Tuesday 3/17/2020
 
Dear Business Partners,
 
Things continue to change rapidly concerning COVID-19 (Coronavirus). In an effort to keep you up to date I will be sending daily emails. Below the daily email is the previous days' information dated, so you don't miss a thing and can keep a running tab on what has been sent out.
 
A few things to keep in mind, Venice MainStreet is looking for you to send us your businesses changes, announcements, new hours of operation, all information you would like to be made as public as possible. We will be utilizing our email list, website, social media, print media to spread the word.
 
Prior to this crisis, Venice MainStreet had the most comprehensive community newsletter and calendar available. This has not changed, we will continue this! The messaging will be changed to promote your business during social distancing required because of COVID-19.
 
If you are looking for ideas of what to do to help your business and marketing strategies, some great information was sent out yesterday and is located below. But also, I encourage you to look online and at social media to similar industries and businesses across the nation and world for creativity already in place. There is no need to reinvent the wheel right now. A favorite quote of mine is to: "rip it off, and do it!"
 
The MainStreet staff is available by phone and email to answer questions and help you. Please reach out to us and we can offer suggestions.
 
Beyond that I have compiled a few more resources below for you to look over.
 
Best,
Kara Morgan
CEO
Venice MainStreet

INFORMATION FOR BUSINESSES TUESDAY 3/17
ALL ITEMS LISTED ARE PROVIDED TO THE BEST KNOWLEDGE Of Venice MainStreet AT THE TIME of Notification FOR THE BENEFIT OF BUSINESSES.

Coronavirus Guidance Issued by the White House last night:
Click PDF

The President also made the following announcements yesterday:

Fed Chairman approves request to use 13(3) - $10 Billion from Fed to guarantee purchase of $1 Trillion in commercial paper

$300 Billion in income tax is deferred. If you can file on April 15, particularly if you are due refund, then use the current deadline. If you owe money to the IRS you can defer up to $1,000,000.00 for 90 days. 

Business interruption payments to workers pending before Congress. Looking to send checks to Americans immediately. Looking for delivery in next two weeks. 

Business resiliency payments pending before Congress.

Restaurants offering pickup and delivery should remain open.

Florida Governor DeSantis Suspends Bars and Nightclubs for 30 days(as of 11am):

Florida Governor DeSantis Opens Bridge Loans to Small Businesses:
Loans from the State of Florida for small business with 2 – 100 employees. Loans up to $50,000.00. No interest. Funds are available immediately.  The link is  https://floridadisasterloan.org/

Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO): Business Damage Assessment Survey: 
Find the Business Damage Assessment Survey that is managed by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) to evaluate businesses affected by COVID-19 and the overall impact to our local economy.
 
If possible please take a moment to complete this survey, as it will impact the relief programs that are initiated.

SNAP RETAIL offers unlimited free trial to small businesses during the COVID-19 Crisis:
Email marketing and social media platform for your small business-why not?-its free!
Sign up for your free trial here.


INFORMATION FOR BUSINESSES Monday 3/16
ALL ITEMS LISTED ARE PROVIDED TO THE BEST KNOWLEDGE Of Venice MainStreet AT THE TIME of Notification FOR THE BENEFIT OF BUSINESSES.

How to Help Minimize Business Disruption During Emergencies:
In challenging circumstances, it may be more difficult than usual for your business to support its employees and communicate with customers. Below are some recommendations and resources that can help you minimize disruptions.

Stay connected with your customers and employees
Send emails, update your website, use social media, if possible call clients and customers. In a way your are creating digital storefronts for your business, and will allow you to stay connected with your customers and employees virtually—from nearly anywhere, anytime.

Stay connected with your customers and employees
Whether your business sells goods or provides services, reliable communication channels can help ensure your customers and employees are getting the support they need.

Connect with your customers using Live platforms
Live videos can be a great way to proactively educate your customers during this situation. You can post Live videos and stories on Facebook and Instagram, host virtual events to show your customers how you’re actively keeping your premises and products safe, and answer customer inquiries about how your business will continue to support its customers.

Learn more about going Live on Facebook and Instagram click here.

Build out your messaging experience
Be responsive and provide your customers transparency during this time. Ensuring responses are timely. In addition to answering customer inquiries, you can also take orders, provide virtual services and host video chats. You can also automate and templatize your responses, and prepare FAQs with away messages and quick replies.

Stay connected with your employees
It’s also important to stay connected with your employees during this period. You can use Workplace from Facebook as a hub to post important announcements, coordinate responses and provide your employees with any support they may need. Zoom GoToMeeting is also an excellent resource for virtual meetings.


Use additional channels to showcase your products and services
If your products or services can be bought or used online, consider strengthening your online presence. If you sell goods, you can create an online product catalog to showcase your items, fulfill orders and receive payouts. If your business provides services, you can book appointments and make video calls.

Continue to build your brand
At this time, it can be challenging to conduct business as usual, but it’s important not to neglect your brand. Do what you can to provide consistent messaging and transparent communication during this time and once the situation has passed.


Strengthen your online presence
Make sure you post photos and videos about your business, products or services consistently. Consider creating an announcement about how your business has been affected and pin it to the top of your Page.

Consider creating a content calendar to plan out posts for the next few weeks. Organize your messaging and visuals. Make sure your posts continue to have a consistent look and feel, and highlight what makes your business unique and special. Interact with new and existing customers in a personal way. Share authentic content, make announcements, encourage people to visit your website and show behind the scenes moments to continue to engage your community.

We hope that this information is positive and helpful in your businesses' response to the necessary social distancing due to COVID-19.

Sincerely,
Kara Morgan

CEO
Venice MainStreet


INFORMATION FOR BUSINESSES Friday 3/13 PM
FLORIDA BUSINESSES AND EMPLOYERS SHOULD REFER TO THE  CDC  FOR UP-TO-DATE GUIDANCE ON BUSINESS OPERATIONS.

ALL ITEMS LISTED ARE PROVIDED TO THE BEST KNOWLEDGE Of Venice MainStreet AT THE TIME of Notification FOR THE BENEFIT OF BUSINESSES.

Recommended Strategies
  • Actively encourage sick employees to stay home
  • Emphasize staying home when sick, respiratory etiquette, and hand hygiene for all employees
  • Perform routine environmental cleaning.
  • Advise employees before traveling to take preventative steps recommended by CDC.

Resources for Businesses and Employers

Business Damage Assessment Survey for COVID-19
On March 12, Governor Ron DeSantis announced the activation of the  Business Damage Assessment survey  to assess the impact of COVID-19 on Florida’s local business operations. The survey, managed by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO), will evaluate businesses affected by COVID-19 and the impacts the virus has had on the local economy so actions to implement appropriate relief programs can begin.

The National Small Business Association also has set up an online portal for small businesses to share how their business are being impacted in order to provide real-time insight to reporters and policymakers on what small business needs. They have been connecting small-business owners with reporters to get the word out about how the virus is impacting them which has resulted in some important coverage.

Potential HR Issues Arising from the Coronavirus
The American Society of Employers (ASE) has put together a very comprehensive FAQ regarding coronavirus and how employers can respond to and work with your employees.

Small-business owners should also be aware that there may be some OSHA-related implications when it comes to the virus. Companies in certain industries where workers are at risk of encountering infection may be subject to requirements to protect workers from exposure by using appropriate personal protective equipment such as gloves, eye, face, and respiratory protection. If a worker becomes sick after exposure on the job, it could be a recordable illness. To read more click here.

In addition to these resources, it is worth noting that the U.S. Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship sent a formal letter and request to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) to detail its plan to support small business in the case of a broad outbreak. Committee Chair Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Ranking Member Ben Cardin (D-Md.) have also requested a formal briefing from SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza.

The letter can be found here .


We hope this information is helpful and we will continue to update you as more becomes available.

Sincerely,

Kara Morgan
(941)-484-6722
kara.morgan@venicemainstreet.com
Since 1988 Venice MainStreet, Inc has operated as a volunteer driven, 501(c)3 non-profit dedicated to enhancing the quality of life in our community by preserving, protecting, and promoting Historic, Downtown Venice. 

Venice MainStreet Inc. is a 501c3 nonprofit registered with the Florida Division of Consumer Services. A COPY OF THE OFFICIAL REGISTRATION AND FINANCIAL INFORMATION MAY BE OBTAINED FROM THE DIVISION OF CONSUMER SERVICES BY CALLING TOLL-FREE WITHIN THE STATE. REGISTRATION DOES NOT IMPLY ENDORSEMENT, APPROVAL, OR RECOMMENDATION BY THE STATE. 1-800-HELP-FLA (435-7352) www.floridaconsumerhelp.com [s. 496.412(1)(c), F.S.]