Archive for the 'Downtown Longview' Category

01
Jun
11

AlleyFest celebrates 33 years of festival fun in downtown Longview June 3-5


AlleyFest – A Real East Texas Celebration of the Arts is taking place on the streets of Downtown Longview’s historic Main Street district.
 
Music Fest brings great entertainment to Longview on Friday and Saturday evening. Friday, Matthew Davidson Band will open the festival, taking the stage at 8:00 pm. The Matthew Davidson Band is not your typical rock band. Classic rock…classic blues…classic style.
 
Wade Bowen will headline Friday night starting at 10:00 pm on the Bud Light Main Stage. Bowen a leading light on the thriving Texas country foundation that also draws inspiration from the wide spectrum of music he loves. Ask Bowen what distinguishes his music, and after mulling the notion for a minute, his answer is basic and direct: “Intensity”.
 
Saturday AlleyFest proudly welcomes 3 Rock N’ Roll Tributes! (33 years with 3 Tributes)
· 6:00 pm – 7 Bridges: The Ultimate EAGLES Experience is a stunning accurate tribute to the music of the Eagles. 7 Bridges is a tour de force of talent combining incredible musicianship, vocal precision and a stage presence that has garnered them nationwide acclaim.
· 8:00 pm – Back in Black a Tribute to AC / DCis an incredible, exciting, high energy reproduction of a concert performance of AC / DC. They are one of the first bands chosen by Live Nation to tour the House of Blues!
· 10:00 pm and still rocking – Guns 4 Roses the internationally touring, total Guns N’ Roses rock and roll tribute experience; long hair, leather pants, sunglasses, bandanas, top hats, and Les Pauls! Guns 4 Roses rock all your favorite songs from Welcome to the Jungle to November Rain and everything in between putting on a full stage production. More than just a Guns N’ Roses tribute band, Guns 4 Roses is the Ultimate Guns N’ Roses Tribute Experience!
 
Alley Art, Alley Run, Kids Fest, Food Fest and more!
 
AlleyFest — The Place to BE! June 3 – 5, 2011 http://www.alleyfest.org/
17
Feb
11

CHAMBER LUANCHES A NEW ONLINE TOOL KIT TO HELP BUSINESSES SUCCEED!


Chamber tools for business

Tools for Business Success

The Longview Chamber of Commerce is proud to announce a new FREE resource, “TOOLS FOR BUSINESS SUCCESS” website, which was designed to help existing businesses and individuals thinking about forming their own business. What can you find in the Tools for Business section of The Longview Chamber’s website, http://www.longviewchamber.com?

  • Business Formation Information & Assistance- Learn about various business legal structures, get information on what type may be best for them, and then be led step by step through the formation process with links to all the state and federal forms and reporting requirements.
  • Sources for Support and Free Counseling • Local, Regional, State and Federal Business Loan and Funding Programs all in one place
  • Business Certifications to compete for new government contracts • Federal & State Contracts open for bid • How to Go Green • Disaster Planning and Recovery Assistance
  • International Trade and Going Global
  • A Cash Flow Calculator and other tools
  • Training programs for owners and employees
  • A New Hire Email and Employer’s Kit that can save hours of time
  • Marketing and Selling Resources 
  • Buying Locally

Our Tools for Business Success site will be continually updated with information to help businesses be successful. The site provides industry-specific resources for: Tourism/Hospitality, Retail, Wood Industry, Agriculture, Manufacturers, Art in Business, Veterans, Fishing Industry, and Arts and MORE.

Why did the Chamber decide to invest in such a site? We are continually asked the following questions and our new “Tools for Business Success” is one of the best solutions we’ve seen.

  1. Does the Chamber have Business Resource information? YES           The Longview Chamber of Commerce is committed to providing your business with the BEST resources available to be successful. Our new Tools for Business Success is the perfect resource for existing and prospective new businesses. To receive your toolkit go to www.longviewchamber.com and click on our succes$ bu$iness icon.
  2. Do you have information on How to Start a Business? YES            Current Business Formation and Employer’s Kits are provided FREE through our website. Our site will has all the forms and instructions on how to create a sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, or LLC.
  3. Does this service cost? NO            The Longview Chamber’s “Tools for Business Success” is FREE to all web browsers. Updates to the site are made on a regular basis as laws and information change that may impact your business. Is the information available in Spanish? YES This is a unique bonus that provides an unprecedented level of support to our Hispanic business owners and potential entrepreneurs in Longview. Visit www.longviewchamber.com today and click on the success$ bu$iness icon. It will be able to answer your questions about operating a business!
  4. Is the information available in Spanish?    YES            This is a unique bonus that provides an unprecedented level of support to our Hispanic business owners and potential entrepreneurs in Longview.

 Visit http://www.longviewchamber.comtoday and click on the success$ bu$iness icon. It will be able to answer your questions about operating a business!

05
Oct
10

Chairman’s Letter to Chamber Membership


 Dear Chamber Member,

 As your chairman I’m very proud to say that YOUR Chamber is moving in the RIGHT direction! The Longview Cham­ber of Commerce members and staff can take great pride in the strides made to fulfill its mission to be “the voice for business” in the Longview community.  

On September 30th the board hosted their annual board retreat where we look at where we’ve been and build on our successes to move our organization forward.  A few of the 2010 hallmarks include the launch of Chamber Choice-a small business health care plan with UnitedHealthcare, changing the name of the organization back to the Longview Chamber of Commerce, and bringing closure the Market Street Strategies report.

 As you may remember, in 2009 our organization partnered with LEDCO to hire Market Street Strategies to take a holistic review of our organizations. In light of the challenging economic times, our board felt it was necessary to review our organization to ensure we were staying abreast of best practices within the Chamber and Economic Development industry in order to move our community forward.  Outcomes from this study included:

  • provide stronger entrepreneurial based programming (to date we have hosted 14 business development programs with 607 participants),
  • clarify who we are … the board voted to change the name back to the Longview Chamber of Commerce after 78% of our members requested the name change during a recent survey, and
  • work more closely with LEDCO to bring jobs to Longview.   Recently, LEDCO staff and two (2) of their board members participated in the Chamber’s board retreat in order to build a stronger collaborative effort.

 Without question, 2010 has been an eventful year.  The future belongs to the courageous and your Chamber board and staff will continue to take great strides to­wards becoming an even better organization and resource for the community. Looking ahead, the Chamber will need to continue to work on advocating on behalf of our members while building relevant and impactful programs and services to help our members grow and prosper!   

 The future looks bright for Longview and I am proud to be part of an organization that strives to strengthen the local economy so that our city is a great place to live, work and play. It has truly is an honor to serve as your 2010 Chairman. I thank you for that opportunity! 

– Jim Kendrick

CEO Longview Regional Medical Center

23
Jul
10

8 Ways to Make Your Cash Register Ring


On Thursday, July 22nd The Longview Partnership offered a webinar through HALO Team.  Once again, this learning opportunity was fantastic for our area businesses.  Eight key points were discussed which generated several potential solutions to businesses and great discussion items.

1. Offer an experience that impacts all 5 senses

  • Sight – what is the impression do your customer leave with? Place of business, website, and/or email campaigns?
  • Hearing – What does your customer hear when they walk into your place of business?
  • Smell – Every sense creates an experience.  Does the aroma of your business match the music you are playing or compliment the product/services you are selling?
  • Taste – Have you thought about having something special for your customers that reflects the type of experience you want them to have when they visit your place of business? 
  • Touch – What opportunities do you have for your customers to interact with which educates them on your products and/or services?  

 2. Create and use a consistent and memorable brand

  • Remember, a brand is not a logo!  A logo is a piece of the brand. 

 3.  Pursue the business trifecta

  • Know what you do best and do it!  Stay true to your mission and purpose.
  • Do you have a proprietary product line?  Could you?  Have you thought about having a signature items such as a t-shirt, gift soap, food product, etc?  Put your logo and website on the packaging.  Uses as customer loyalty gifts, hostess gifts, sell in your place of business.
  • Do you provide value added services? How can you create a customer experience that helps you develop long term loyal customers?  Perhaps it is as simple as hosting a “how to” workshop.

4.  Focus on customer retention and nurture relationships

  • What are your touch points with your customer?  How often do you “connect” with your customers?  Not to talk to… but relate with!

 5. Events

  •  Do you host events for your business?  Why not?  Have you thought about ways you can focus on reinforcing your services, websites, and tools you have to grow your business.  Perhaps it is as simple as brining your top customers in and let them review your products and services. Or you host customer appreciation events.

 6) Offer Samples  

  • The beverage industry learned years ago that sampling  is a great way to build new customers and build relationships with existing customers.  They learned years ago through sampling you begin shaping the type of experience potential customers has about your products and services.  What can you do?  Perhaps you provide items for a silent auction to benefit a non-profit, you set up a trade shows and let give prospective customers mini-items that gives them the opportunity to learn more about your business.

 7) Work with Other Businesses

  • Partnership marketing is an effective way to help reduce your marketing costs.  Example: Identify businesses who want to reach the sample target market.  Identify marketing strategies that you can work together on to promote your product and services.  Take advantage of bounce back programs with each other.  If a customer spends $500 with you over “x” period of time send them a thank you card with a gift card to the business you are patterning your marketing with.  

 8) Be open 24 Hours A Day!!!!  

  • Latest retail trends indicate that buy 2011 customers will be shopping on line first.  Are you there?  It doesn’t matter what type of business you have you need a website provides customers the opportunity to buy what you are selling.  Is your 24/7/365 Market Place Open for Business?

 For more information about business development programming visit www.longviewchamber.com today!s

29
Jun
10

The Longview Partnership and the Longview Economic Development Corporation Would Like Your HELP!


LEDCO and the Longview Partnership are asking area businesses to help us grow our local economy.   Did you know?  When you buy local, you help our local economy thrive.

What is a local business? 

Any business with operations in the Longview region is a local business. Businesses located here, whether small, family-owned stores or part of a national chain, employ our family members, friends and neighbors and contribute to the local tax base.

 Support the business people who reinvest in our community.

 What is the potential economic impact?

According to our research, if we will spend 5% more of our paychecks in Longview, it could mean more than $225 million per year will impact our local economy! As this money moves through the community, it multiplies and could result in 1,900 jobs.

 Shopping locally positively impacts everyone in our community. 

 What is the potential impact on our community?

The impact, at only 5%, would be overwhelming; enriching our tax base while keeping our tax rates low, improving public services, streets, parks and playgrounds; expanding business, attracting businesses, retaining jobs and creating new jobs. 

Here’s how the I Shop Longview program works: 

  • By visiting local businesses, consumers can be entered into a monthly drawing for prizes and gift certificates provided by participating businesses.
  • The Longview Economic Development Corporation (LEDCO) encourages involvement of all local businesses. The I Shop Longview campaign is intended to assist local businesses, local residents and the City of Longview.
  • Please contact the Longview Economic Development Corporation, 903-753-7878, or Info@LongviewUSA.com, for more information about the I Shop Longview program and other efforts underway to support and promote the Longview community.

  We appreciate your support in helping us grow our local economy!

23
Jun
10

Wellness in the Workplace Makes a Difference!


The Longview Partnership joins forces with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the American Heart Association to promote Start! The Sart! Fit-Friendly Recognition Program was designed for employers to create a culture of physical activity and health to live longer, heart-healthier lives though walking. The program encourages change in the workplace by implementing a worksite physical activity program and promoting a culture of activity.

By participating in the Start! Fit-Friendly Recognition Program you can have access to:

  •  Program resources, including the free Start! Walking Program and My Start! Online fitness tracker
  •  Materials that help promote company wellness programs to employees
  •  Newsletter templates for internal distribution to employees
  • Consultation on CPR/AE (automated external defibrillator) programs

How can your company get more information? Contact American Heart Association at (903) 323-8800 and ask for information on Start! Be sure and tell them the Longview Partnership encouraged you to call!

WORKSITE WELLNESS RESOURCES

The American Heart Association has joined with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and other groups to form the first U.S. Workplace Wellness Alliance. This alliance is a broad based national organization of businesses, heath care advocates, and nonprofit organizations dedicated to the vision that a healthier workforce will result in a stronger and fiscally healthier economy. For more information about the U.S. Workplace Wellness Alliance, please visit uswwa.org.

The American Heart Association’s Start! initiative calls on all Americans and their employers to create a culture of physical activity and health to live longer, heart-healthy lives through walking. It offers resources for employers to implement a walking program in the workplace and track employees’ progress in the program. One of Start’s key components is the Longview Area Start! Heart Walk which aims to get Americans up and moving for 30 minutes.  This year’s Heart Walk is October 30,2010 .   To register, visit heartwalk.kintera.org/longviewtx.

STATISTICS

  • Health care costs in the United States doubled from 1990 to 2001 and are expected to double again by 2012.
  • Chronic illnesses affect more than a third of working-age Americans and the costs associated with chronic diseases account for approximately 75 percent of the nation’s annual health care costs.
  • Over 130 million Americans are employed across the United States and since a significant part of their day is spent at work, comprehensive, culturally sensitive health promotion within the workplace is essential to maintain and improve the nation’s health.
  • Nearly 60 percent of employers’ after-tax profits are spent on corporate health benefits. An estimated 25-30 percent of companies’ medical costs per year are spent on employees with excess health risk. That contrasts to three decades ago when only seven percent of corporate profits paid for health costs.
  • Addressing risk factors early can make a difference. For example, $5.6 billion in heart disease costs could be saved if one-tenth of Americans began a regular walking program.
  • Employer spending on health promotion and chronic disease prevention is a good business investment. Programs have achieved a rate of return on investment ranging from $3 to $15 for each dollar invested with savings realized within 12 to 18 months.

Take action today by calling the American Heart Association, (903) 323-8800.

22
Jun
10

It’s Too Hot to Work Harder! SO WORK SMARTER!


Your Chamber Membership Brings You Tools to Help You Be More Productive…

Join us for these upcoming business development programs:

JULY 8 | 9:00am – 10:00am

When Bricks & Sticks Aren’t Enough: Extending Your Customer Experience Online

This popular 60 minute presentation by Team Halo unpacks the web and social media toolbox and gives basic strategies for approaching these media in way that will make your business more money without taking too much time or money. What is realistic and doable – and why is it even important to consider these media? Do local businesses really need the web?

We’ll show statistics, case studies and give practical guidance that will demonstrate how you really can grow your business beyond your four walls and generate new sales by using the web (and maybe without even taking a second glance at “real” e-commerce).
Sponsored by Longview Main Street

JULY 22 | 9:00am – 10:00am

Thrive! Don’t Just Survive: 7 Secrets to Success in Any Economy

In this 60 minute webinar, Team Halo will discuss 7 marketing strategies that small business owners can use to succeed – no matter what the economy. Yes, there are those growing their businesses dramatically right now, and it’s because they are taking care of the basics and being smart about their marketing. This particular webinar follows the same outline of Team Halo’s most popular live small business owner seminar – you will not want to miss this opportunity to learn how to market your business smarter and grow your small, local business in any economy!

Sponsored by Longview Main Street            

How to Register:             Online (www.longviewchamber.com ) or via phone (903.237.4000). Seating is limited to the first 25 registrants for both webinar sessions.