Summerfest 2022 is coming this August, and we hope you will help make it a big success. Once again, there will be live music, a beer garden, bouncy houses, vendors, our Magnolia parade, and more. But we need to have a volunteer workforce to make it happen.
The misperception from some is that Summerfest is run by some outside event organization or a paid entity. This could not be further from the truth. This Magnolia-run event is only made possible by volunteers from our community. It is dependent on our friends and neighbors working together to make the festival one to remember!
We ask YOU to give back and volunteer to make this year’s Summerfest a well-run event. There are untold opportunities to make a difference and enjoy the camaraderie and satisfaction of volunteering at our local festival.
Join us on Monday, June 27th at 6:30 pm for an informational meeting with members of the core planning team of Summerfest. Starbucks and its hardworking staff will be our meeting host in the heart of Magnolia Village (3300 W McGraw St). Enjoy some light appetizers and tasty bites from our friends at Metropolitan Market. Starbucks will also donate an array of beverages for meeting attendees.
Please join us to learn more about Summerfest, our community’s iconic summer event, and how you can volunteer and help spread the word to recruit others to be a part of the celebration. Remember, no paid group runs Summerfest – It depends upon Magnolians to make it happen. See you at Starbucks on Monday, June 27th at 6:30 pm – we’ll have some fun!
Are you on TikTok? Maybe you’re just figuring out video and livestreaming and you have written off TikTok as a site for kids.
While you aren’t wrong about that (32.5% of users are between 10 and 19, while 41 percent of TikTok users are between 16 and 24 years old), the TikTok adult audience has grown at a rate of about 5.5 times in just 18 months.
The app now boasts 1 billion active users. TikTok videos are becoming a way to pass time for many people and the average user spends about 52 minutes per day on the app. It also has huge reach. 167 million TikTok videos are watched in a minute on average.
So, if you’re looking to reach an under 35 audience in your business, TikTok might be the avenue for you. Here’s what you need to know as a beginning user:
TikTok Basics for Business
If you’re new to TikTok or are considering it for your business, it’s a little different than other social media platforms.
TikTok is a video platform. Some people lip sync, act, create short video blogs, or showcase their products. Humor is a popular driver for likes on this platform.
Before creating anything, think about visuals and short, punchy ideas. This is not the place for a long diatribe. The audience is constantly swiping and liking. Comments will tend to be shorter and emoticon driven.
There are lots of editing options in app, but some people still prefer to use other programs (like Canva) to create videos and then upload them to TikTok. Going viral on this platform seems a little easier than Facebook or YouTube.
Like most social media platforms, you can—and should—create a business account, instead of a personal one. The main reason for this is that it will keep you out of trouble. A creator account is a copyright infringement waiting to happen because the app allows users to attach music (and not the safe royalty-free kind either) to their videos. While Kenny Chesney may not sue a parent for adding his latest song to the background of a video of their kid’s first step, you can be certain he’s not going to want people associating his music with their product (not that he has anything against your product, of course. It’s just that he—and any other music creator—is going to want to be compensated for his music. While I don’t speak for Kenny, proving me wrong about how he feels regarding your product by using his music without permission could be quite costly for your business). It’s just too easy to get yourself in copyright troubles with a creator or personal account.
Business accounts have music available as well but none of it will get you in trouble with rights holders. The music available on the business side is royalty-free. A business account also has analytics that personal accounts don’t.
Like Instagram, website links are a bit of a challenge at first. TikTok doesn’t let you have a link in your bio until you reach 1,000 followers. It used to allow businesses to add a link before the 1,000-follower mark but that changed in January. These days, you must meet the follower threshold for links and the ability to go live.
TikTok is another hashtag driven site. There are very specific hashtags used here. For instance, for writers there’s #BookTok, #writertok, and #authorsoftiktok. There are hashtags for business like #biztock and #smallbiztok. Take some time to research these. They are very specific but will help you find your ideal audience.
Filters and Film-Ready Face
If you’re like me, you may have some hesitancy being in front of the camera. Heck, most of us barely make it out of pajamas these days, let alone put on makeup or look presentable on camera. To this challenge, there are several solutions:
You don’t have to show your face. People do a lot of things with babies, pets, products, etc and subtitles.
Use a filter. You can alter the way you look using filters. I understand there’s even a perfect skin and makeup filter (I’m still looking for that one.).
Record your videos on “shower day.” You can make yourself camera ready and record several at once.
TikTok, like other apps and social media platforms, allows for sponsored videos. They appear in a user’s stream marked as sponsored but they blend in quite well. Most businesses that pursue this option also use either influencers to record the video or create their own. This is not the place for a formal commercial. You want to think about fun entertainment, not a salesy pitch.
The best way to figure out TikTok is to go in and start playing around. (Here are the app’s directions for video creation.) If you’re older than 40, you may feel like you’re crashing a kid’s party at Chuck E Cheese at first. But stick with it. Scroll through until you find a video you like. When you do, you can use the same effects they use by clicking on the links in the video.
On TikTok, imitation is the sincerest compliment. No one thinks anything of copying someone else’s Tok (unless that someone else is your competitor. You might want to avoid that.)
You can create, like, and share content on this platform. If you entertain and are true to yourself and your business, you’ll quickly amass followers and likes (they are counted separately as are your video views). Keep in mind the social rules you use on other platforms should be used here too. When people comment on your Tok, respond back. Don’t simply publish. Like other people’s work and comment on their posts as well.
Christina R. Metcalf (formerly Green) is a marketer who enjoys using the power of story and refuses to believe meaningful copy can be written by bots. She helps chamber and small business professionals find the right words when they don’t have the time or interest to do so.
Christina hates exclamation points and loves road trips. Say hi on Twitter or reach out on Facebook.
Do you want people to think about your business before all others? Of course, you do. The first step to patronizing your business is remembering it exists.
Imagine you have a free evening, and you want to go out to eat. It doesn’t matter how amazing the food is at the new place down the street; if it doesn’t pop into your mind, you won’t be going there.
The same is true of your potential customers. They need to think of you to spend money with you.
So how do you ensure you’re top of mind and that they will think about your business over the competition? You need to find a way to stand out and be memorable. A good product or service is the first step. Good customer service is also a solid choice. But to truly stand out you must do something slightly different.
Ways to Ensure Your Business Is Top of Mind
Hosting an event at your business is a great way to help people remember you. It also provides an experience, and many individuals admit to enjoying them over physical purchases. When you host an event encourage people to share the occasion on social media for even greater reach.
There are several types of events that draw crowds:
Sampling your offerings or services. You can host an event that is directly related to what you do. For instance, a restaurant may have an invitation-only, special tasting night to sample its new menu.
Education event. You could also offer an evening out based around something that you sell. For instance, a yarn store may hold classes on how to knit.
Block party. Celebrate your customers and potential customers by throwing a party outside your store. A patio furniture store held a parking lot party every weekend with a band and hot dogs. It drew a crowd and people lingered. It was a nice tie in with the product they sold—outdoor furniture. It helped people imagine hosting their own parties later with their new furniture.
A Facebook Group
Depending on the nature of your business, and the things your ideal customer/target audience may have in common, a Facebook group can connect your buyers to you and to one another. This idea works well when you can find a connection or mutual interest among your customers. For instance, a bookstore might create a Facebook group for writers or for fans of a specific genre. In a Facebook group you can share information and flash sales, stream events, and invite your audience to talk about their favorite books. The online community will keep your brand center stage while uniting and engaging your audience.
Have you noticed that a lot of companies are charging their customers a monthly fee for some sort of discount or benefit? It began with Amazon Prime, where customers paid an annual fee for free shipping. The program has expanded beyond that now, but you can certainly start with one benefit like that.
Panera has created an unlimited coffee subscription where coffee lovers are auto-charged a fee each month and given a free cup of coffee daily. Both programs drive sales (and loyalty). When people pay for something, they want to get their money’s worth. Often, that means buying from one store over another because they’re part of a savings club.
However, like gift certificates, there may be people who pay every month and don’t use your services. That’s OK too as the subscription (even if it’s only a few dollars) is a source of revenue you did not have before.
If you want strong sales at your business, you need to ensure that your target market thinks about you. You can do that through email marketing, social media participation, or these three ideas. But whatever you do, make sure you use consistent branding and tone. After all, you want them to remember you, not question who you are.
Last October, Halloween-in-the-Village had a different look and purpose in Magnolia. Though the Magnolia Chamber of Commerce made the hard choice to cancel Halloween-in-the-Village 2021, it worked alongside merchants and Chamber members to collect the dollars usually used for purchasing candy and pooling these funds to donate to local schools and assisting students.
Earlier this month, the Magnolia Chamber of Commerce volunteer leadership team was delighted to deliver gift cards to Magnolia’s four local schools after raising hundreds of dollars to support students and families in need. Families from Catherine Blaine K-8, Lawton Elementary, Magnolia Elementary, and Our Lady of Fatima School will use the gift cards to purchase food and clothing items at local retail outlets.
Patrick Gray, the acting Principal at Catherine Blaine K-8, shared his feelings upon receipt of the gift cards, hand-delivered by Chamber President Daniela Eng and Vice President Thomas Powell:
“We appreciate the support the [Magnolia] Chamber of Commerce has provided for families in our community. Schools are often the primary connection point for families and children in need of assistance, and having the flexibility to provide immediate financial help can have a huge impact for these families,” said Principal Gray. “Our community is stronger when neighbors support each other and I’m grateful to be able to work in a place where this support is so evident.”
The Magnolia Chamber is delighted to support our local schools and further establish the relationship between our communities’ businesses and local government and faith-based institutions.
“Our Chamber’s mission is to foster connections between Magnolia’s businesses, residents, and community groups. These critical relationships add vibrancy to the neighborhood and bring relevance to the Chamber’s activities,” said Jason Thibeaux, Executive Director of the Magnolia Chamber of Commerce. “We are immensely grateful to Deb Bluestein, owner of Modele’s Home Furnishings. It was her inspired idea to collect the dollars usually used by Village merchants for purchasing Halloween candy and work with the local schools to donate for the best and highest use needs for the students.”
The Magnolia Chamber hopes the pandemic becomes more manageable in the months ahead, and we look forward to hosting Halloween-in-the-Village in 2022. In the meantime, we take great pleasure in partnering with our local schools and supporting students with meaningful “treats” that make life just a bit easier during these challenging times.
Seattle Pacific University (SPU) is hosting a “by appointment only” Curative Covid testing site. The site is a kiosk inside the Student Union Building located at 315 W Bertona St, Seattle, WA 98119 and is open to the public by appointment. People with appointments may use the SPU parking lots since this is not a drive-up testing site.
The Port of Seattle’s Fisherman’s Terminal, located in the NE Quadrant of Magnolia’s light manufacturing and industrial district, will soon be home to the Maritime Innovation Center. The center will help the region’s maritime industry adopt advanced technologies and stimulate innovative entrepreneurship. Promoting knowledge transfer, business incubation, and workforce development are significant needs to successfully address maritime innovation challenges and opportunities. The innovation center will help sustain maritime industries, support blue tech start-ups and entrepreneurs, and help the Port modernize operations and key lines of business.
The historic Ship Supply Building will be restored and modernized into a LEED-certified and environmentally friendly facility. It will include 15,000 total square feet with a mix of working space for incubators, accelerators, and anchor tenants along with fabrication and event space. The facility will be a “Living Building” with advanced sustainability and resiliency features.
This center will benefit Magnolia, the Ballard-Interbay Manufacturing and Industrial Center, and our region’s maritime community in several ways:
Job creation. Creating new employment opportunities for local residents and youth in the participating startups
Enhanced image. Building the region’s reputation as an economic center of excellence for growth in the sustainable blue economy
Increased entrepreneurialism. Elevating awareness of entrepreneurs and stimulating confidence in the maritime industry to create new technologies, products and services
Business development. Sparking new opportunities for established area businesses to develop relationships with early-stage companies
Increased tax revenue. Generating a larger, more diverse tax base to support public services and contribute to livability and health
Workforce development. Nurturing the next generation of diverse, inclusive, and representative maritime workforce with technological expertise and access to clean, healthy, living-wage jobs
Home of the Innovation Accelerator
New ideas in one of the most traditional industrial sectors in Washington are critical for a thriving economy while decarbonizing the environment. The Maritime Innovation Center will become the home base for the Accelerator Program that’s managed by Washington Maritime Blue, a developing cluster dedicated to supporting a sustainable and diverse maritime industry, and the Port of Seattle. It is expected the Center will generate a net positive operating income after the first year and a critical element of the budding Maritime Blue cluster development.
The start of a new mandatory payroll tax to fund Washington’s long-term care program has been delayed.
The Washington State Legislature and Gov. Inslee announced plans on December 17th to change and improve the WA Cares Fund during the 2022 legislative session, which is scheduled to conclude in March 2022.
The governor directed the Employment Security Department to not collect premiums from employers until April 2022 or until the Legislature gives further direction due to discussion where both legislators and the Governor have identified areas that need adjustments.
The Governor’s actions in mid-December 2021 mean that the state will not collect those funds until the Legislature sorts through the identified issues. Employers will NOT be subject to penalties and interest for not withholding fees from employees’ wages during this transition.”
However, the existing law still directs employers to begin collecting premiums from their employees beginning Jan. 1, 2022. Each employer will need to decide whether they will implement the law as it stands or await legislative action.
The Magnolia Chamber of Commerce sent letters to Mayor-Elect Bruce Harrell and Seattle City Councilmember-Elect Sara Nelson and shared congratulations on their respective victories to elected office. The letters also expressed the ongoing needs and concerns of small business and neighborhoods such as Magnolia. We also shared our commitment to inviting both to the community to talk directly with merchants, meet Magnolia residents, and view various streetscape improvements happening across Magnolia’s various business districts. The Magnolia Chamber will continue its ongoing efforts to build productive and positive relationships with our local lawmakers, related administrative agencies, and connect elected leaders with their constituents.
To read the letter to Mayor-Elect Harrell, click icon below:
To read the letter to Councilmember-Elect Nelson, click icon below:
The following is A GREAT, must-read article from the Chamber Professional network and our friends at FrankJKenny.com. Check out the 16 reasons to shop local instead of online.
There is nothing more convenient than whipping out your phone, typing in a URL (or opening an app), perusing offerings, and hitting a few buttons to buy something…anything…everything. We even get our groceries that way these days. But as convenient as online shopping seems, there are several reasons to shop local.
In person is the way to go this Small Business Season. If you can suspend disbelief for a few minutes, we’ll explain why.
Our Favorite Reasons to Shop Local During Small Business Season
Yes, online shopping is convenient. You don’t have to change out of your PJs and it’s always open. But in the t-chart of holiday shopping options, there are a lot of reasons to shop local. Here are a few of our favorites:
You’re supporting your neighbors.
When you support Small Business Season and shop local, you are supporting your neighbors and they are more likely, in turn, to keep the money you spent with them local as well (for every $100 spent locally, $68 of it stays local).
You are able to get in-person advice.
Not sure of the right size, color, or other option? Maybe you want to buy something but don’t know what else you need to make that purchase complete (like buying a fishing rod without any hooks or lures). An in-person shopping experience can help you straighten out the choices. Small business owners offer complete information and suggestions and you can ask questions about those suggestions. Doing that via chat online can be cumbersome and delayed as they are answering questions from several other shoppers at the same time.
You know what you’re getting.
Have you ever ordered something online only to be disappointed when it arrives? Maybe it’s smaller than you thought or the color is just too much. Online images can be very hard to discern. (Remember that dress a few years back? What color was that any way?) If you don’t read the description carefully, your item may be smaller (or larger) than expected and may not include things you had assumed came with it. Even when you do read the description, some items are sized differently or have unexpected variations. Don’t even get us started on what happens then.
For every $100 spent locally, $68 of it stays local.
Local yields easier returns. Even though you have a clear understanding of what you’re buying when you buy in person, sometimes you need to return your purchase. When you do, it’s easier to do it locally than to send something back to an online store. Between paying for shipping to going to the post office and insuring it, bringing it back to a local business is generally easier than online returns.
If you’re not satisfied with what you purchased, but it’s not something you can bring back (like a service or a food item), you know how to get in touch with the local provider. Some online sellers make it impossible to speak to a human. Try arguing your point with AI that uses keywords and automated language responses. Talking to the local business owner is much easier and they may be able to suggest something that is more along the lines of what you’re looking for.
Local shopping becomes an experience.
Yes, online shopping is quick, but you also have no memory of doing it. This can lead to overbuying. How many times during the holiday do you come home to find a package on your door step and you can’t remember what you purchased? You’ll remember when you go out. Plus, when you shop in-person or local, you can invite friends, family, or just make a pleasurable outing for yourself. This creates appealing memories of a wonderful seasonal experience.
It brings on the holiday spirit.
When you are out among the sounds and smells of the holiday, it brightens your mood. Who doesn’t love sparkling lights, glitter, snow (real or fake), and all of the happy tunes of the season? It’s hard to get those same smiles shopping online.
You may miss the best things when you only go online.
When you shop online, you do a few searches for things you are looking for. You are less apt to stumble across the perfect gift or item because you are on a targeted mission and only see what the online store presents. When you’re shopping in person, there are a lot of serendipitous moments where something catches your eye and you walk out knowing you found a treasure.
You meet and interact with people.
When you shop in-person, you meet and interact with people. We have been sequestered long enough. There’s something to be said from those chance meetings that occur when walking around town. Who knows–you could meet your next business partner or a former friend. From the warm smile of the business owner to a suggestion, compliment, or affirmation you receive from a fellow shopper, there are many times when these sorts of introductions can be very helpful.
You’ll receive better reviews.
Sure, online reviews are helpful but so are reviews from people around you. Plus, people you meet in person who are commenting on what you’re buying have a personal connection. They are vouching for the item or dish face-to-face. If you have questions about what they’re saying, you can ask. Online reviews are one-sided with very little chance for follow-up from the original poster.
No worries about delivery this small business season when shopping local.
With ports backed up and short-staffing throughout the supply chain, there’s a lot of talk about potential delivery delays this holiday. If you shop in-person, you won’t need to worry about this.
In-person shopping is perfect for procrastinators.
Sure, there are some online mega retailers who can get an item to you same day depending on where you live, but most times–especially as we get closer to the actual holiday–your best bet for last-minute gifts is a local shop. If you’re a procrastinator, feel free to take this reason to shop local as permission. You’ll feel less stressed about waiting , plus you won’t be depending on someone else’s delivery schedule.
Displays help you visualize.
Store displays are better than “you might also like” options in online stores. After all, the online suggestions are based on the buying patterns of others or using products the online retailer links together. Store displays are created (and stores are arranged) to help you find what you need and want. Collections are curated with the shopper in mind. You may find a lot of treasurers browsing that way.
Window shopping can lead to ideas.
When you shop in-person around the holidays you’ll be treated to beautiful window and decoration displays. These could inspire your holiday home décor or help you figure out something for your hard-to-buy-for aunt. A display may also draw you into trying a new business that you hadn’t noticed before. There are so many serendipitous possibilities when shopping in-person this Small Business Season.
You could find your next job.
If you shop in-person, you’ll quickly realize how many businesses are hiring. Who knows? You might decide to work at your favorite shop over the holidays.
One’s couch has never been the setting for a Hallmark holiday movie, but Main Street certainly has.
And we all love those movies, don’t we?
We aren’t telling you to never shop online again. Online shopping is simply too convenient and there are many times when you can get things delivered online faster than you are able to clear your schedule and shop in-person. There are also many local sellers that have an online presence so you can buy online and still “shop local.”
Still, there are several reasons to shop local, including the ability to spread some holiday cheer to your local businesses this Small Business Season.
Those business owners would just love to see your smiling face and the serious ones of Mr. Jackson, Hamilton, and Washington.
This Small Business Season, let’s give Magnolia’s local and small businesses something to be thankful for.
Let’s give them the gift of our support. Love local, Shop Magnolia.
The local election results from the evening on November 2, 2021 have produced a new Mayor for Seattle, the re-election of a long reigning King County Executive and a new Councilmember for the Seattle City Council. As of Friday, November 5, all three marquee city-wide races – the Mayor, City Attorney, and Council Position 9 – have been called based on voting trends over the three days following election night, though outstanding votes are still being counted.
Elections will be certified by King County Elections on November 23rd at 3pm. To keep current on daily vote counts thru certification on November 23rd, click here.
Of additional interest, the School Board position that represents the Magnolia area was decided and there were upset losses for two longtime Port of Seattle incumbents.
Below, we provide the election counts from election night through Friday, Nov. 5. We also link political insights from KOUW, Seattle’s local independent, non-profit newsroom.