Business Impact Webinar
Originally hosted on 3/23/20. Learn what resources are available for you and your business as we navigate how COVID-19 continues to impact our state and the economy. Speakers include: WA State Labor & Industries, U.S. Small Business Administration, WA State Dept. of Commerce, WA State Employment Security Dept., WA Small Business Development Center, UW School of Public Health.

Governor Inslee's COVID-19 Resources & Stay Home Stay Healthy Guidelines

Watch All Governor Jay Inslee Press Conferences re: COVID-19 Coverage

 

Governor Inslee Announces Washington’s COVID-19 Recovery Plan – A Safe Return To Public Life
Learn about the Governor’s 3 Overriding Goals.

Governor Inslee Issues Protections For High-Risk Workers
The proclamation provides older workers and those with underlying health conditions a series of rights and protections.

WA State List of Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers
The Governor has designated “Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers” to help state, local, tribal, and industry partners as they work to protect communities, while ensuring continuity of functions critical to public health and safety, as well as economic and national security.

King & Snohomish Counties, & Local - Business, Employer & Employee Resources

Bothell – Special Use Permits for Outdoor Dining
City of Bothell is temporarily permitting restaurants to conduct outdoor dining in approved parking lots and closed roads.

Grants for Bothell Small Businesses
Check for status of grant fund. Grants are being provided for emergency financial support through the Bothell CARES Small Business Grant for qualified small businesses negatively impacted by the mandatory closing of non-essential businesses due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Key Indicators of Covid-19 Activity in King County
This dashboard provides a snapshot of several useful indicators, or measures, related to COVID-19 activity in our community and its impact on our health and our hospitals. The indicators help determine if current actions are adequate, need to be strengthened, or might be carefully relaxed.

Grants Available From Snohomish County For Small Businesses
Check to view status of grant program. Apply today to see if you qualify for up to $25,000 in grant funding for your small business located in Snohomish County.

King County & Seattle Public Health: Planning For A Coronavirus Pandemic
A Guide For Businesses & Organizations

County Health Officer Directs Residents To Use Face Coverings
Seattle & King County Health Department strongly urges face coverings in all indoor public places including grocery stores and other businesses, as well as outside settings where maintaining six feet of social distancing is difficult. This directive will go into effect May 18, 2020.

Public Health – Seattle & King County
Guidance for retail businesses and service operators to protect from the spread of COVID-19

Snohomish County Info For Business/Employers
An extensive list of resources and materials for employers and employees related to COVID-19.

Farmer’s Markets – Snohomish County Information For Markets & Vendors
Operational requirements, checklists and more.

City of Kenmore Announces Local Face Covering Directive
All persons and commercial establishments within Kenmore’s boundaries are asked to comply with the Public Health Seattle & King County Directive to wear a face covering that covers the nose and mouth in most public settings.

Business Rent Reduction Request Template Letter (Open in WORD for editing)
Courtesy of Business Australia

Puget Sound Energy Announces Relief Measures 

Washington HealthPlanfinder
The state’s health insurance exchange has opened a special enrollment period for qualified individuals who are or become uninsured.

Chamber Member’s Pay-It-Forward Campaign To Support Our Local Businesses
Although many of our members are experiencing financial hardship, others are asking how they can help. To service this request for kindness, we have created a way to “Pay it Forward” with a donation towards another member’s Chamber dues.

Workforce Education Opportunities
Get trained to go to work, find a new career, or advance your skills.

Federal & US - Business, Employer & Employee Resources

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act to help small businesses keep workers employed during the pandemic and economic downturn. This round of the PPP continues to prioritize millions of Americans employed by small businesses by authorizing up to $284 billion toward job retention and certain other expenses through March 31, 2021, and by allowing certain existing PPP borrowers to apply for a Second Draw PPP Loan. Here are some resources to assist you with the program…

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), in consultation with the Treasury Department, announced today that the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) will re-open the week of January 11 for new borrowers and certain existing PPP borrowers.  Learn more here

SBA Releases Instructions To Calculate & Apply For PPP Loan Forgiveness
Includes Forgiveness Application Form and instructions on how to apply for forgiveness of their PPP loans, consistent with the CARES act.

Small Business Guide to the CARES Act
Complete Information & Links by U.S. Senate Commitee on Small Business & Entrepreneurship

Families First Coronavirus Response Act
FFCRA helps workplaces by reimbursing American private employers that have fewer than 500 employees with tax credits for the cost of providing employees with paid leave taken for specified reasons related to COVID-19.

Paycheck Protection Plan

New! Webinar: “Ask the Experts re: PPP”
Designed to help get the answers you need to maximize the $284 billion Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) forgivable loan opportunity. Featured experts include representatives from the SBA and SBDC along with regional lenders from Business Impact NW and Banner Bank. Register to watch anytime

Webinar: Loan Forgiveness – What Every Business Should Know About PPP Loan Forgiveness
Hear from a panel of speakers about how business owners can set themselves up to best utilize their PPP funds – including tips and tricks to navigating this new program and best positioning your business.

Quick Answers & Preparation List re: Paycheck Protection Program
Infographic Worksheet by U.S. Chamber of Commerce

SBA – Small Business Administration / EIDL

Webinar: SBA Loans & Grants Available Under the New CARES ACT
Join representatives from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) as they review the new funding opportunities available including the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Loans, the SBA Debt Relief and Express Bridge Loans, and the Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) and Emergency Economic Injury Grants.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Relief Options & Funding Programs – U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA)

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Small Business Guidance & Loan Resources
The federal Small Business Administration (SBA) may be able to provide assistance through the Economic Injury Disaster Loans program to businesses that have suffered substantial economic injury in an eligible disaster area.

SCORE Coronavirus Small Business Resource Center – A mentorship & counseling division of the SBA
A central hub of up-to-date information and best practices for small business resilience at this time. The completely free resource center includes financial support resources, live and on-demand educational content and access to remote mentoring.

COVID-19 SBA Disaster Loans
Distributed by: Office of Congressman Rick Larsen

U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Coronavirus Small Business Guide & Resources – U.S. Chamber of Commerce

U.S. Chamber of Commerce: Workplace Tips for Employees
General workplace health and safety information.

Centers For Disease Control

CDC Guidance for Businesses
Recommended strategies for employers to use now, response plans and more.

Grants & Industry Specific Relief Opportunities

Note: Some relief grants have open enrollment and application deadline periods. Many also offer rounds 2 and 3 of grants so we have left the links below available for you to review and check for availability. These sites also offer other resources that may be of assistance to you. We encourage you to familiarize yourself with these organizations and their services.

New! WA State Dept. of Agriculture Small Business Assistance
Farmer’s Markets, Craft Breweries, Wineries & Distilleries, Agri-Tourism Farms – The WA State Dept. of Agriculture is currently accepting applications for small business assistance grants to help agriculture businesses and organizations in sectors that have been economically hurt due to marketplace disruptions created by the necessary public health measures during the COVID-19 pandemic. The deadline to apply is April 26. Learn more & apply

New! Restaurant Revitalization Fund/Grants
Learn more about this program to assist restaurants negatively affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

New! Shuttered Venue Operators Grant
This grant provides emergency assistance for eligible venues affected by COVID-19.

Currently Closed – State of WA – Working Washington Grants:
Full details available here (Click on the blue links inside the box on the page for more information.)

City of Lynnwood Small Business Relief Grants
Check status of grant fund. Funds for eligible businesses may be used for existing operating expenses, including business rent or mortgage, payroll, utilities, inventory, marketing, and improvements to meet social distancing requirements.

Local Marketing Grant Program
Check the status of grant fund. Sound Publishing is offering grants for digital display and print ads to qualifying businesses.

Workforce Education Grants
Students enrolled in a professional/technical program may be eligible for these grants.

Facebook Small Business Grants
Facebook is offering Small Business Grants to qualifying businesses located in King County.

ArtsWA Grants
ArtsWA grants support the work of arts organizations across Washington State.

The Plate Fund
Food Service Workers that LIVE in King County
Apply for financial assistance from The Plate Fund. Donations are also needed to add to this fund.

Non-Profit Relief Funds
Learn about the relief efforts and additional federal policies to provide resources for nonprofits and the communities they serve.

GreenRope Offers Free CRM Programs For Qualifying Non-Profits
Customer relationships are key in business and especially during this unusual time.

Cultural Relief Fund
Grant funds for cultural workers who have suffered financial hardship from the COVID-19 outbreak or have an innovative idea that shows promise in supporting other King County residents may be available to you or your organization.

Google Ad Grants & Free Resources For Non-Profits

Restaurant Employee Relief Fund
Grants of $500 will be awarded on a first-come first-served basis starting April 2 to those individuals who meet the prescribed eligibility criteria, as reviewed and verified by the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF).

James Beard Foundation Food and Beverage Industry Relief Fund
Open to independent restaurants with under 100 employees. Apply here for temporary relief funds up to $15,000.

Personal Protective Equipment & Medical Supplies

Medical Supplies:
WA State – If you can manufacture any of these items: gloves, gowns, swabs, masks, face shields, vials, etc. Washington needs you. Learn more here: https://coronavirus.wa.gov/how-you-can-help
FEMA – Interested in Selling or Donating Medical Supplies to FEMA? If you want to…
– Sell medical supplies or equipment to the federal government Email Here
– Have medical supplies or equipment to donate Provide Details Here
– Are a private company that wants to produce a product related to the COVID response Email Here
Further… The FDA is interested in hearing from manufacturers who may be able to help mitigate potential shortages of PPE by increasing U.S. availability of such devices. These manufacturers may Email FDA Here

World Health Organization

Human Resources / Personnel Assistance

Now is the time to review your workplace policies regarding leave, working remotely, wage and hour, and so forth. Chamber Member HR Kinections’ Mia Wyatt is ready to assist you.

Quick Information re: CARES, Unemployment, Families First Coronavirus Response Act, Payroll Protection Program
Slides from HR Kinections’ presentation at Chamber General Meeting on April 23.

Preparing Your Business For COVID-19

Working Remotely, IT Support, or Cybersecurity

If working remotely is in your plans then consider these resources and Chamber Members for assistance:

CMIT Solutions of Bothell, Lynnwood, and Seattle North

Greenlight Techs, LLC

15+ Tools & Resources For Working Remotely

Additional Coronavirus Community Resources

New! Governor Jay Inslee announces that effective April 15, every person age 16 and over in Washington will be eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccination. 

New! Find Vaccine Locations Here
Effective April 1, 2021 the State of WA has introduced a newer, more extensive and frequently updated website for finding vaccine locations.

New! Vaccine factsheets available in 49 languages – “Getting Vaccinated For Covid-19” 
These Covid vaccine factsheets are easy to read, 2 pgs, and cover the what, why, how, and when of getting vaccinated. There is also assistance for those that are hearing or audio impaired.
Visit the Washington State Department of Health’s website for the list of 49 available languages, and phone numbers for assistance. (Under the section “Information On”, click “Vaccine” then “Getting Vaccinated: Additional Languages”)
– To request this document in another format, call 1-800-525-0127. Deaf or hard of hearing customers, please call 711 (Washington Relay) or email: civil.rights@doh.wa.gov.

Support Our Restaurants! Rally behind these local restaurant, bakeries, wineries & breweries!
Here is a list with links to all our chamber members in the food and beverage industries. You’ll also find a list of different ways you can support these businesses.

Local Libraries Offer Online Resources For Professionals, Students and Families
Learn about the many FREE resources available ie. movies, magazines, audio books and so much more from King and Snohomish County libraries, and how to get a quick library card!

Video: Make A Mask In 45 Seconds
Slow the spread folks! Learn how to make a mask with household items in just 45 seconds from the U.S. Surgeon General. CDC is recommending face masks for everyone when out in public.

EvergreenHealth Patient Update – Coronavirus Information

HealthPoint – Coronavirus/COVID-19

Immediate Clinic MultiCare – Coronavirus Health Alert

Pacific Medical Centers – Novel Coronavirus, COVID-19

WA State Department of Health – 2019 Novel Coronavirus Outbreak (COVID-19)

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Communicating Your Reopening To Customers

By Bothell, Chamber News, Community Events, Education, Kenmore, Uncategorized

Written by: Elizabeth Tackett, Marketing Manager
Bothell Kenmore Chamber of Commerce

As a business reopening you likely have new information that needs to be communicated to your clients and customers. This new information might include: increased health and safety measures, different products, services, or procedures, new delivery or appointment requirements, etc.

Will customer’s choose you or someone else?  Do you have their confidence?

Due to Covid-19 your clients and customers likely have an increased need to feel confident that your business is taking measures to keep them healthier and safer. A solid communication plan conveys this message, and assists consumers in choosing where they will do business.  Therefore communicating the right messaging is critical to your business’ success moving forward. It could mean the difference between someone choosing your business or someone else’s.

Use these tips and ideas to help you craft, communicate, and deliver your newly updated information to your audience.

How To Craft Your Reopening Messaging

  1.  Document your polices, procedures, and changes that you want to communicate to your customers.
  2.  Streamline this information – think Twitter and make it short and concise.
  3.  When creating written formats, use bullet point, table, or infographic styles to keep the messaging on point.
  4.  When creating a video, keep it short – 2 mins max. You can use slides or photos with narrative, an employee addressing customers, or a video of employees performing their new tasks.
  5.  Where needed, create a one-sentence intro that conveys the “why” of your actions.
    Ie…  “We care about your safety and are pleased to be taking the following measures to keep you healthier.”
  6.  Tensions are understandably higher so if you need to ask them to do something be kind and polite, and offer an alternative.
    Ie… “To keep everyone safer we kindly ask that those experiencing symptoms please place your order online. We’ll deliver it to your car later.”

Notes:
Remember to show your empathy and understanding during this disconcerting time – your customers need to know you care.
Also, you may need to create different messages for different market segments. A real estate agent will likely need one message for buyers and another for sellers. And, your online customers will need different messaging from your in-store shoppers.

Where To Share

Websites

Adding your message to your website is a must. Home, Product and Appointment pages are the obvious choices, but don’t forget the less obvious such as Menus, Shipping details, About Us, and FAQs. Map your customer’s navigation and make sure all points along their paths are covered.

Several methods can be used such as:

  • Header banners inviting viewers to click through to a designated page, PDF, or video for full information.
  • Focused one-sentence messages at key points along the navigation path reminds customers of your additional efforts.  You want to keep confidence levels high throughout their visit and the sales process.
    Ie… Inform buyers on product and shipping pages that your employees wear protective equipment while handling and packaging their products.

Tip:  Increase links to your Contact Us page in case customers have additional questions.

Social Media & Other Online Identities

  • Share your message on all your social media channels
  • Share in industry and community groups
  • Post at regular intervals and update your message as needed.
  • Consider paying to boost your post or place an ad
  • Remember your review and referral sites, online ordering apps and stores, and other online identities.

Ask Your Customers To Share Your Messaging

Word-of-mouth is an important marketing tool so enlist your customer’s help in getting the word out about your reopening. Encourage customers to…

  • Share their positive experiences with your business
  • Check-in to your location on social media
  • Post photos/videos of the products they purchase
  • Leave positive reviews

Email Marketing, Text Messaging and Chats

  • Inform everyone on your email and SMS lists with a designated message.
  • Add messaging to future newletters/emails in the form of headers or footnotes inviting readers to click through to your designated page or video to learn more about your new policies or changes.
  • Remember your auto-responders! Update your contact us, order, messenger, and subscriber auto-responses.

Additional Customer Contact Points

Any place that your company comes into contact with a customer is an opportunity to remind them of your changes and increased efforts. Here are some additional places to add your message:

  • Appointment reminders and thank you notes
  • Signs on reception desks, and in waiting, dressing and treatment rooms
  • Point of entry and street signs
  • Shipping documents including packing slips and receipts
  • Telephone recordings
  • In-store announcements for large public businesses
  • Email signatures
  • Advertisements
  • Press Releases
  • As a guest speaker on a blog or show

Train All Customer Service Employees

Inform your customer-contact employees of any new methods, procedures, changes, etc. to build and maintain customer confidence, and to be able to respond to inquiries as needed.

  • Have employees verbally explain and physically show clients the changes as necessary. Lee Perry of Arena Sports Mill Creek, WA reminds us to “Give your customers a few extra minutes of attention – they will appreciate it. Show them where the hand sanitizers are stationed and tell them when they arrive what your company is doing for them.”
  • Consider preparing scripts or FAQ reference sheets for employees to keep on hand.

In closing…

Remember that the confidence level that your clients and customers have in your business will help determine your success moving forward. The above is not a complete list of ideas but will hopefully get your own ideas flowing and help you reopen with success.

If you have questions, please feel free to reach out to the Chamber. We’re here to support you.

~ Bothell Kenmore Chamber of Commerce

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Local Libraries Offer Online Resources For Professionals, Students, and Families

By Bothell, Chamber News, Community Events, Community News, Education, Kenmore, Uncategorized

Our local Libraries – King County & Sno-Isle Counties – are fabulous, online, modern and free!  Improve your business skills, learn a new hobby, school your kids, read the latest best sellers, and entertain the family with their huge selection of online resources.

Enjoy choosing from audio books, eBooks, movies, TV shows, music, magazines, newspapers, encyclopedias, databases and more.  Best part… it’s easy!

STEP 1
   You’ll need the following:

Internet capable computer, tablet, or phone
Internet access

Please note: The following is for people who live in King, Snohomish and Island counties. If you live outside of these counties contact your local library system.

STEP 2
   Get an Online Library eCard, it’s an easy 1-page application, links are below:

King County Library Cards
Sno-Isle Library Cards

STEP 3
    Start exploring your cool downloads here:

King County Online Library
Sno-Isle Online Library

STEP 4
    Get the Apps if applicable to view/hear your selections (these links will be available inside the online libraries and will depend on what you’re accessing ie. books vs. music)


Questions?
  Staff are available to help you via email, phone, and chat.

King County Libraries Support
Sno-Isle County Libraries Support

 

Photos courtesy of King County Library System and Sno-Isle Libraries.

Important Community Notice

By Bothell, Chamber News, Community Events, Education, Events, Kenmore, Uncategorized

Our top priority here at the Chamber is the welfare of our community including our residents, visitors and businesses. We have been closely monitoring the current health situation and based on information and recommendations from state and county health departments we are making adjustments as follows:

Upcoming Chamber Events


Large Events

State of the City of KenmoreRescheduled from March 11 to May 13.
All tickets will be transferred and refunds will be available upon request through April 15, 2020.

March General MeetingCancelled.
We look forward to seeing you at the next General Meeting on April 23, 2020.


Small Events

Ribbon Cuttings – We will be checking with hosting businesses and will update you as soon as possible.

Committees – Updates will be sent to committee members / posted on our website.

April Events

We are keeping these on the schedule for now and will update you as necessary.


Chamber Office & Visitor Center

We will remain open between the hours of 10:00am and 2:00pm Monday thru Friday.  We will notify you of any changes.

We are offering flexibility to our team with remote working.
Interested in offering this to your staff?  View 15 + Tools & Resources For Working Remotely

 

Support Our Local Businesses

We all need to support each other during this challenging time. Please remember to shop local businesses – they need you! Stop in, shop online, or call to buy gift cards for future purchases.

 

Additional Resources

Resource List for WA State Businesses and Workers

Workplace and Employee Resources & Recommendations

WA State Department of Health

Snohomish County Info For Business/Employers

CDC Guidance for Businesses

EvergreenHealth Patient Update

 

If the Chamber can support you in any way, please let us know. We are here for you. Our contact information is below and we look forward to hearing from you.


Bothell Kenmore Chamber of Commerce
& Bothell Visitor Center
10120 Main Street, Suite 201, Bothell, WA 98011
425-485-4353
www.BothellKenmoreChamber.org

Please follow us for additional updates

Facebook.com/BothellKenmoreChamber
Twitter.com/BothKenChamber
Linkedin.com/company/7950118
Instagram.com/BothellKenmoreChamber

15+ Tools & Resources For Working Remotely

By Bothell, Chamber News, Education, Kenmore, Uncategorized

In today’s business environment the desire and need to work remotely is growing. Planning and implementing now the right tools for your business to work remotely will increase transitional success, optimize productivity, reduce stress, and minimize costs.

There are many factors to consider – with each company and organization having different needs, but here are the Chamber’s suggestions for basics to get you started.

Tip!  Below this article you will find additional resources including names of programs and apps, and Chamber members who may be able to assist you.

 Virtual Phone Calls/Meetings/Conferences
Keep relationships strong with video-style calls and meetings (think Zoom.) Viewing a person’s smile, facial expressions and body language go a long way in maintaining good professional relationships. Multiple people from numerous locations can be participating simultaneously, and sessions can often be recorded for future reference. (See resources below.)

 VPNs
If your company uses its own network ask your employer if you can utilize a Virtual Private Network (VPN) to remotely access the company’s network.

  File Sharing
Eliminate many challenges of working remotely by storing your files and photos on cloud services. Doing so allows you to access them from other computers/devices as long as you have access to the internet. Tip: Avoid unsecured wi-fi when accessing company files, emails, etc. And be sure your anti-virus software is always up to date. (See resources below)

Sending Large Files
Not everyone will be on your file sharing cloud service or company network. For those times when you need to send a file larger than your email capacity consider sending via a large file program like Dropbox. This often happens when sending multiple photos. (See more resources below)

  Team Organization
Businesses can organize projects requiring team effort with programs like Microsoft Project or Trello. Create projects with to-do lists, resources, notes, and more. View progress of tasks, and updates will sync across all devices.

  Remote Desktop
Access your computer as if you are in front of it. (See resources below)

   Remote Policy
Establishing a clear understanding of employee and employer responsibilities, as well as a plan of work will go a long way in creating a successful work remote program.

Chamber member Jeff Chapman with Greenlight Techs, LLC shares his favorite resources…

“If your work allows you to work from home, or if you are too sick to go into work, here are a couple of things to think about. Most of these options work best if you plan ahead! If you have an IT department, ask what they can do for you!”

1. File Sharing – Work on all your files and have them already updated when you get back in to work. Or being able to work on the same file with your colleagues. Possibly at the same time!
a. One Drive
b. Drop Box
c. Google Drive

2. Meeting/Conferencing – Talk to your colleagues and get things figured out. Being able to share computer screens make these a better option than a phone call.
a. Skype
b. Google Hangouts
c. Facebook Messenger

3. Remote Desktop – This is a great option if you can do it. All your files and programs from your work computer.
a. Log Me In
b. Windows Remote Desktop

Questions? Need assistance with a successful remote work plan? Contact these Chamber Members for more information:

Greenlight Techs, LLC

CMIT Solutions of Bothell, Lynnwood & Seattle North

HR Kinections

 

Photo of 2019 Scholarship Winner Joshua Perez - Bothell Kenmore Chamber

Chamber Awards 2019 Scholarship

By Bothell, Chamber News, Education, Kenmore, Scholarship, Uncategorized

It is with great pleasure that we introduced Joshua Perez of the Northshore School District as the Bothell Kenmore Chamber’s 2019 Scholarship Winner!

The Chamber’s 2019 scholarship is for $2,000 to be used in pursuit of higher education.

Joshua is a bright and caring student who has worked hard in school and graduated in 2019 from SAS, and volunteered with the Boys & Girls Club and 21 Acres. His future plans include attending Lake Washington Technical Institute for a Degree in Interactive Media.

Joshua was all smiles as we presented him with the award at the Chamber’s Luncheon event held on May 8, 2019 at the Inglewood Golf Club in Kenmore. In attendance was his mother and father, school district representatives, and about 65 additional luncheon attendees.

Special thank you’s to JD Davis of Sundance Energy Services for sponsoring and to all who donated to our scholarship.

We look forward to seeing what Joshua accomplishes, and wish him well in his future endeavors.

Congratulations Joshua!

Please visit our Scholarship page to make a donation or learn more about the Chamber’s Scholarship Program.