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  • Working Hard on Your Behalf

  • The Santa Maria Valley Chamber of Commerce is here for business. We continue to work hard to serve our members, local businesses and the Santa Maria Valley community. Here’s a glimpse at what we’ve been up to lately.
    (Updated 6-3-20) 
     
  • Catalyst for Business Growth

     

    • Launching a bi-lingual “Support Santa Maria Valley” campaign to reconnect the community with local businesses and encourage economic recovery through increased business activity.
       
    • Our Visitors’ Bureau launched a “safe return to travel” campaign to support recovery of our local tourism and hospitality industries.   The campaign includes paid and organic digital ads, a blog and newsletter, public relations outreach to travel industry influencers, and web-based promotions.
    • Worked with the City on modifications/reopening allowances for businesses trying to reopen – or forced to modify their operations by moving outdoors, including the use of temporary signage, using parking lot spaces for additional outdoor dining, etc.

    • The Visitors Bureau shifted its popular Fave 5 e-blast to focus on virtual and “socially-distanced safe” activities to help locals and potential visitors stay connected with the Santa Maria Valley experience.

    • Our Economic Development Commission continues to work with businesses looking to open, expand and grow. This past month, they worked with 1 business on expansion, 2 new businesses, 2 compliance issues, and several conversations regarding downtown projects.

    • Continued to update our “Business Reopening/Recovery Toolkit” page to help businesses navigate the reopening and recovery process.   Information and resources are added regularly as new guidance or materials become available.   Resources are available in both English and Spanish.

    • Worked with the County and other leaders to complete and publicize the RISE Guide and to help businesses understand the requirements and complete the self-certification process to safely reopen.

    • Launched the “Safe and Open” pledge for businesses to promote their Safe & Open status through the Chamber and with free marketing resources. Made the pledge available in Spanish as well.

    • Chamber remains an active participant in the REACH regional economic partnership.  In particular, the Chamber is engaged with initiatives focused on expanding commercial space launch activity at Vandenberg AFB and promoting VAFB as a candidate site for the headquarters location for the new U.S. Space Force

    Read more about how we've been a catalyst for business growth HERE.

  • Convener of Leaders & Influencers

    • The Chamber continues to convene and facilitate a regular “key community leaders” call to ensure various sectors are coordinating and sharing information/resources related to the pandemic and community needs.

    • SM Connect! Young Professionals held a Virtual Leadership Roundtable: Met with local CEO’s and community leaders to discuss with young professionals about leading during this time, leadership traits and strategies, as well as networking.

    • The Visitors Bureau held a SMV Tourism Virtual Meeting with Tourism Partners: Met with local tourism partners to check in on how they are doing as well as their strategies moving forward during this time.

    • The Visitors Bureau held their first Hospitality Happy Hour for hotel hospitality workers.

    • The Chamber continues to host monthly Virtual Mixers to allow businesses to reconnect and network.

    • The Chamber continues hosting Virtual BYB (Build Your Business) Breakfast meetings every Friday Morning as another business connection opportunity.

    • Leadership Santa Maria Valley recently graduated 20 new leaders as part of its 2020 Class.The class of 2021 has been rescheduled to begin in January 2021. Recruitment will begin this fall.

    Read more about how we've been a convener of leaders and influencers HERE.

  • Champion for a Stronger Santa Maria Valley

    • The Economic Development Commission continues to facilitate local business participation in the City’s ongoing General Plan update.

    • The Chamber continues to actively monitor legislation in Sacramento and to provide feedback to local elected officials about the potential impacts of the various proposals.

    • The Chamber's Ambassador Committee donated 37 veggie boxes from Talley Farms Fresh Harvest and Blosser Urban Garden to front line night shift security and housekeeping staff at Marian Regional Medical Center.

    • The Chamber worked with Allan Hancock College and other community leaders to launch the “Protect & Respect” PR campaign to encourage community members to wear a mask. This campaign continues to grow as political, community, and business leaders across the county lend their voices and images to the spread the word.

    • Launched a monthly survey to gauge the status of local businesses, understand the impact of the pandemic on business, and inform our efforts to address local business needs.

    • Collaborated with neighboring Chambers to publish a resource directory of PPE sources for businesses

    • Transitioned our “takeout and delivery dining options” online guide to include information on restaurants who are now opening for “dine-out” service

    • Chamber continues to provide regular updates on the state of business and local economic recovery efforts at City Council meetings and in other public forums to ensure businesses and community leaders are aware of the support and resources available.

    • The Chamber continues to assist businesses with economic recovery, and this past month referred 15 businesses to SBA resources and 7 to SCORE resources.

    • Our Economic Development Commission spoke with 63 businesses regarding COVID and other business related items

    Read more about how we've been a champion for a stronger Santa Maria Valley HERE.

  • What Our Members Have Shared

    "I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Santa Maria Valley Chamber of Commerce for all the work they have done to keep the busieness community informed during the recent COVID-19 outbreak. As a sponsor member of the Chamber, we have used the services offered to businesses many times. We find that the SMVCC website has numerous resources available to fit the needs of our business. Being a Chamber member also helps us to make connections and gain exposure in the communities we service. This has enabled us to grow our business through networking with other businesses. We would highly recommend any business to become a member."

    - Omar and Petra Hernanadez,
    Owners, Shred 2 You, Inc.

     

    “The SMV Chamber has helped amplify our agency’s marketing efforts and given us opportunities to promote our business in areas that we otherwise wouldn’t be able. We are in constant contact with our Chamber representatives ensuring we are maximizing our membership so we don’t miss out on a golden opportunity. They are always there to help guide, promote, and see to it that we continue to remain top of mind.”

    - Morris & Garritano Insurance Services

     

    "I can honestly say that the Chamber and Visitors' Bureau has significantly helped me with my sales personally. With them always sending us updates on events and what is going on within the city and even the Central Coast, I have been able to turn that information into selling points to get tourist groups to not only visit my hotel but also go to some of these events supporting Santa Maria Valley. Without their assistance and constant updates, especially during COVID-19, we would probably not be doing as well as we are now. Thank You Santa Maria Valley Chamber & Visitors' Bureau! Best Western PLUS big America appreciates you!"

    - Robert Cooks, Sales Manager
    Best Western PLUS Big America