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Get a first look at the Small Business Revolution Season 5 trailer at the Chamber’s Annual Awards event

This year’s Annual Awards Event will offer a first look at the Small Business Revolution Season 5 Trailer in anticipation of the full season being released in November. Amanda Brinkman, marketing expert and Small Business Revolution creator, producer and host, will provide the keynote address at this Thursdays on-line event. It is going to be a wonderful evening and an opportunity to recognize several amazing people and organizations from across the County and enjoy some great content.

The entire community is welcome to join us and participate in this year’s on-line program. You can register by going to www.chamberrsvp.org.Each year the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce recognizes the dedication and efforts of people and organizations countywide during our Annual Awards Banquet. This year we will do the same, but we will do it online.

The Virtual Awards Banquet is October 8 at 6 p.m. We will pay tribute to a number of individuals and organizations as follows: Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce Person of the Year Award will go to the Small Business Revolution Committee and the Business Selected for Season 5; the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce Economic Development Award is going to The Chautauqua Center. Community Service awards from each Community Chamber of Commerce will go to: Dunkirk – Roberto Fred Farm; Fredonia – Michele Joy; Hanover – Elizabeth Valvo; Jamestown – Russ and June Diethrick; Mayville-Chautauqua – Burl Swanson; and Westfield-Barcelona – James “Shaggy” Ruch.

The Chamber Virtual Awards Banquet is sponsored by Community Bank, County of Chautauqua Industrial Development Agency, Digitell, DFT Communications, Lawley Insurance, Media One Radio Group, National Grid, OBSERVER, and The Post-Journal.

We encourage all participants to get a delicious takeout meal from one of our many local restaurants or caterers and enjoy your own private ‘banquet’ experience while you watch our awards presentation online. Again, to register go to www.chamberrsvp.org.

SELLING ON-LINE IS AN IMPORTANT BUSINESS STRATEGY AND THE CHAMBER CAN HELP

The first, and for small businesses the most important, point in the Chamber’s five point focus is driving foot traffic and internet traffic to local businesses. We help drive foot traffic through a series of local events, marketing initiatives and gift card sales throughout the year. In this time of COVID-19, it is apparent that driving on-line sales and promotion is going to be critical to the survival of businesses and now and their ability to thrive in the future. Over the past several months many businesses changed how they market to and serve their customers. Online shopping is a daily reality in many homes. Online shopping and selling is here to stay. For small local businesses to compete with major online sellers and big box stores, it is crucial that the be visible on-line and offer ways for consumers to access their products and services on-line. The Chamber is working on a solution to make it easy for customers to find our local businesses on-line.

Online shopping has become so routine for consumers that they often overlook local retailers, where they may be able to get the same or similar items in their own community. As we have seen so many businesses struggling this year during a pandemic, a key goal for the Chamber of Commerce has been to help businesses increase sales in new ways.

We strongly encourage online sales by local businesses. It will increase the consumer audience, helps provide a convenient way to reach existing and new customers in new ways, and keeps revenue coming in the door, even if physical store hours are more limited. Studies in 2019 showed that 87% of shoppers began their product searches digitally, especially looking at big marketplaces like Amazon and eBay. As we all know from personal experience in 2020, online shopping became even more routine as people moved home for work and school.

The costs of online selling do not have to be a burden, and when businesses sell online you can also collect, measure, and act on customer data they collect through those sales. It creates opportunities for interaction with customers while also helping reach new customers, including those who may live far away from a physical storefront.

If you are a business that has never considered selling on-line, maybe has thought about selling online but has not taken the next step or already has an on-line store but needs some assistance, the Chamber of Commerce is here to help. We understand that for many businesspeople the challenge seems daunting and the costs seem high. As a result, we are creating new, convenient, and cost-effective solution to help local businesses in this wide-open field of eCommerce. Your business can get in on the ground floor of an exciting new opportunity here in Chautauqua County. To learn more, call our office at 366-6200 or 484-1101 or email us at rvoty@chautauquachamber.org.

OCTOBER IS MANUFACTURING MONTH

Manufacturing remains the backbone of the regional economy. Manufacturers in the Chautauqua, Cattaraugus and Allegany County service area of the Manufacturers Association of the Southern Tier produce $7.5 Billion USD in shipments annually. Manufactures pay out $837 Million USD in payroll. Large amounts of our manufacturing output is sold outside of our region, state and country, resulting in the movement of large amounts of new wealth into our area.

Per the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), manufacturing has the highest multiplier effect of any major sector. The NAM estimates that for every dollar spent on manufacturing another $1.81 is added to the economy. The NAM estimates that for every manufacturing worker, there are another four employees hired elsewhere. Manufacturing workers on average earn approximately $82,023 annually while the average compensation in all nonfarm industries is $64,609.

Over the next month we take time to celebrate this critically important economic investments with a variety of activities that honor our rich history of making products and highlight the careers and technology of today. A variety of programming will take place in our region and throughout the United States during the month of October as we celebrate our rich manufacturing history and its future. For information regarding manufacturing month activities in Chautauqua County reach out to Tim Piazza at tpiazza@mast-wny.com.

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