Attention on Downtown Klamath Falls (and Klamath County in general) from outside investors, visitors, and convention travelers is increasing. That's great news, but it comes with some responsibility if we want to become a respected host!
As examples, the following are large events that we are aware of, and will take place in and around Downtown:
These events, along with large construction and renovation projects are starting to grow the snowball of attention on our area - now's the time to make sure we're putting our best foot forward!
Downtown Klamath Falls is in great shape - our residents, employees, property owners and business owners take great pride in presenting a community that is welcoming to visitors. With the number of Downtown-focused events increasing, we now have an opportunity to fine-tune our presentation and practice being "Downtown Ready!"
We'll share more info on how we can work together to do that fine tuning, but here are some general things to consider that might take a bit longer to finish:
We are excited to see so much downtown investment recently, and the pride in how our Downtown looks is really starting to show! We look forward to working with you to keep that going. Let us know how we can help.
Date: June 1, 2022
Contacts: Darin Rutledge, KFDA Kendal Bell, KFDA (Board Member)
Phone: 541-539-6212 541-591-0024
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com
Publication Date: For immediate release
KFDA Awarded $200,000 Revitalization Grant to Support Rehabilitation of the Arcade Hotel
The Klamath Falls Downtown Association (KFDA) announces today that it has received an Oregon Main Street Revitalization Grant (OMSRG) in the amount of $200,000 to support the rehabilitation and reopening of the Arcade Hotel in Downtown Klamath Falls.
Forefathers Capital, an investment and development group that includes a Klamath Falls resident, completed its purchase of the property on May 31 and will begin work to restore the property back to its historic use as a hotel. The group owns other properties in the Klamath Falls area and has experience in developing hotel properties and working with historic buildings. The grant will provide capital for the initial stages of a multimillion-dollar renovation effort expected to be completed in 2023. When complete, the property will be reopened as a 22-room boutique hotel.
“This will be a transformational project for downtown Klamath Falls and represents the first significant historic preservation project in Downtown Klamath Falls in over two decades” said Darin Rutledge, KFDA’s executive director. “The historic Arcade Hotel has been vacant for a number of years and we felt that it was running out of chances for any meaningful preservation opportunities.”
Robbie Janda, spokesperson for Forefathers Capital, relayed his team’s enthusiasm for the project. “We are thrilled to have been given the opportunity to revitalize such an important landmark in Downtown Klamath Falls. The OMSRG was an essential part of getting this project off the ground, and without it another piece of history would likely have been lost. A special thanks to KFDA for their expertise in helping build out this complex capital stack and consulting on downstream incentives. We’re looking forward to a continual partnership with KFDA as we endeavor to return the Arcade Hotel to prominence on Main Street.”
KFDA evaluated a number of potential projects to include in its grant application, but the Arcade Hotel stood out as the project that would be most competitive. “This project checks all the boxes that this grant program is built on – saving a historic building, catalyzing community investment, creating jobs, increasing property value and tax revenue, and creating vibrancy in our downtown. It will also provide a new lodging product that is unique in Klamath County,” said Kendall Bell, Chair of KFDA’s Design Committee and grant writer.
The Oregon Main Street Revitalization Grant Fund was authorized by the Oregon Legislature in 2015 to provide capital to stimulate downtown revitalization projects around the state. It was first funded in 2017 with a $2.5 million allocation, which was increased to $5 million in 2019. The fund was replenished with a $10 million allocation in 2021 to support a “catch up” cycle for 2022 and the regular grant cycle in 2023. Creation of the fund and its succeeding allocations are the result of grassroots advocacy efforts on behalf of Main Street organizations such as KFDA around the state. Bell, one of KFDA’s founding members, was instrumental in the creation of the fund in 2015, testifying in Salem on multiple occasions throughout the legislative process.
Grant awards are made every two years in odd years, although the allocation in 2021 included an additional $5 million for 2022 since the allocation was postponed during the pandemic. KFDA has received a grant award in all three cycles to date. Grants in 2017 and 2019 supported upper floor redevelopment projects that resulted in 25 new residential units in Downtown Klamath Falls.
The Oregon Main Street Revitalization Grant is administered through the Oregon Parks & Recreation Department’s Oregon Heritage division and is available only to local organizations affiliated with Oregon Main Street. Eligible projects, which must be located within an Oregon Main Street district, include rehabilitation/ renovation of existing properties, compatible new construction, and in some cases, purchase of existing properties.
“We’re obviously thrilled to have received this grant three cycles in a row,” said Rutledge. “It speaks to the support of our community for its downtown and aligns with our mission to strategically balance the need for economic vitality with the desire to preserve the historic character of our downtown. We are excited to work with Forefathers Capital to further that mission and to catalyze additional investment in Downtown Klamath Falls.”
Click here to see the full list of statewide awards.
About the Oregon Main Street Revitalization Grant: The grant program was created during the 2015 legislative session and placed with the Oregon State Historic Preservation Office. The legislation established a permanent fund for the Oregon Main Street Revitalization Grant and provided an initial infusion of funds from the sale of lottery bonds. The legislature included the Oregon Main Street Revitalization Grant in the lottery bond package approved in 2017. The funds must be used to award grants to participating Oregon Main Street Network organizations to acquire, rehabilitate or construct buildings to facilitate community revitalization. The program also requires that at least 50 percent of the funds go to rural communities as defined in the bill.
About KFDA: Klamath Falls Downtown Association (KFDA) is an accredited member of the National Main Street Center and Oregon Main Street programs and is an IRS-approved 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Among many principles, KFDA believes in downtown revitalization, historic preservation, shopping local and supporting the small businesses that are the cornerstone of our community. Every day, we advocate on behalf of not only the downtown merchants, but the community as a whole so that our rich history is preserved, and future generations are proud to call Klamath Falls home. The work of KFDA is made possible in large part by the contributions of its Major Supporters. Champion-Level Supporters: Amerititle; Fairfield by Marriott Inn & Suites; Fisher Nicholson Realty; KCEDA; KLADFM92.5; Klamath County; Klamath Insurance Center; Oregon Tech; Pacific Power; SmithBates; The City of Klamath Falls; Tillberg Studio & Gallery. And Promoter-Level Supporters: Discover Klamath; NIS Labs; Thai Orchid; Holiday Market; Rodeos Pizza & Saladeria; The Residences@621; Bell Hardware; Craft3; Klamath County Association of Realtors; Klamath County Developmental Disabilities Services.
SALEM — Oregon Main Street announced its 2021 “Excellence on Main” award winners today and released videos of all the recipients. A total of twenty-one businesses, projects, partners, and people were recognized. Darin Rutledge with the Klamath Falls Downtown Association (KFDA) received the Executive Director of the Year award. Th video of the award winner can be found at https://youtu.be/XBQnSlEMHLQ.
“Main Street executive directors are dedicated professionals who care deeply about their communities and work countless hours attracting the people and financial resources necessary to make them more livable and vital,” said Sheri Stuart, State Coordinator, Oregon Main Street. “Darin Rutledge with the Klamath Falls Downtown Association is the embodiment of this professionalism and commitment.”
Joining KFDA in 2018, Darin embraced his position with great enthusiasm and brought a skill set that has elevated KFDA’s organizational capacity. Under his leadership, the board has broadened their reach by creating a structure to include key partners. These partnerships have helped keep KFDA at the forefront of many revitalization efforts. Darin also helped restructure the membership base growing it by 67% just before covid-19 struck. This has been maintained throughout the pandemic with expertly crafted initiatives. Darin initiated swift and effective Covid response. His "Main Street Resiliency" page was a welcome site for the vulnerable business community and an early model for other communities in Oregon. Through Darin’s efforts, KFDA also partnered with the city in developing and executing several Covid relief programs such as a restaurant relief gift certificate program, on street short term restaurant take-out parking, business grant programs, and distribution of PPE. And, Darin helped KFDA develop and implement activities to take the place of cancelled community events including a modified fall festival, a virtual Christmas tree lighting ceremony, and a fun virtual annual meeting and membership drive. Darin also jumps in to help on projects and can be found planting flowers, moving sandwich boards, manning Third Thursday Booths, and passing out water during hot weather street festivals. Darin is always on alert for opportunities for local businesses. It may be a grant situation, a potential for a cross promotion or a collaboration that will benefit both parties. And he keeps in close contact with business and building owners to better understand their needs or concerns. Darin’s impact stretches beyond the local community. He has actively participated in advocacy efforts for the National Main Street Center, helped developed a tri-state recovery action plan template, and is a respected member of the Oregon Main Street Network.
Oregon Main Street’s Excellence on Main Awards were created in 2010 to recognize the efforts of those who work day-in and day-out to revitalize Oregon’s historic downtowns and traditional commercial neighborhoods. 13 other towns in Oregon were honored with awards this year.
“2020 was a particularly challenging year on Main Street,” said Sheri Stuart, state coordinator, Oregon Main Street. “Our main street communities demonstrated amazing resiliency, working tirelessly to support, encourage, and nurture the people, businesses, and property owners in their communities. These awards recognize the outstanding efforts of local programs in creating and supporting projects and activities that exemplify Oregon Main Street’s mission to build equitable, livable, and sustainable communities that will grow Oregon’s economy while maintaining a sense of place.”
The wide range of awards is reflective of the comprehensive Main Street Approach™ to downtown revitalization developed by the National Main Street Center. This model is used by the communities participating in the three-tier Main Street Track of Oregon Main Street Network. From 2010 to 2020, communities participating in the Performing Main Street and Transforming Downtown levels – the top two tiers – have seen $125 million in private building improvement projects, $124.6 million in public projects, 1,347 private rehab projects, 639 net new businesses, 163 business expansions, 126 business acquisitions, and 3,961 net new jobs. In addition, 250,348 hours of volunteer time has been contributed to local main street organizations in the top tiers.
Oregon Main Street is part of Oregon Heritage, a division of Oregon Parks and Recreation Department. For additional information, visit www.oregonmainstreet.org.
Additional coverage from Klamath Falls Herald & News:
Additional coverage from Klamath Falls News: https://www.klamathfallsnews.org/news/rutledge-named-executive-director-of-the-year?rq=rutledge
Full list of awards, including video links: https://www.oregon.gov/oprd/OH/pages/awards.aspx#two
Klamath Falls, Oregon (May 26, 2021) – The Klamath Falls Downtown Association (KFDA) has been designated as an accredited Main Street™ program for meeting rigorous performance standards. Each year, Main Street America and its partners announce the list of accredited programs to recognize their exceptional commitment to preservation-based economic development and community revitalization through the Main Street Approach™.
“We are proud to recognize this year’s 889 nationally accredited Main Street programs that have worked tirelessly to advance economic vitality and quality of life in their downtowns and commercial districts,” said Patrice Frey, President & CEO of Main Street America. “During an incredibly challenging year, these programs demonstrated the power of the Main Street movement to drive impressive local recovery efforts, champion small businesses, and foster vibrant downtown districts. I am inspired by their hard work and confident that these accredited communities will continue to help their downtowns flourish in the next stages of recovery.”
Klamath Falls City Manager Nathan Cherpeski noted KFDA’s leadership in the revitalization of Downtown Klamath Falls in his praise for the milestone. "The Klamath Falls Downtown Association is a great partner for the City of Klamath Falls. They are key to our successful downtown. This recognition is well deserved. Thanks to KFDA’s hard work and dedication, this achievement is only one of many the future will bring. Well done and congratulations!"
In 2020, Main Street America programs generated $4.14 billion in local reinvestment, helped open 4,356 net new businesses, generated 14,988 net new jobs, catalyzed the rehabilitation of 8,488 historic buildings, and clocked 983,702 volunteer hours.
Main Street organizations use the Main Street ApproachTM as a basic framework that supports locally customized revitalization through transformational strategies in four interconnected areas – Design, Organization, Promotion, and Economic Vitality. KFDA President Nic Phair noted the importance of the Main Street ApproachTM and how it helps local organizations succeed. “The framework that the Main Street ApproachTM provides has been a useful guiding tool for ways to improve our downtown. The Oregon Main Street staff are amazing to work with and we consider them a key partner. We are very fortunate to have this symbiotic relationship with Oregon Main Street – along with other Main Street organizations using the same framework – that allows us to give and take from each other to make each of us stronger.”
KFDA’s performance is annually evaluated by Oregon Main Street, which works in partnership with Main Street America to identify the local programs that meet 10 national performance standards. Evaluation criteria determines the communities that are building meaningful and sustainable revitalization programs and include standards such as, fostering strong public-private partnerships, documenting programmatic progress, and actively preserving historic buildings.
“Our organization has been doing tremendous work on behalf of Downtown Klamath Falls for more than a decade. This national accreditation affirms the impact of the partnerships we’ve leveraged and recognizes the efforts of our board members, volunteers, and downtown stakeholders to build a solid organization that will continue to serve Klamath Falls for decades to come,” said Executive Director Darin Rutledge.
[End of Release]
ABOUT KLAMATH FALLS DOWNTOWN ASSOCIATION
The Klamath Falls Downtown Association (KFDA) is an accredited member of the national Main Street America program and is a “Performing Main Street” member of the Oregon Main Street network. Among many principles, KFDA believes in downtown revitalization, historic preservation, shopping local and supporting the small businesses that are the cornerstone of our community. Every day we advocate on behalf of downtown businesses, residents, property owners, workers, and visitors so that our rich history is preserved and future generations are proud to call Klamath Falls home. KFDA is supported primarily through donations, local government contracts, and annual support from local businesses. KFDA recognizes the following “Champion” and “Promoter” level supporters for their generous ongoing support: Amerititle, Fisher Nicholson Realty, KLAD 92.5 FM, Klamath County Economic Development Association, Klamath Insurance Center, Oregon Tech, Pacific Power, SmithBates, Bell Hardware, Discover Klamath, Holiday Market, NIS Labs, Rodeos Pizzeria & Saladeria, and The Residences @ 621.
ABOUT MAIN STREET AMERICA
Main Street America has been helping revitalize older and historic commercial districts for 40 years. Today, it is a network of more than 1,600 neighborhoods and communities, rural and urban, who share both a commitment to place and to building stronger communities through preservation-based economic development Since 1980, communities participating in the program have leveraged more than $89.57 billion in new public and private investment, generated 687,321 net new jobs and 154,435 net new businesses, and rehabilitated more than 303,836 buildings. Main Street America is a program of the nonprofit National Main Street Center, a subsidiary of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. For more information, visit www.mainstreet.org.
Pedlet Pilot Project Funded by Klamath County Tourism Grant
and Klamath Falls City Parks Scheduled to be Installed at Mermaid Garden Café
Klamath Falls, OR – May 18, 2021 – Blue Zones Project-Healthy Klamath has been working in collaboration with the City of Klamath Falls and S&S Manufacturing to produce the first pedlet, scheduled to be installed Tuesday, May 18 at Mermaid Garden Café.
In order to create infrastructure to foster increased walkability and social health in downtown Klamath Falls, Blue Zones Project applied for funding through the Klamath County Tourism grant and partnered with the City of Klamath Falls Parks Department. As one of the awarded projects, both agencies have been working with S & S Manufacturing to build a pedlet. A pedlet is designed similar to a boardwalk that connects to the sidewalk and provides a diversion around customers enjoying the outdoor space.
Locally, the pedlet will serve as a seasonal structure that adds a thoroughfare for downtown pedestrian, to be extended around outdoor dining and retail spaces in front of businesses. Pedlets have been a unique way of expanding businesses without compromising ADA accessibility, sidewalk access, or the businesses being able to easily access customers. In recent years, other communities have implemented similar projects to help create more vibrant outdoor spaces and increase business for participating retailers and restaurants.
With collaboration from the City of Klamath Falls and Klamath Falls Downtown Association; the Blue Zones Project Built Environment Committee has been working to fund a pilot prototype pedlet that will be mobile, versatile, easy to assemble, store, and disassemble. In working with S&S Manufacturing a prototype has been constructed with an aluminum foundation and Trex decking to create a safe, durable structure.
The structure is scheduled to be installed May 18th at Mermaid Garden Café. After extensive research and piqued interest from the beginning, Mermaid Garden Café was chosen as the pilot location due to their engagement and investment in the project. Since the first pedlet is a pilot project, the funding structure is different, to gauge interest and success of the prototype. After manufacturing, the pedlet will be the property of the City of Klamath Falls and will be a part of a pedlet/parklet Program they are developing. In the near future we hope to have additional pedlets installed at more businesses. If you are interested in learning more about pedlets and built environment, please reach out to Kelsey Mueller at firstname.lastname@example.org or to learn more about the downtown pedlet/parklet program, Kristina Mainwaring at the City of Klamath Falls (KMainwaring@klamathfalls.city).
About the Blue Zones Project
Blue Zones Project® is a community-led well-being improvement initiative designed to make healthy choices easier through permanent changes to a city's environment, policy, and social networks.
Established in 2010, Blue Zones Project is based on research by Dan Buettner, a National Geographic Fellow and New York Times best-selling author who identified five cultures of the world—or blue zones—with the highest concentration of people living to 100 years or older. Blue Zones Project incorporates Buettner's findings and works with cities to implement policies and programs that will move a community toward optimal health and well-being. Currently, 56 communities across North America have joined Blue Zones Project, impacting more than 3.8 million citizens. The population health solution includes two Health Districts in California; 15 cities in Iowa; Albert Lea, Minnesota; the city of Fort
Worth, Texas; Corry, Pennsylvania; Brevard, North Carolina; the Walla Walla Valley in Washington; and communities in Southwest Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Oklahoma, Oregon, and Wisconsin. Blue Zones Project is brought to Klamath Falls with support from Sky Lakes Medical Center, Klamath County, City of Klamath Falls, and Cascade Health Alliance, in partnership with Sharecare, Inc. and Blue Zones, LLC. For more information, visit bluezonesproject.com.
Klamath Falls is Oregon’s first Blue Zones Project Demonstration Community. To learn more about Blue Zones Project, contact the Blue Zones Project team in Klamath Falls at
BlueZonesProject@healthyklamath.org, or visit www.healthyklamath.org/bluezones.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 16, 2020
Governor Brown Announces Free Masks and Gloves for Small Businesses
Today Governor Brown announced a new program to provide masks and gloves to small business in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Governor, in partnership with the Oregon Legislature’s Emergency Board, allocated $10 million from the federal CARES Act funding for the purchase of protective supplies. The state of Oregon is fulfilling orders at no charge until resources are depleted.
“We want our businesses to be able to operate in the safest manner possible right now so that we can get out of this health crisis, and get them back to full operations,” said Oregon Governor Kate Brown. “Our small businesses are the hardest hit, so we want to help them get the tools they need at no cost to them.”
Businesses with fewer than 50 employees that are headquartered in Oregon with principal operations in Oregon are eligible. Business Oregon — the state’s economic development agency — and the Department of Administrative Services are collaborating to create the order and distribution process. Businesses with fewer than 10 employees will receive a box of 200 gloves and 100 masks, with larger businesses receiving up to 500 masks and 800 gloves. For now, businesses are limited to one order, with additional orders possible at a later date depending on availability.
In addition to the small business program, the Early Learning Division (ELD) is providing supplies such as gloves, disinfecting wipes, masks and more to child care providers around the state as part of the effort. The Governor set aside $1.3 million from the federal Governor’s Education Emergency Relief Fund to purchase supplies for this critical service. Child care providers have been operating under emergency conditions since March and are following increased safety and health guidelines. Child care providers approved by ELD to operate Emergency Child Care are eligible to order supplies and will need a license/provider number to do so.
“Since the beginning of the pandemic, child care providers have been doing critical work to support families and other businesses in Oregon,” said ELD Director Miriam Calderon, “These items will help providers continue operating with a focus on safety for children, parents and their staff.”
The order form is online and is now accepting orders. Businesses and child care providers can access the form here: https://supplyconnector.org/states/oregon/free-ppe/
Media Contact: Nathan Buehler, 503-689-3559.
Business Oregon, the state's economic development agency, invests in Oregon businesses, communities, and people to promote a globally competitive, diverse, and inclusive economy. The agency's services span rural community development and infrastructure financing; business retention, expansion and recruitment; export promotion and international trade; investments in industry research and development and entrepreneurship; small business assistance; and support for arts and cultural organizations. Learn more at www.oregon4biz.com
From SCOEDD Media Release
The South Central Oregon Economic Development District (SCOEDD) announced that it has launched an Emergency Business Assistance Grant Program for small businesses, non-profits and sole proprietors in Klamath and Lake Counties. SCOEDD created the program in collaboration with Business Oregon, Klamath County, Lake County, and the City of Klamath Falls. Funds from the State of Oregon have been matched with local dollars to pool total grant resources of $440,000.
The program is targeted at proprietors who have 1 to 25 employees and have not been able to secure financial assistance from the CARES Act through the PPP or EIDL programs.
“While the Federal support programs have helped numerous businesses throughout the region, there are many who still need assistance,” said SCOEDD executive director Betty Riley. “Some of our smallest employers and those who have simply created a job for themselves remain without the financial support they need to survive.”
In addition to the requirement that the business have its headquarters and principal operations in Klamath or Lake County, Oregon and be current with their state and local registration and licenses, grant applicants will also need to be qualified by any of the following circumstances:
Base grant amounts will be determined by the number of employees. Proprietors who wish to apply for more than the base amount will be required to provide detailed records of fixed expenses. Base grant amounts start at $2,500 and go up to $12,500. Grant funds may be used for any business-related operating expense necessary in reopening or operating.
“While we wish we had endless resources to support our businesses in this crisis, the program is limited. We will do our best to meet applicant needs, but we expect to have more requests than we do funds. So, if we are over-subscribed, completed applications will be placed into a drawing and awardees will be determined by lottery,” described Riley. “All grant awards will be notified on Monday, July 20, 2020.”
Applications will be accepted until 5:00 pm on July 15, 2020. For detailed program requirements and the downloadable electronic application, please visit SCOEDD.org.
Applications can be returned via email to email@example.com or in two locations. One at the SCOEDD office at 803 Main Street, Suite 202 in Klamath Falls and the other at the Lake County Finance Office at 513 Center St., Lakeview. Questions can be answered by calling 541-884-5593.
May 27, 2020 - Klamath Falls Downtown Association (KFDA) announced today that this summer’s Third Thursday street fair series has been canceled due to restrictions on public gatherings that are expected to remain in place throughout the summer. The organization is, however, proceeding with plans for other activities and events that could be appropriately produced given the restrictions.
“We are of course disappointed that one of the community’s most popular annual events is not going to take place this summer, but guidance from the state indicates that large gatherings will be limited at least through September. In the past couple seasons, average attendance at Third Thursday has been around four to five thousand with nearly 100 vendors. At that scale, our board couldn’t see a viable path to successfully producing the event this summer, even if restrictions are relaxed ahead of schedule,” said KFDA Executive Director Darin Rutledge. KFDA has already received some vendor applications for the event and will be working with those vendors to offer refunds for prepaid vendor fees.
In light of restrictions on the size of public gatherings, the organization is working on plans for smaller events throughout the summer, including a revamped version of its popular live music series at Sugarman’s Corner. “Downtown is a gathering place – that’s a big part of what makes it special. With Third Thursday not an option this summer, we want to continue to be creative in providing opportunities for people to gather and to showcase our downtown businesses and amenities. This summer that’s just going to look a little different as we adapt to provide options for people to get together safely and responsibly with respect to the public health concerns that we’re currently facing,” said Rutledge. KFDA will also expand its collaboration with community partners to produce summer events as a way to share resources and highlight other community organizations who have been extremely limited in their ability to operate the past couple months. As an example, KFDA plans to continue its partnership with Klamath Folk Alliance to schedule performers for live music events.
Announcements and information are shared through KFDA’s website at www.downtownklamathfalls.org, through its Facebook page at www.facebook.com/DowntownKFalls, and through an electronic newsletter (visitors can sign up on the website).
KFDA provides its events and programs largely through sponsorships and annual contributions from its members, and recognizes the following “Champion” and “Promoter” level sponsors for their generous ongoing support: Klamath Insurance Center, Amerititle, Oregon Tech, Fisher Nicholson Realty, KLAD 92.5 FM, Pacific Power, KCEDA, SmithBates, Discover Klamath, Thai Orchid, NIS Labs, Holiday Market, Rodeos Pizza & Saladeria, The Residences at 621, and Bell Hardware.
Darin Rutledge, Executive Director
Klamath Falls Downtown Association
Governor Brown and President Trump both recently released initial frameworks for reopening Oregon's and America's economy (you can click on the images below to see the details of what was released). The plans at both levels are still being fleshed out, but here's what we know so far, at least for the Oregon framework:
UPDATE 4/29: We found a very cool resource for some strategies and ideas you should think about while considering how to reopen your business. Check out the information below, then visit Reopen Main Street for some other great ideas!
With the framework in place and conversations ongoing, it is likely within the next few weeks we'll see tangible activity toward reopening the economy. With that said, we want to make sure you are starting to think about your plans for reopening. Specifically, here are some areas you should be thinking about.
We are continuously scanning fo resources additional resources that would be helpful to our small businesses as they consider reopening. For example, restaurants and bars should visit this Relaunch Toolkit for Restaurants + Bars from Streetsense. We've added this link to our Business Resilience page, and will provide access to additional resources when they become available.
... Even (Especially) Right Now
Scott Allen, General Sales Manager
Local Radio Advertising right now - Hit the brakes or mash on the accelerator? The answer depends on where you want to be when life returns to normal. One popular adage says, “When times are good you should advertise. When times are bad you must advertise.”
There are several reasons that advertising is important during times of crisis. I’ll share a couple here.
Probably most important is to project an image of stability to our customers. Peace is the most valuable thing we can offer to customers during times of great uncertainty. It is helpful to let people know what’s changing in our business and why. Customers need us to explain how to do business with us in the new environment. We shouldn’t abandon them to figure things out on their own. If we do, they’ll quickly find another business who is reaching out to them. When normal comes back that will be where they stay. If you want to come out of this with your customer base intact you should talk to a marketing professional about you messaging and about how to advertise in this environment.
When businesses cut back on or eliminate their advertising, the brand loses its “share of mind” with consumers, with the potential of losing current – and possibly future – sales. An increase in “share of voice” typically leads to in an increase in “share of market.” An increase in market share results, with an increase in profits. Accept the fact that the profit will almost certainly come at the end of this crisis. That may also be the time that you need it most. Good advertising will improve how you come out of this. There is no better position than 1st when it comes to the battle for “share of mind”. When you advertise thru a crisis and make improving position a priority. Good advertising will improve how you come out of this.
No sales pitch here but you need to know that local radio is the best way to communicate with your customers right now. Local radio has a connection with our community and your customers that no other medium can match. Local radio stations have personal relationships with your customers…even more personal than your relationship with your customers. We can keep you connected to them at a time when they need you and you need them most.
It is unlikely that any of us are going to come out of this better than we went in. Things are going to be tough but if we continue to talk to our customers along the way there is a 100% chance, we’ll come out of it together. For our customers and listeners sake we’re going to get on the accelerator.