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PPP Forgiveness Application Videos

One program, two forgiveness application forms. Which form is right for your business? Where do you find the forms? How do you fill out the applications properly? 

Maine SBDC has created walk-through videos to help small businesses understand the Paycheck Protection Program Forgiveness Applications. This is a three-part series that first helps business owners identify which application form they should be filling out. The additional two videos walk businesses through each of the applications: 3508EZ Short Form and 3808 Long Form.

Access the video here.

If you need further assistance, please visit www.mainesbdc.org or email mainesbdc@maine.edu.

 

 

 

 

Serving Customers – Mask or No Mask

By: Keenan Hendricks, Maine SBDC Intern

Customer service looks different these days. As a business owner, you are in control of how your customers see you through this shift. While it is vital to try your best to enforce and follow CDC safety guidelines, there are opportunities to serve and develop relationships with your customers amidst the pandemic.  Maine SBDC - Mask Signage

Here are some tips from a recent webinar hosted by Business Advisor Susan Desgrosseilliers:Read More

COVID Stories: Farmington Underground Escape Room | Events & Entertainment

COVID has caused massive disruptions in the way we all do business. Businesses throughout Maine are finding unique and interesting ways to connect with their customers, find new revenue streams, and keep their businesses afloat. Want to share how your business is pivoting? Contact us here.


Farmington Underground - LogoJoseph Musumeci and Mary Ellms own Farmington Underground Escape Room Center, which offers residents and visitors to the area a chance to fully immerse themselves in one of two (soon to be three!) themed rooms.  Guests have one hour to use puzzles, clues, hints, teamwork, and intuition to figure everything out and achieve victory.  The business brings much-needed recreation to Western Maine and has established a loyal following.  

Farmington Underground Treasure Hunt

In early March, the pair recognized the evolving situation of COVID-19 and temporarily closed their doors. They worked with Maine SBDC Advisor, Alison Lane, to analyze their financial situation and develop viable solutions to maintain a pulse while closed.  With a bit of financial relief and understanding the importance of staying connected to customers, they set to thinking about how to pivot operations.  

Treasure Hunt

Today, Farmington Underground offers Choose-Your-Own-Adventure outdoor walking excursions around the Downtown Farmington area.  Small teams traverse the streets and parks in search of clues and puzzles to solve a mission just as they would inside an escape room.  Every team has a different experience depending on their choices.  Locations were selected with social distancing in mind, bookings are limited, and nothing needs to be touched, so participants can be safely entertained.  Breathing fresh air and getting a bit of light exercise is the icing on the cake to this experience.

Joe and Mary are eager to reopen the escape rooms when safe and allowed.  They will continue to work with the Maine SBDC to establish safety protocols and ensure their next indoor visitors are comfortable and well-entertained!

More info: www.farmingtonunderground.com/

Maine SBDC Business Advisor:  Alison Lane 

COVID Stories: TuneTown Music Gear | Retail & Service

COVID has caused massive disruptions in the way we all do business. Businesses throughout Maine are finding unique and interesting ways to connect with their customers, find new revenue streams, and keep their businesses afloat. Want to share how your business is pivoting? Contact us here.


John and Pam Edwards - TuneTownJohn and Pam Edwards have owned TuneTown Music Gear for 16 years in Wells. They bring generations of musical industry experience with the vision of providing a positive and nurturing experience in music instruction, service, and sales. Their business features nine large state of the art lesson studios, a recording studio, and a live performance stage. In the showroom, they offer a selection of instruments, keyboards, amplification, PA and recording gear, audiovisual installations in schools, churches, and military bases, print music and accessories at competitive prices. TuneTown also provides repair and maintenance on instruments and electronics.Read More

COVID Stories: Wine Wise in Portland | Events & Experiences

COVID has caused massive disruptions in the way we all do business. Businesses throughout Maine are finding unique and interesting ways to connect with their customers, find new revenue streams, and keep their businesses afloat. Want to share how your business is pivoting? Contact us here.


Erica Archer - Wine Wise Owner Erica Archer owns Wine Wise. In normal times, Wine Wise provides wine, food, and spirit-based experiences. She and her team host group events that help connect customers to Maine’s vibrant food and beverage scene. Wine Wise hosts these wine and food events on sailboats and on walks through Portland’s bustling downtown. She also hosts trips to wine regions around the World.

Wine Wise - Sailboat Trips

How Wine Wise Pivoted:

Erica worked closely with her Maine SBDC business advisor to brainstorm ideas on how her business could maneuver the COVID-19 crisis. Using her extensive connections with local restaurant chefs/owners and wine distributors, Wine Wise began offering virtual wine brunches and dinners with incredible local chefs. These packages include carefully curated local food, wine pairings, delivered locally, and virtual event experience with the Chef and other community members. Erica has seen a tremendous response to her events, with most selling out. She is helping her customer relax and enjoy a nice night out, all from the safety of their own home.

Wine Wise - Virtual Events

Key to Success: Partnerships with other local businesses

More information: www.winewiseevents.com

Maine SBDC Business Advisor: Susan Desgrosseilliers

COVID Stories: My-FIT-24 in Gorham | Heath & Fitness

COVID has caused massive disruptions in the way we all do business. Businesses throughout Maine are finding unique and interesting ways to connect with their customers, find new revenue streams, and keep their businesses afloat. Want to share how your business is pivoting? Contact us here.


My-Fit-24 Logo Stacey and Jesse Coleman own My-FIT-24, a 24-hour fitness facility located in Gorham.  Started in 2007, My-FIT-24 provides access to fitness equipment, personal training, and group classes. The couple and their team are passionate about creating sustainable fitness solutions for their clients and community. Their programs are based on science to provide safe and effective workouts.Read More

COVID Stories: Acacia House Inn in Bar Harbor | Lodging & Hospitality

COVID has caused massive disruptions in the way we all do business. Businesses throughout Maine are finding unique and interesting ways to connect with their customers, find new revenue streams, and keep their businesses afloat. Want to share how your business is pivoting? Contact us here.


Acacia House InnAnna Durand and her husband own Acacia House Inn located in downtown Bar Harbor. Housed in a 10th-century building, this classic B&B features 9 rooms with soft linens, private baths, hardwood floors, and some with balconies. Full breakfast is served every morning with local ingredients.Read More

Tips to Prepare for Reopening

Tips for Preparing to ReopenBy: Business Advisor Susan Desgrosseilliers

Though your business may be closed, now is the time to start preparing for your next chapter.  We recommend you develop a well thought out plan for when you can open again. While not all businesses are brick and mortar, many of these tips can be applied to your business.

Focusing on the highlighted areas below will help make the transition easier for you, your employees and your customers. People across the country are rooting for the small business community, making this an opportunity for you to solidify existing customer relationships and to welcome new customers. 

Read More

How YOU Can Support Local Businesses Right Now

Maine Map - Support Small BusinessSmall businesses need you now more than ever. Maine would not be complete without the small businesses that make our communities unique, or without the hardworking business owners who create quality jobs for our families, friends and neighbors. We are all in this together. Pay It Forward and Maine Helps initiatives encourage Mainers to come together to support one another and our amazing small businesses. Read More