CHAMBER COLUMN: Chamber stayed active in 2020
2020 was an interesting year, to say the least. Like all businesses, the Stanly County Chamber of Commerce had to adjust to the impact of an unprecedented pandemic. It was a challenging year and we didn’t get to do all the things we planned; however, we were able to continue to promote and communicate to and for our members.
We would like to share some highlights from 2020. We had a great annual meeting at the end of February, the Chamber hosted a successful Stanly County Chamber Classic in August and in November we hosted a virtual Reverse Raffle, a partnership with the Albemarle Rotary Club. We’ve enjoyed incredible experiences with our Leadership Stanly class and it’s great committee of volunteer leaders in early 2020.
We implemented new strategies in response to the Covid-19 pandemic including a resource link to our website —stanlychamber.org/help-during-coronavirus/ — with helpful links to find updated business, government and health resources as well as restaurant listings with take-out and delivery options.
The Chamber promoted and shared information about several informational webinars and town hall meetings and hosted Virtual Town Halls with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to provide information for small businesses.
We provided additional information and training, offering free weekly webinar trainings. We included training on platforms like LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook marketing along with email and content marketing strategies.
The Chamber released the Smart Restart Guide, a comprehensive guide to reopening after the pandemic, developed within the guidelines and with recommendations from the CDC, local, federal and state agencies
We partnered with the Stanly Community College’s Small Business Center, providing free and confidential business counseling to help Stanly County business owners recover from the effects of COVID-19. The Reboot, Recover and Rebuild program was established to provide small businesses with counseling and helpful resources during the crisis and beyond.
We offered an “Open for Business” promotion. We are providing signs to our members to place in a prominent window or outside their business to let everyone know they are “open for business.” We have taken photos of each of our merchants with their signs and used this as a promotion for them throughout our social media channels and our website.
We utilized our weekly newsletter and our website to communicate community events, news from and for our members. Check out the community events under the heading of news and events on stanlychamber.org. Please email us anything going on with your business and we will add it to our website and our weekly newsletter.
Our social media sites are used for sharing information on our members and fun promotions and giveaways. Make sure you are following us for the latest from our members and the Chamber.
We’ve added several new members this year and appreciate the continued support from current members that have remained active with us.
All of these things were possible because of the unwavering support of our active leadership board, dedicated volunteers, committed sponsors and our wonderful chamber members.
We look forward to 2021 when we can again meet and network in person and continue to partner with other local organizations and businesses to promote our wonderful county.
Sandy Selvy-Mullis is president and CEO of the Stanly County Chamber of Commerce.