We are pleased to announce that as part of the 2021 Regional Pilot grant program, the Massachusetts Office of Business Development (MOBD) has awarded a grant to the Neponset River Regional Chamber, in the amount of $95,000 for programs geared toward helping small businesses recover from COVID.
Working with the towns of Canton, Dedham, Norwood and Westwood, the Chamber, will run a “Regional Restaurant Week” from June 7 through June 11.
The purpose of the initiative is to encourage people to begin frequenting local restaurants again, as we head back into better weather and more and more people have been vaccinated.
A dedicated “Regional Restaurant Week” webpage will be built and housed on the NRRC’s website. It will list all participating restaurants, their special offers and links to their websites. Posters and flyers promoting “Restaurant Week” will be created and distributed to participating restaurants so that they can publicize the event to their existing customers.
A social media campaign will be executed using Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Diners will be encouraged to post selfies on their social media platforms as they dine out. Local officials will be recruited to do the same. Stay tuned for more details to come.
We will also organize an educational campaign to help local merchants increase their ability to handle online sales and manage their online reputation using Google My Business and other training and tools.
During the COVID-19 related shutdown, many businesses adapted to increase their online presence in order to continue serving customers. Many of the local merchants in our downtown areas lack the capacity or skill set to avail themselves of these necessary changes and continue to struggle. This effort aims to take a targeted approach of reaching out to those who need assistance in bringing their business online or enhancing what they already have. It will also give them the tools to more effectively manage their online reputation.
This will be done through online webinars to the broader community of merchants and then through one-on-one mentoring with contracted consultants, trainers and web designers. Webinar topics will include Google My Business; Using Facebook, Instagram and Twitter; managing online payment portals; Online reservations; and more.
We are excited to have been given this opportunity to promote and assist local businesses and look forward to working with our municipal partners and with The Dedham Square Circle, The Friends of Norwood Center, contracted consultants, web designers, graphic designers and printers, to carry out these initiatives successfully.
President and CEO