Business as usual
The Chamber Blog
In May 2019, Travis and Jami Harrington of Reclaimed by Grace accepted the Small Business of the Year award at the Chamber's Annual Meeting and Award Dinner. This year, they will pass the torch, presenting the 2020 Small Business of the Year award. This year's awards program will look much different - be closed, video recorded, and released in a special virtual watch party on September 15th. Although it's nothing we originally envisioned, and certainly not the celebration of local business we hoped to put on, I think we have much to celebrate this year all the same. The Harringtons and "RBG" are certainly one glowing example of all that small and local business owners have to be proud of in 2020, and the spirit of entrepreneurship we are so excited to see in Crawfordsville and Montgomery County. They have experienced so much as business owners between accepting and presenting the award.
Travis and Jami's business venture started to take root in 2017 in a downtown storefront. They joined the Chamber, taking advantage of our Entrepreneur Membership in 2018 and it's been our great pleasure to watch them develop their business into what it is today. Travis and Jami spoke at our first-ever Retail Summit and shared some of their journey to-date in Fall 2019. And in February 2020, we celebrated a Grand Reopening at their new location on Grant and Market Streets. In the new space, Travis and Jami have increased workspace, ability to meet with clients to consult on their projects, and a brand new maker's space for hosting group classes. They've kept quite busy despite the challenges 2020 has thrust upon our business community. If you know Jami, you know there is still a smile behind that mask, too!
Am I extremely disappointed that we will not get to honor our Business of the Year award recipients in-person in 2020? Most definitely. And mostly because I believe we have more to celebrate than ever before. Being a business owner or leader, and especially an entrepreneur, is difficult any year requiring adaptability, courage, perseverance, and good business sense to weigh necessary risk with potential reward. This year, owners and leaders had to relearn all the rules and still find success in their given industries and markets. And the rules change daily.
We know being an entrepreneur is hard - any time, but we need you! Creators, innovators, and rule-benders. You're an integral part of our intricate business community, and the Chamber is here to help you connect, promote, and navigate. We're proud to have hard-working, creative members like Travis and Jami among our membership. Reclaimed by Grace is one of the very first Entrepreneur Members to "graduate" to a Small Business membership. Congrats to you, RBG, on all your successes and lessons learned (and shared)! Thank you for sharing your entrepreneurial spirit with your customers and community every day. (Seriously, every day. Follow RBG on Facebook and take note on how to stay connected with your customers.)
I invite you, the public, to join us for our 2020 Business of the Year Awards virtual watch party on the evening of September 15th, where we will honor many local businesses and individuals for their work in the past year. You can follow us on Facebook for details to be announced soon. Anyone interested in learning more about our free first-year Entrepreneurial Membership is welcome to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Crawfordsville | Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce
Summer Intern (Wabash College)
Crawfordsville | Montgomery County Chamber Of Commerce
This summer I have been interning at the Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce. Most of my work has been on promoting the Chamber and its members through video interviews. Each week I have been able to meet with business owners from all different areas of our community. From Brad Monts of Hoosier Heartland State Bank, to Diana McCormick of Athens Arts, our member database covers all aspects of business here in Montgomery County. Most of the interviews revolved around me asking questions such as: “Why is the Chamber important to your business?” or “What reasons would you give a business (large or small) to join the Chamber?” Through these interviews I have made numerous connections outside of the office and met many great members who have the community’s best interest in mind. The final product will be a “promotional” video highlighting the locally owned businesses here in Montgomery County. When I began the internship in June, the Crawfordsville Chamber of Commerce website had no video footage and many of the pictures were stills taken from a few years ago. My boss Cassie and I have been working to try and figure out how we can bring “new life” to the site to draw more people’s attention, not only to our web page, but to Montgomery County as a whole. We want to show off our great community to people who may not know anything about us or give more information to those who wish to learn more about the community. While most of my work has been on this one video, we have been talking about other uses of video on the site to brighten up our page with the use of visual work. I have also made a few user guides for members of our chamber such as: “Wireless Screen Sharing Guide” for the Fusion 54 building, as well as a “Google Analytics Startup Guide” for members who requested a Google Analytics walk through. Both guides are free for any of our members to use and we hope it helps them as they continue to grow and develop their businesses. The work I have been doing has allowed me to further my knowledge of video filming and editing, which I intend on being my career path later down the road. At the end of the summer, the video will be completed, and we hope that it will showcase everything we at the Chamber, as well as the community as a whole, have to offer to anyone who wants to learn about/visit Montgomery County.
Please check out Tyler's video! Thank you for your good work, and special thanks to Hoosier Heartland State Bank, Walmart Optical Lab, Athens Arts Gallery, and Davis Morrison Realty for participating! - Cassie Hagan, Executive Director
This summer I had the amazing opportunity to work as a summer intern at the Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce. One of the goals I had for the summer was to do some research on how to utilize Google Analytics for our website/business. This sent me down the rabbit hole that is Google Analytics. There is so much to learn and utilize. At first glance, Google Analytics seems like too much to comprehend. To the untrained eye all these new terms can be very intimidating. From managing different properties to assigning tags to track ad campaigns, what does it all mean and how does it apply to me and my business? But I was given a task to learn the software and to share what I have learned with others. So, I put my best foot forward and began my journey learning about Google Analytics in hopes of becoming proficient in the software and maybe teaching someone else in the process. In this blog I want to explain what Google Analytics is and why it is possibly the most important tool for your business. By the end of this article I want you to feel motivated to go out and set up your own account and begin learning things about your business that you didn’t even know were possible.
So what is Google Analytics anyway?
Google Analytics is a digital marketing tool designed to help you track usage on your website and to transfer that newly acquired knowledge to some of your marketing techniques. In Google Analytics you can check real time data as well as data from previous time periods to compare and contrast different statistics. Being able to monitor all of the different pathways people can access your website simultaneously allows you to find out what is working well and what could use more attention. This also allows you to compare different marketing techniques and how well they are working to attract more traffic to your website. Google Analytics also collects data on metrics such as bounce rates and time on page. This can show you what parts of the website could benefit from some reworking to improve traction. Basically, Google Analytics is a software that gives you access to statistics about your website clientele to make informed decisions about marketing techniques.
Why is Google Analytics important?
Have you ever been looking at your website and asked yourself: “who are these people accessing my website? What things are they looking at when they access my website? How can I boost my marketing campaign traction?” These are all questions that Google Analytics can help you answer. Think about what you could do if you knew how people were gaining access to your website. Are they finding your company from ads on Facebook? Are they simply finding you through a Google search? If so, how can I generate more traffic to my website using these different reference sources? For example, in my Google Analytics I found that a majority of the people who access my website are doing so through organic searches (AKA a Google search), but what I want to see is more traffic coming from my social media accounts. Google Analytics would show me that not many people are being referred from social media and that I should put some more effort into updating my social media to make people more prone to visit my website. Basically, Google Analytics gives me the information I need to improve traction on my website. This is important because it helps you pinpoint where you are lacking and or thriving in terms of marketing
How can I get this started for my business?
If you are ready to get started with Google Analytics check out the step-by-step guide my fellow intern Tyler Rector and I created to help assist our members in their journey with Google Analytics. They are all located on the Business Resources page on our MOCO Chamber website. The “Google Analytics Start-up Guide” will help you get the initial set-up of the software up and going as well as offering some key word definitions. There is also a corresponding “Google Analytics: The Set-up” document that offers more visual aid for people setting up their Google Analytics account. After getting your account set-up and a tracking code installed check out the “Google Analytics: The Basics” PowerPoint. It will help you with navigating the Google Analytics site. Feel free to use these documents to assist you in your research with Google Analytics.
All in all, Google Analytics is a fantastic tool for both small and large businesses alike. Each and every business can utilize this free online program and benefit from the things it offers. No matter if you have the best marketing scheme or none at all Google Analytics is going to help you figure what is working well and what needs to be swept under the table. Check out our Business Resources page to get started now.
CRAWFORDSVILLE | MONTGOMERY COUNTY CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
101 W. Main St., Ste. 412, Crawfordsville, IN 47933
P: (765) 362-6800
M-F: 8:30am - 4:30pm
P: (765) 362-6800
M-F: 8:30am - 4:30pm