Ahead of Pace, New Borrowers and Volunteer Leadership
Welcome to Community Capital's e-newsletter, and hopefully it is starting to feel more like spring for you, as it is for us here in Central Vermont. I want to start off by sharing a bit about what we've been up to in the first quarter of 2019. We are well ahead of the pace we set for ourselves for new loan creation, having closed over $250K in new micro-loans thru mid-March. Our borrowers this quarter include roofers, commercial cleaners, and maple syrup and hydroponic food producers, just to name a few. We have been excited to see a few former borrowers come back to us for capital to expand, and as always, we welcome new folks to our family of entrepreneurs.
Next, I am excited to share that we've added three new Loan Committee members, and one new member to our Board of Directors. To our Loan Committees we welcome Eun-Young Denny from VEDA, Lane Fury from Cooperative Fund of New England, and Robin Ware from Community Bank, NA. And to our Board we welcome Mary Chevalier, who brings her small business ownership and financial expertise to our already-strong Board of Directors. We are incredibly grateful to these individuals for sharing their time and talent for the benefit of our borrowers throughout Vermont!
I typically end my notes in our newsletter with an invitation to reach out if you want to learn more about how Community Capital of Vermont is working in your community, or if you just want to hear more about our work and what we're up to. We would welcome it. In the meantime, thank you for reading, and enjoy spring!
Strokes of Genius: Cocktails, Caves and Reach, Reach Reach
Earning visibility online takes some creativity, and two Community Capital businesses have knocked it out of the park this spring. Although Lisa & John at The Miller’s Toll Dinner Club & Lounge, and Sarita at Vermont Salt Cave did not pay for their online campaigns, their investments in time, ingenuity, and knowing their brand and audience is paying big dividends in terms of social media reach and organic SEO for their businesses. Read more on the Community Capital blog about what they did to get great results in their recent campaigns.
Seven Essential Elements of a Marketing Plan (and How to Pay Attention to Them)
You’re in business and often you’re working solo. You always have a ton to do. From serving customers to fixing the cash register to learning the ins and outs of taxes and insurance, it can seem like there’s always another day to work on things that don’t seem to be as pressing.
Marketing can be one of those things. Seasoned entrepreneurs will encourage you to spend some time working “on” your business rather than “in” your business, taking time to look at the big picture and plan for the future instead of getting lost in the weeds and micromanaging, as in this article from Inc.
When it comes to marketing, it’s helpful to break it up into seven, thoughtful chunks. Whether or not you already have a marketing plan, set aside 15 quiet minutes a day for marketing. Make an outline of what you’re doing, and what you might want to do, within these areas. Read more on the Community Capital blog.
Reynolds House Opens in Barre
Congratulations to Community Capital borrower The Reynolds House Inn, a circa-1892 bed and breakfast, meeting, and events space re-opening this month in Barre. The graceful inn, included on the National Register of Historic Places, has been completely restored and reconceived. The Reynolds House Facebook page offers many beautiful images of Barre's once-again crown jewel.
We so appreciate it...
As a non-profit, Community Capital of Vermont relies on donations - and we also are grateful for the recognition of great businesses and their customers!
Many thanks to Washington Electric Coop members and their Community Fund, who contributed a portion of their capital credit refunds to Community Capital.
Here's to Hannaford's in South Barre, who contributed the proceeds of their "Community Bag" reusable shopping tote sales to Community Capital.
Follow us on Facebook for Community Capital news, and borrower and lending updates. Keep up with business, community, and partner events on our Facebook events calendar. Have an event you’d like us to share? Tag us on Facebook at @CommunityCapitalofVermont.