The city of Kenai has rolled out another way to boost businesses through the economic impacts of the coronavirus pandemic. It’s now taking applications for grants to help with online marketing and e-commerce.
“As they look to recover, marketing is going to be a key element to bringing folks into the door or growing their business, so we felt that this was something that folks probably were going to need and this was, we felt, an innovative way to get money out into the community for that specific purpose, said City Manager Paul Ostrander.
The marketing grants are $1,000 for businesses located in the city that have experienced a loss of sales or changes in their operations due to the pandemic.
The money can be spent to build or redesign websites, develop systems for online sales, expand social media marketing, improve search engine optimization or anything along those lines.
The money can’t be spent just anywhere, though. Businesses must work with Divining Point, LLC, which provides website and online marketing services in Alaska and Texas. Divining Point had a contract to update the city’s logo and marketing. Ostrander said the city issued a request for proposals for a company to do the marketing work for the grant program and Divining Point was the only proposal received.
Businesses can develop their own scope of work with Divining Point. Once the $1,000 grant is spent, they can choose to pay for additional work, or not. Applications are due Nov. 6 and the money must be spent by the end of the year.