Volume 28, Issue 5 | September 2020
2020 Board of Directors

Steven Sweigert
Celeste Miller
Wes McCabe
Taylor Bank Treasurer
Olive Mawyer
OLEA Marketing Secretary
Sarah Yonker

Laura Morrison

Allen Duncan

Mike Burrier

Derrick Elzey

Andrea Hastings

Ashley Sloan Haldeman

September 12 - Community Expo at the OP Community Center
**See notice below**

September 26 - Annual Corn Hole Tournament at the Berlin Lions Club
To stay up on the ever changing happenings and partner news, make sure to follow us on Facebook
Stay up to date on all our doin's. You can add your events too!

Sweet Shack
Rescue Heating & Air Conditioning

President's Corner
I feel like our year is finally starting around here! Our first actual 2020 event, the Flounder Tournament, was a huge success, our Community Expo is happening Sept 12, and our annual Business Directory will finally arrive.

As you can imagine, this year has brought many changes to our partnership list. Sadly, a few businesses decided to close while others felt they were unable to continue with us. More than anything, we stand for community! We continue to support them and are here should anyone ever need us in the future. Having said that, we are very excited that we have gained many new partnerships in the past few months as well. I hope we are able to gather soon so that they may get to meet their fellow partners.

This month our annual Business Directory will be ready for distribution. Better late than never. If your business space allows, we'd love for you to have some on display and for the taking. Our residents and visitors really do use this guide for their services.

Whether you are in the hospitality industry, financial, trades, or retail, know that we see you! You're efforts have been Herculean this year so far and we commend you. Hang in there and stay well.
The State Health Department will allow us to continue, as scheduled, with our Community Expo at the Ocean Pines Community Center ONLY if it is held outside and without any food or beverages.

So, we will plow forth on Saturday, September 12, 2020 from 9am - Noon in White Horse Park across from the Community Center. This will allow for more space per exhibitors as well as an easy flow between the always popular Farmers Market and you!

We will still provide tables, however, please bring your own chairs, table coverings and tents, should you wish. Be prepared for not that cleanest "floor" and possible wind. DO NOT provide food or beverages for our visitors.

Our awesome sponsors, Herl's Bath and Home Solutions, BrightStar Care, PNC Bank, and WMDT 47 will enjoy being located in the pavilion.

RAIN DATE: Should Sept 12 bring us inclement weather, we will attempt the exact same set up the following Saturday, September 19.

PLEASE wear masks, bring sanitizer for your tables, and practice social distancing as best as you can. Also help us encourage the same from our visitors.

Thank you for rolling with the punches that 2020 continues to throw!
Why are there logos and ads in the newsletter?

The first week of each month (if I'm on the ball), over 800 businesses, media outlets, community leaders and residents receive this newsletter. Now that we are in an electronic format, we will be sharing it on social media as well, adding to the number of eyes. Do you want those eyes to see your logo or ad?
Call us! 410-641-5306
Ocean Pines Just Got a Bit Sweeter

Sweet Shack opened for business on July 17th, 2020 as a sweet dream for a local family, who own & operate this wonderful ice cream and frozen yogurt shop. Things got a little tastier at the Manklin Creek Shopping Center in Ocean Pines, Maryland as they launched to a reception that was much like the delights Sweet Shack serves, beyond expectations! 

Michelle Dell’Aquila-Reed and her family received positive feedback almost immediately! Nothing makes it a sweeter day than satisfied customers! 
Michelle, her husband, Matt Reed, their daughter, Madeline & their 3 sons, Matthew, Jr., Michael and Max operate the Sweet Shack together as a family. They serve an ever changing variety of soft serve and hand dipped ice creams, with unique flavors emerging constantly. They also have other delectable frozen delights. 

Michelle relocated to the Eastern Shore of Maryland from New York in 2010. She previously worked managing resort restaurants and during this time was dealt a life-altering blow as she was diagnosed with stage four Cancer. “I’m living through my own thing,” is the Sweet Shack owner’s response.

Following the covid-19 outbreak, the family decided to actualize a long-held dream with the new business venture. They loved the spot in the Manklin Creek Shopping Center, so they went for it when the location became available for rent. Living out a childhood dream, Michelle says the goal is to leave Sweet Shack customers savoring quality soft serve and hand-dipped ice cream, sundaes, milkshakes, frozen yogurt, gelato and Italian ice. Sweet Shack does 24 flavors of soft serve and frozen yogurt. They’re all made with essential oils.
Sweet Shack is a realization of a youthful fascination with a comparable operation in the Catskills. Growing up Michelle’s parents had a summer home in Pennsylvania. There was a little ice cream spot in the middle of nowhere that had 24 flavors. The warm weather visits to the ice cream merchant left an indelible impression. It was fascinating the way they made them and so it became the inspiration for Sweet Shack here in Ocean Pines, Maryland.

After all, Sweet Shack is located minutes from the beach and 24 flavors seemed like the way to go! Higher quality ingredients are also the focus for Sweet Shack’s soft serve production. Expectations are for frozen cakes and more! Keep an eye on social media – Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat.

We invite you to visit us at 11312 Manklin Creek Road, in Ocean Pines, MD 21811. Enjoy a little sweetness in your day at the Sweet Shack! 
For years, our neighboring Chambers have trusted and offered CQI's services to their members. We are proud to announce that your OP Chamber has now partnered with CQI. As an energy co-op, they can offer energy at reduced rates to home and office based businesses.
Marketing Your Business In The Midst Of Covid-19:
5 Tips To Stay Afloat

If you are like many business owners out there, the coronavirus pandemic has rocked your world. According to a SHRM study, 62% of small businesses say they have experienced a decrease in revenue since the start of Covid-19. To deal with this change in cash flow, you may find yourself having to change up other processes for the time being, such as your marketing strategies. 

Marketing During Covid-19: 5 Tips

The Covid-19 pandemic has changed the lives of consumers and businesses alike. And, with this major change and a “new normal” comes a new way to market to customers. 

To pivot your marketing amidst the coronavirus and help keep your business thriving during trying times, use these five Covid-19 marketing tips.

1. Reassure Your Customers
Your customers are your business’s #1 fans. Without them, you wouldn’t be the successful business you are today. In a time with so much uncertainty, you need to reassure your customers that you’re there for them and that your business isn’t going anywhere.

So, how do you tie in reassuring your customers into your marketing tactics? So happy you asked! To inform your customers about how you’re responding to the coronavirus and let them know you’re there for them when they need you, you can:

Send out email updates
Post regularly on social media
Add information in customer accounts (e.g., on the dashboard)

When reassuring your customers, keep a calm tone with a positive message and relevant language. And, remember to include how they can contact you if they have any questions.

2. Get Creative 
This coronavirus age is not the time to fall back on your old marketing strategies. It’s a time to take risks and be creative with your marketing tactics. 
When it comes to marketing your business during coronavirus, the more creative you are, the better. Having a unique way to market your products or services makes you stand out from your competition. Not to mention, spicing up your marketing can help draw in new customers and keep business booming during the coronavirus. 

So, you may be asking yourself, How can I take my marketing up a level while dealing with the coronavirus? For starters, you can promote unique offerings, like DIY kits and care packages, to get customers flying through your doors. You can also offer virtual options to customers, like online classes, meetings, and showcases. 

Whatever creative route you decide to take, have fun with it. Have a brainstorming session to think about what you can do to attract customers and make them want to spend their hard-earned cash during these trying times. 

3. Kick Things Up On Social
Even before the coronavirus started, social media was king. As of 2019, a whopping 79% of Americans have social media profiles. And, that number continues to grow as more people go virtual during the pandemic.  

To market your company in the middle of coronavirus, take your strategies to social. The truth is, this coronavirus age is prime time to promote your business offerings online. To market your business on social, be active, and present. You can:

Start or join conversations
Utilize sponsored posts or paid advertisements
Post more frequently
Have an online contest (e.g., share for a chance to win X)
Keep your customers in the loop with store updates
Promote special or limited-time offerings 

Social media is a great way for you to create buzz about your business. Not to mention, it’s a relatively inexpensive option to promote your business and spread the word about your offerings online. So, what are you waiting for?

4. Build Relationships Virtually
Building relationships is one of those things that can be easier said than done, especially when you’re trying to build them online versus in-person. But if you want to market your business in the midst of coronavirus, you have to embrace building and strengthening relationships with your customers online.

To strengthen relationships with your customers, put yourself in their shoes. What would you want to see and hear from a business? How would you feel if you saw one of your business’s marketing communications?

Keep open, honest, and considerate communication going. If you currently don’t have a regular cadence of communication with your customers, now’s the time to start (think email marketing campaigns). 

When communicating and connecting with customers during the coronavirus, be empathic, genuine, and thoughtful. The more you connect with your customers and get a feel for who they are, the better you can market to them in the future. 

5. Improve Your Online Presence
With the coronavirus in full swing and more and more people hopping on the online bandwagon, there’s no better time to work on your business’s online presence. Having a strong online presence can help you build your brand and gain credibility to attract new customers. Plus, it makes your business more readily accessible to customers so they can find out more information about what your business has to offer. 

According to one source, internet hits have surged between 50% and 70% due to the coronavirus. With so many people spending their free time online, why not take advantage of it? To give your business’s online presence a nice boost, you can:

Optimize your business website for mobile
Create valuable content
Do some SEO research
Incorporate keywords on your website pages
Engage in online communities and forums
Improve user experience

Again, there’s no better time than now to boost your online presence. And remember, even if you already have a top-notch online presence, there’s always room for improvement. So, get out there and give your business the online boost it deserves! 

Why Is It Important To Market During Covid-19?

Pandemic or not, marketing to your customers is always an important aspect of running your business. But, how can continuing and improving your marketing efforts during Covid-19 benefit your business. Well, it can help you:

Get ahead of your competitors
Learn more about your target audience
Build on your business relationships
Set yourself up for success post-coronavirus

Now is not the time to put the brakes on your marketing efforts. It is your opportunity to be more strategic than ever, put yourself in your customers’ shoes, and better market to your customers.

Mike Kappel is the founder and CEO of Patriot Software, LLC.

Our partners renew their support on their anniversary months. The below list are those who renewed since the last edition of the Chamber Chatter. Thank you for your continued trust and support!
20 or more years
BB & T now Truist

10 - 19 years
Chesapeake Hearing Center
Minuteman Press of Ocean City
Worcester County Veterans Memorial
Worcester County Commission on Aging, Inc
Healing Hands Chiropractic, P.C.

5 - 9 years
Sea Grace at North Beach
Ocean Pines Stump and Tree Removal
Tri-County Workforce Development Initiative
2-4 years
Debbie Bennington - Berkshire Hathaway

1 year
Royal Plus Electric
Oceans East
Acquest Title Services
We are excited to announce a New Full HVAC Mechanical Licensed Contractor to the Eastern Shore.

We bring 40 years of experience to the area Including Residential, Commercial, Refrigeration and custom duct work and design. We will always keep to the highest standards of quality and workmanship. I believe in old school workmanship with excellent customer service. Our company prides ourselves on customer satisfaction and being there when you need us.

We are a family owned business and our goals are to treat our customers like family. Become part of the Rescue Team Family. My grandfather gave me his plumbing tools when I was 17 years old and I never looked back, following in his footsteps. I Decided to move to the Eastern Shore this year and start my own business to give customers three things they need honesty, fair prices, and someone to show up when you most need it.

Visit our website Rescuehvac911.com. We look forward to serving the Eastern Shore.  

Please take advantage of the services we have to offer. It’s that time of year for fall check-ups on your heating system to keep them running efficiently. We are the paramedics of HVAC.

Rescue Heating & Air Conditioning LLC
Located: Berlin, Maryland
Phone Number: 443-925-4099