Business Advisement

The Basin Business Advisors Program (BBA) supports and inspires entrepreneurship and builds economic capacity in Basin communities by strengthening and supporting existing businesses.

We provide free, one-to-one, confidential business advisement to businesses in the Columbia Basin region. Easy application process, quick turnaround to speak to an Advisor.

The COVID-19 pandemic is changing the way we do business and the way we live. As individuals and businesses we need to become more nimble and innovative. The marketplace is changing and we will need to reinvent our businesses and workplaces to remain viable.

Getting online has never been more important. Whether it is updating your business’ “My Google Account”, developing a digital marketing plan or getting an e-commerce website up and running we can help. If you don’t know anything about any of those things, we can help. If you are pretty tech savvy and are working your way to number one on Google, we can help.

The BBA Program is prioritizing assisting as many businesses as possible to get better at using technology; however they want to use it. If you’re not sure where technology may improve your business operations we can do a free assessment with you and make some suggestions.

There is a lot of uncertainty right now on how the next year looks for business. If there will be a second wave, if we will be able to travel, if more services will be interrupted… the list goes on. The BBA Advisors are here to discuss your situation. We can suggest some basic things to get you started but where we really shine is in working one-to-one with you, with your numbers, your resources, your ideas.  What is going to move your business forward.

Quick ideas for basic online presence include:

  • Make sure your hours of operation are correct.
    • If you’re open make sure that’s obvious and how customers can do business with you.
    • If you’re not open, or only taking orders for delivery or pick up or such make that clear.
    • The habits of consumers is changing and one of those habits is checking businesses out online before they visit.
  • Keep your Facebook Page current – as you re-open
    • communicate with your customers and community
    • let them know how you’re keeping them safe.
  • Create a basic website that is current at minimum with contact info, hours of operation and if you are open for commerce.

Identified areas of increased opportunity for using technology:

  • Digital marketing:
    • Social media – beyond boosting a post here and there – getting into how to reach your target market, how to get your message resurfacing through your customers’ feed, making the best use of your ad dollars.
    • Google Ad Words
    • Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
    • Email blasts that create results
    • Effective use of time, money and matching to your brand
  • E-commerce:
    • Moving beyond having clients contact you to make a purchase to full integration
    • Integrated payment methods (taking credit cards,etc, through your website)
    • Integrated inventory – with images and pricing
    • Connection with supply chain
    • Online menu and ordering
    • Tracking of purchases
    • Selling gift cards online, etc.

Technology is only useful if it makes things better. There are many forms of technology a business can employ; here are some other examples: using a point of sale system that assists staff in knowing what is available in the back room, using apps that make the customer experience better,  automated labeling to improve manufacturing productivity,  supporting staff to work remote, tracking supplies in and out, and so much more.

Our Advisors have tools to help assess the readiness of your business to employ technology as well as identify areas in your operation that would benefit from implementing some technology.

You don’t need to know what you want for technology or where you might use it, we can help identify those areas. From there we may need to research or point you an expert who can help you implement a solution.

There is plenty of business as usual happening around the region. Our Advisors are available to speak to you on nearly any subject related to business. We can walk you through how to stabilize your business and get a plan together on moving forward.

Many businesses are capitalizing on opportunities; possible expansion, or perhaps selling their business. We are experiencing a lot of interest in people wanting to enter the business community in the Columbia Basin, now may be the time to get working on that succession plan!

We’re here to help, get in touch.

The online application form gives us a snapshot of your operation, it is the quickest way to receive service and matches you up with an Advisor very easily.

Common areas of support include:

  • determining what government supports are available due to COVID-19
  • planning what to do with loan proceeds to best suit your business
  • managing staff: hiring, laying off, wage subsidies, safety protocols
  • cash flow planning  – every business should be doing this
  • marketing plan- online and otherwise
  • operations
  • deciding how to re-open
  • closing temporarily or permanently
  • strategic planning
  • preparing for financing
  • succession planning
  • branding
  • conserving cash
  • and preparing for the next wave

We provide you with advisement and the tools to manage your business – you make the decisions and implement!

*Please note our program does not provide any form of financial assistance including loans or grants.

Discover Circus

Discover Circus

I found the expertise and advise provided by the Basin Business Advisors program to be absolutely invaluable to making Discover Circus the success that is …

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Crumbs Bakery

Crumbs Bakery

It is such a comfort for a new business owner to know that the Basin Business Advisors Program is available to help out. My business …

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Cleanline Automotive

Cleanline Automotive

We’ve been working with BBA since 2016. Bob, coached us through a pivotal growth stage in our business and helped us take our brand to …

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Austin Engineering

Austin Engineering

It has been great working with the BBA as we’ve grown our business. Both the business courses and the one on one time with Will …

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Participation Requirements

In order to be successful, our program requires the interest, commitment and time of the participating business owner. You must be willing to openly discuss business situations, disclose critical issues that impact your business and share confidential business financial information with our advisors. Please note we will use nondisclosure agreements.

Eligibility

Your business must be:

  • headquartered or management based in the Columbia Basin map;
  • a for-profit business that is actively conducting business and earning revenue;
  • in compliance with all Canadian laws and regulations; and
  • registered and have a business number.

What types of businesses that are ineligible?

  • concept or start-up businesses that have not generated revenue including social enterprises;
  • multi-level marketing businesses; and
  • chain stores

Not sure if you’re eligible? Contact Us and we can talk about it!

Consulting Cost Sharing

Our Advisors may recommend the services of a specialized independent business consultant to provide further analysis and recommendations on a specific area of business management. The BBA program provides a contribution to the cost of specialized business consulting services.

Ready to get started?

Each business is required to complete our online application form. The information gathered helps our Advisors to determine your businesses’ eligibility. Once we receive your application form, an Advisor will be in touch to further discuss your needs.

Apply for services, we’ll be in touch!

Have questions before you apply? Contact Us and we can talk about it!

If you are an Agriculture Based Business, you may prefer to reach out to our Agricultural Specialist Learn More.

If you are a Social Enterprise, you may want to check out this page.