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Nine Resolutions For Small Business Owners To Stand By

January 5, 2021 - Alliance to Save the American Dream

With the new year officially underway, now is the perfect time for small business owners to consider their plans for the new year. Below are nine New Year’s resolutions that small businesses should think about. 

1. Have a clear direction. Ask yourself what the end goal of your business is. If you don’t know the destination, you cannot follow a successful path. Write out different goals that you have for 2021 to focus on achieving your vision!

2. Know your customer. To increase sales and find new customers, you have to understand who your customer is. Marketing stems from this very point. Understand their needs and what desires fuel them. This will paint a better picture. 

3. Focus on your channels. It can be challenging managing multiple pages at once. From posting on Facebook to scheduling tweets, it can be a nightmare. In 2021, stop trying to manage too many channels. Focus on those that matter to your audience. Pick the channels that you know matter most to your audience. 

4. Only talk about what matters. In a 2020 Forbes interview, brand strategist Pamela Barba said, “Don’t lose their attention by promoting yourself all the time.” This is crucial advice. Learn about what interests your audience and what they want to see.

5. Reflect on your mission statement. A recent Business News Daily article emphasized the importance of mission statements. As a business owner, you need to understand what makes you stand out and what your values are.

6. Pinpoint your niche. Competing as a small business comes down to what your niche is. What audience will love your product the most? Focus on these customers and plan your message and budgets accordingly. 

7. Learn something new. Running a business is more than a full-time job, but learning something new can help fuel innovation and expand your horizons. 

8. Plan to save time. Administrative tasks may seem tedious and time consuming, but taking control of your accounts will save you time in the long run. 

9. Engage with your customers. Make the time to engage with your existing customers more in 2021. Spark conversations in your store and send them surveys. Use these tools to seek honest and genuine feedback that you can act on it. Your business will grow from this. 

The Alliance to Save the American Dream is a non-profit organization dedicated to three core goals.

1. Develop an Ideas Factory to give small businesses and industries a centralized place to share innovative ideas that must be considered.

2. Build a unique Resources portal for small businesses to go to for answers or resources that address a wide range of issues or challenges.

3. Offer a new networking opportunity for small business owners to connect while also giving them a platform to share their own personal stories.

How One High School Dropout Became His Own Boss

December 18, 2020 - Alliance to Save the American Dream

Move over Uber Eats and Grubhub, there is a new delivery service in town. 

Profitboss, founded by 21-year-old Adam Guild, enables restaurants to deliver meals for free or at a significantly lower price than competitors. The app also allows restaurant owners to track and utilize their customer data. 

Guild’s unique background has allowed his company to prosper. His passion for technology dates back to his teenage days when we spent hours creating Minecraft servers and earning money for managing them. This led him to lose interest in his high school curriculum and drop out. 

“I’ve had a very weird life,” Guild said in an interview with Fox Business. “I built my first technology project when I was 9.”

When Guild’s mother launched her own pet-grooming business in a Los Angeles neighborhood, he stepped in and helped her reinvent her website. 

“At my mom’s birthday that year – it was me, my mom and my brother – and I remember, at the end of the dinner, she told us that this was the first year in as long as she could remember that she was really looking forward to the future again. She was re-energized by this business, and she found a purpose and passion through her team and all of her amazing customers,” he said. 

The idea behind Profitboss was to help local restaurant owners increase in-store traffic. But like most businesses across the nation, COVID-19 had other plans for them. 

“We had about four months of cash left. I had to lay off a bunch of people on the team, and everything possible that could have gone wrong did go wrong. I thought I was going to lose everything.”

As Guild, his employees, and his restaurant partners continue to navigate the reality of lockdowns and curfews, together they will adapt accordingly: one delivery at a time.

The Alliance to Save the American Dream is a non-profit organization dedicated to three core goals.

1. Develop an Ideas Factory to give small businesses and industries a centralized place to share innovative ideas that must be considered.

2. Build a unique Resources portal for small businesses to go to for answers or resources that address a wide range of issues or challenges.

3. Offer a new networking opportunity for small business owners to connect while also giving them a platform to share their own personal stories.

Resources and Useful Tips

December 14, 2020 - Alliance to Save the American Dream

Save the American Dream encourages small businesses across a wide array of sectors to utilize resources to help them navigate the walls that COVID-19 continues to build. 

We continue to compile resources and helpful tips to guide business owners as they try to maintain their physical and financial health. Our resource page will provide you with a platform to connect with agencies that can help. 

Whether you’re looking for financial advice, marketing assistance or a single point of contact to help you navigate the range of services available from federal and state organizations, we encourage you to view each tool carefully.

The Covid-19 pandemic has presented both wide scale tragedy and economic downfall. Small businesses, especially, have been threatened and have often been forced to permanently shut their doors. A recent Yelp study has discovered that nearly 100,000 small businesses have gone out of business since the start of the pandemic. The Visual Capitalist mapped out the uneven recovery that small businesses throughout the U.S. are experiencing. 

But help is out there and we are here to provide guidance. For more information, please visit our resources page to access the helpful links that include readily available partners, resources, financial aid, and experts. 

The Alliance to Save the American Dream is a non-profit organization dedicated to three core goals.

1. Develop an Ideas Factory to give small businesses and industries a centralized place to share innovative ideas that must be considered.

2. Build a unique Resources portal for small businesses to go to for answers or resources that address a wide range of issues or challenges.

3. Offer a new networking opportunity for small business owners to connect while also giving them a platform to share their own personal stories.

For more information, visit savetheamericandream.com. 

Restaurants Pushback Against New Shutdown Orders

December 5, 2020 - Alliance to Save the American Dream
food booth

Restaurant owners and industry groups across the United States are pushing back as city and state officials impose new restrictions on restaurants and bars. Filed lawsuits are piling up against the bans and targeted policies as rallies in support of dining rooms grow momentum. 

In early November, Illinois was the first to reinstate the ban on indoor dining. Michigan, Washington, Minnesota, Kentucky and most California regions have since followed. New Mexico and Oregon have put an end to table service entirely, while New York City officials have also warned about indoor dining suspensions.

Mike Coughlin, owner of Village Tavern and Grill in Illinois, is openly breaking a state order. Like other restaurant owners, he abided by local rules early in the pandemic and invested in a bigger outdoor patio space. He also spent thousands of dollars on plexi-glass dividers and a $10,000 air-purification system

When the state of Illinois suspended indoor dining when Covid-19 cases surged, Coughlin opted to keep his dining room open, despite the risk of fines.

“You pay my bills, you pay my taxes, you pay my employees, and I’ll close,” he said, addressing Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker, in an interview with the Wall Street Journal. “I’m not going to be the guy with a boarded-up building because I follow someone else’s science.”

As restaurant owners and protestors continue to express their frustrations and concerns, businesses will embrace the support to stay open. 

The Alliance to Save the American Dream is a non-profit organization dedicated to three core goals.

1. Develop an Ideas Factory to give small businesses and industries a centralized place to share innovative ideas that must be considered.

2. Build a unique Resources portal for small businesses to go to for answers or resources that address a wide range of issues or challenges.

3. Offer a new networking opportunity for small business owners to connect while also giving them a platform to share their own personal stories.

Government’s PPP Program Lost Millions to Scammers

November 30, 2020 - Alliance to Save the American Dream

In a new nationwide trend, fraud cases related to the Paycheck Protection Program continue to arise. 

For countless businesses, the PPP was a lifeline that provided loans and guidance in the early weeks of the COVID-19 pandemic. As 2020 comes to a close, it is now clear that the quick rollout of the massive relief program in a matter of months has presented a set of concerning findings. 

Hannibal Ware, the Small Business Administration Inspector General, stated that there are strong indicators of widespread abuse and fraud. In an interview with Pursuit Magazine, he emphasized the severity of the findings. 

“Inspectors General across the Federal Government have seen fraud in programs aimed at the pandemic response. SBA’s pandemic response programs are a particularly attractive target for fraudsters, and SBA OIG’s oversight work has identified gaps in SBA’s internal control environment for these programs. We have seen everything from identity theft to false statements, to fraud schemes perpetuated by sophisticated crime rings.”

Among the list of federal cases, one high school coach is accused of pocketing nearly $1 million dollars and a Florida resident allegedly used his PPP loan to purchase a Lamborghini. 

Seven individuals have also been indicted in Houston, accused of collecting nearly $16 million. 

In Alabama alone, 70,331 businesses received a total of $6.245 billion in PPP loans. News organizations have since filed lawsuits in federal courts to enforce the release of the applications, arguing that other SBA loans are public record. 

Caroline Sicone, executive director of the non-partisan government taxpayer watchdog group, Accountable.US, argues that the PPP loans presented an opportunity for wealthy companies to benefit. 

“For every deserving business that got a loan there was a well connected, wealthy special interest that didn’t need the money,” she said. “All of this should be released. It’s taxpayer money and has always been released in the past.”

As more cases shed a light on the mistakes and lack of regulation, the instances of fraud present an opportunity for hindsight and a lesson for the future. 

The Alliance to Save the American Dream is a non-profit organization dedicated to three core goals.

1. Develop an Ideas Factory to give small businesses and industries a centralized place to share innovative ideas that must be considered.

2. Build a unique Resources portal for small businesses to go to for answers or resources that address a wide range of issues or challenges.

3. Offer a new networking opportunity for small business owners to connect while also giving them a platform to share their own personal stories.

U.S. Central Bank to Reduce Minimum Borrowing Amount to $100,000

November 20, 2020 - Alliance to Save the American Dream
counting money in person's hands.
counting money in person’s hands.

Federal Reserve Chairman, Jerome Powell, is calling on Congress to return to the negotiating table to push another round of stimulus to help pull the U.S. economy out of a coronavirus-induced recession. 

“All of us lived through the years after the global financial crisis, and for a number of those years fiscal policy was very tight,” Powell said in a virtual press conference on Nov. 5. “Further [economic] support is likely to be needed to avoid further spread of the virus and help individuals who, with the expiration of the CARES Act payments, are seeing their savings dwindle.”

Powell spoke about close contact industries, such as restaurants, and emphasized their need for targeted, sustained help. Rates will be kept at near zero until they believe that they are at maximum employment, a huge push to put fiscal stimulus into the economy. 

Last month at the National Association for Business Economics Virtual Annual Meeting, Powell reiterated the fact that small businesses are struggling. 

“Too little support would lead to a weak recovery, creating unnecessary hardship for households and businesses,” he said in his speech. 

On Friday, the Federal Reserve announced its Main Street lending program will be adjusted to better support small businesses. The U.S. central bank will reduce the minimum amount that can be borrowed to $100,000 from $250,000. In addition, the fees associated with the loans have been adjusted to encourage smaller loans.

In an interview with Fox News, Frank Knapp, Jr., co-chair of Small Business for America’s Future, emphasized the need to prioritize policies that will help small businesses recover from the devastating effects of the pandemic. 

“We also encourage our current Congressional lawmakers to absorb the message voters sent in electing Biden: they want leaders to take the pandemic seriously, listen to science and stop with the political theater,” he said. “Do not wait until after the inauguration to pass legislation that will help small business weather Covid-19. Get it done now. Small businesses cannot wait any longer.”

Small business owners continue to vocalize the need for stable and solutions-oriented governance. The need for legislation to pass quickly is clear. 

The Alliance to Save the American Dream is a non-profit organization dedicated to three core goals.

1. Develop an Ideas Factory to give small businesses and industries a centralized place to share innovative ideas that must be considered.

2. Build a unique Resources portal for small businesses to go to for answers or resources that address a wide range of issues or challenges.

3. Offer a new networking opportunity for small business owners to connect while also giving them a platform to share their own personal stories.

For more information, visit savetheamericandream.com. 

U.S. Economy is Slowly Bouncing Back

November 9, 2020 - Alliance to Save the American Dream

November 4, 2020 – Alliance to Save the American Dream

As businesses push to reopen and consumer spending continues to increase, the U.S. economy is experiencing a v-shaped recovery, according to White House economist, Joe LaVorgna. 

Following the Commerce Department’s third-quarter gross domestic product calculation, data shows that the U.S. economy grew at a record pace. GDP, the measure of goods and services produced, rose by 33.1% on an annualized basis from July to September, surpassing expectations by economists. 

Despite the growth, the economy is still 3.5% smaller than it was at the end of 2019 and the previous quarter contraction’s detrimental effects are still being felt by Americans and businesses across the country. 

LaVorgna, the chief economist of the National Economic Council, said in an interview with Fox Business that GDP “also captures investment spending and what we saw were some really strong durable goods orders.”

He further explained that durable goods are “items that last more than three years” and include “things that companies invest in, whether it’s computers, or mainframes, laptops, storage, all those sorts of things that anyone uses to operate a business. Those are accelerating and that does jive with what’s happening on the labor side, which is a real big pick up in hiring.”

The Commerce Department data is also suggesting that quarter 4 will also represent solid growth and production increases will lead to a surge in hiring. 

According to the Brookings Institute, the economy was growing at an annualized pace of 2% to 3% prior to the pandemic. 

The data does present a promising road to recovery and growth as 2020 comes to an end. 

The Alliance to Save the American Dream is a non-profit organization dedicated to three core goals.

1. Develop an Ideas Factory to give small businesses and industries a centralized place to share innovative ideas that must be considered.

2. Build a unique Resources portal for small businesses to go to for answers or resources that address a wide range of issues or challenges.

3. Offer a new networking opportunity for small business owners to connect while also giving them a platform to share their own personal stories.

For more information, visit savetheamericandream.com. 

A Shift in Consumer Behavior

November 3, 2020 - Alliance to Save the American Dream

As restaurants and bars across the country fight to stay in business, recent data shows that chain restaurants are bouncing back quickly. From Kansas City to New York City, takeout and delivery options are in demand and keeping business’s lights on. 

2020 has been a challenging year for restaurants and business owners alike, yet Yelp’s third-quarter Economic Average report presents promising data. According to the new data, released on October 22, reveals that 6,497 new restaurants and food businesses opened in September. 

The owners that opened their doors in the third quarter implemented specific measures such as order ahead menus and distant friendly layouts, the report said. 

P.F.Chang’s, the Asian-inspired restaurant chain, has measured such consumer habits and is expanding its off-premise restaurants as a result. In New York’s theatre district, the chain has opened its first to-go location in the state. P.F. Chang’s opened three to-go locations in Chicago earlier this year. 

“Our new To Go model is effectively a response to consumer behavior,” P.F. Chang’s CEO, Damola Adamolekun, told FOX Business. “We’ve noticed an increase in off-premise engagement with delivery, catering, takeout, which grew to be about 25% of our business in 2019. With that continuing growth, the To Go concept is really a way to reach more guests in more places.”

Three more to-go locations will follow the theatre district’s opening by the end of the year, with additional plans to add another 20 locations nationwide by 2021. 

P.F. Chang’s new model focuses on densely populated urban areas and smaller footprints. This allows the chain to have a place in larger market spaces and attract new customers. Each to-go location will be approximately a quarter of the size of their traditional restaurants, making them more affordable and manageable. The chain also plans to integrate delivery services in the near future. 

The Alliance to Save the American Dream is a non-profit organization dedicated to three core goals.

1. Develop an Ideas Factory to give small businesses and industries a centralized place to share innovative ideas that must be considered.

2. Build a unique Resources portal for small businesses to go to for answers or resources that address a wide range of issues or challenges.

3. Offer a new networking opportunity for small business owners to connect while also giving them a platform to share their own personal stories.

For more information, visit savetheamericandream.com. 

Applying for PPP Forgiveness

October 23, 2020 - Alliance to Save the American Dream

Starting in August, the Small Business Administration (SBA) began accepting applications to have loans that were issued forgiven and in early October began issuing forgiveness to those that were approved.  More than $500 billion in forgivable loans were issued through the government’s aid initiative. As small business owners across the nation continue to submit applications, the Alliance to Save the American Dream has several key tips for small business owners to acknowledge before doing so. 

Prior to applying, those who borrowed from the Paycheck Protection Program should contact the same lender who issued the loan. The lender will submit your application to the SBA where the level of forgiveness is determined. 

The top PPP lender, JPMorgan Chase, emails customers on a limited basis and invites them to begin the application process based on when they received their loan. 

“This has helped us test the SBA’s submission process and identify some common pitfalls that we can help customers avoid,” Jen Roberts, chief executive of Chase Business Banking, said in an interview with The Wall Street Journal. 

Small business owners who are seeking forgiveness may have to wait for their lender to implement the proper technology and personnel before they begin accepting applications. 

In order to have the full amount forgiven, PPP borrowers will have to show that at least 60% of their loan is used to cover payroll costs and that the remainder of the loan is used to fund costs such as rent and utilities. The amount could be lowered if owners cut wages or laid-off employees. 

Borrowers should first focus on payroll expenses, as PPP loans can be forgiven based solely on that. The SBA and Treasury Department have three different application forms. 

The full forgiveness application and the EZ application both involve calculating the borrower’s forgiveness amount, accessing how closely you followed program guidelines and submitting supporting documentation as needed. Only certain borrowers are eligible to complete the EZ application, such as those who are self-employed or those who maintained wages and employee count at required levels.

Form 3508S, the third application, is for loans of $50,000 or less and will streamline “the PPP forgiveness process to provide financial and administrative relief,” the SBA said.

Visit our resources page to view each application and to determine which best suits you and your business. 

The Alliance to Save the American Dream is a non-profit organization dedicated to three core goals.

1. Develop an Ideas Factory to give small businesses and industries a centralized place to share innovative ideas that must be considered.

2. Build a unique Resources portal for small businesses to go to for answers or resources that address a wide range of issues or challenges.

3. Offer a new networking opportunity for small business owners to connect while also giving them a platform to share their own personal stories.

For more information, visit savetheamericandream.com. 

Restaurateurs: Fighting for Survival

October 9, 2020 - Alliance to Save the American Dream

Winter is coming and restaurant owners across the nation are bracing themselves for the cold months ahead. 

During citywide lockdowns, restaurants adapted quickly to save their businesses. From takeout to advertising delivery services, small business owners reinvented their business models. 

As restaurants slowly began to reopen, outdoor dining was essential. Governors reduced or prohibited indoor dining in the initial reopening plans and restaurant owners were forced to quickly adjust to the new rules. On Sept. 30, New York restaurants were permitted to reopen dining rooms at 25% capacity. 

“I just think people feel safest outdoors, and we are wanting to really be able to accommodate them,” Laura Garcia said in an interview with The Wall Street Journal. 

Garcia, the general manager of Ninetwentyfive based in Wayzata, Minn., said the restaurant is adding 7-foot-tall heated igloos and retractable shades to trap heat in order to stay in business throughout the winter months. 

The critical changes that businesses are making will be key to keeping their lights on.  For Kim Bartmann, owner of Tiny Diner based in Minneapolis, opting to close for the winter due to the costs exceeding predicted sales was her only choice. 

“Here in Minnesota you can only tough it out eating outside for so long,” she said in an interview with The Wall Street Journal. 

In a recent study, the National Restaurant Association predicts that an estimated 100,000 of the 1 million restaurants and bars will permanently shut their doors by the end of 2020. 

These devastating results do not highlight the investment that communities had been making throughout the years prior to the global pandemic. 

According to data compiled by the National Main Street Center from nearly 1,000 communities between 2015 and 2019, it was discovered that U.S. towns with populations of 25,000 or less invested more than $20 billion in public and private funds. This investment led to more than 28,000 new businesses and approximately 106,000 new full-time and 25,000 part-time jobs. 

Small businesses will continue to fight for their survival. One community at a time. 

The Alliance to Save the American Dream is a non-profit organization dedicated to three core goals.

1. Develop an Ideas Factory to give small businesses and industries a centralized place to share innovative ideas that must be considered.

2. Build a unique Resources portal for small businesses to go to for answers or resources that address a wide range of issues or challenges.

3. Offer a new networking opportunity for small business owners to connect while also giving them a platform to share their own personal stories.

For more information, visit savetheamericandream.com. 

Fighting for Representation

October 1, 2020 - Alliance to Save the American Dream

Small businesses wear many hats. They hold communities together, they power economies, they represent the true meaning of determination and most importantly: they represent the American dream. 

From San Francisco to Hartford, small businesses across the country faced immense challenges and immeasurable blows to their livelihoods when cities were forced to lockdown amid the Covid-19 pandemic. The nationwide shutdown highlighted the disconnect between elected officials and local business owners. 

“It’s getting harder and harder to hold on. (I’m) cautiously optimistic, I would say,” Karie Bennett, Atelier Studio and Salon owner and founder based in San Francisco, said in an interview with CBSN Bay Area. “We’ve had quite a lot of back and forth; that whiplash we’ve all been feeling (as) business owners.”

When state officials reconvened to launch a reopening plan, there was a voice left out of the conversation: small business owners. In Connecticut, Governor Ned Lamont announced a Reopen Connecticut Advisory Group in March that invited local health, business, workforce and education experts to consult with the Lamont administration. Those very conversations were used to inform his decisions on the reopening of the state. Everyday people were isolated as the decisions that impacted the future of their businesses were made. It is time that these individuals have the opportunity to join together as Americans and lead their communities once again, united in their shared enterprise. 

“Small businesses are the backbone of our communities and local economies. They have worked hard to reopen in a way that can keep their customers and staff safe. It would be nice to see that hard work reciprocated from Gov. Whitmer’s office,” Matt Hall, a member of the Michigan House of Representatives, said in an interview with mlive.com. 

In May, Facebook released a report following a survey that interviewed 86,000 small and medium-sized business owners, managers and employees for the World Bank and Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development’s data initiative. The report found that 45% of owners of business owners would rehire the same workers that were let go, while a third of closed businesses shared that they do not expect to reopen. 

There is no doubt that small businesses make some of the toughest decisions to adapt. They strategize and step up to each challenge that arrives at their door. Join us, as we work to recognize the rising stakes. We are eager to have your voice heard. 

The Alliance to Save the American Dream is a non-profit organization dedicated to three core goals.

1. Develop an Ideas Factory to give small businesses and industries a centralized place to share innovative ideas that must be considered.

2. Build a unique Resources portal for small businesses to go to for answers or resources that address a wide range of issues or challenges.

3. Offer a new networking opportunity for small business owners to connect while also giving them a platform to share their own personal stories.

For more information, visit savetheamericandream.com. 

The Power of Resources

September 26, 2020 - Alliance to Save the American Dream

Now more than ever, the small business community must rally to utilize resources and share useful tips as they navigate around the blockades that COVID-19 has put up. 

The Alliance to Save the American Dream continues to compile resources to help business owners and their employees maintain their physical and economic health during the pandemic. We recognize that your time is valuable and this is where we seek to guide you through the process of pinpointing resources specific to your needs. Our resource page will provide you with a platform to connect with agencies that are ready to help.

The days where resource planning was an utter nightmare are over. Our resources page will allow you to craft a plan to ensure that your time is being delegated efficiently and effectively. And this section (and our 2nd core goal) will only grow in the coming weeks and months and get better as we offer not only more resources but also content that dials into certain and critical fundamental essentials that nearly every small business owner may need. 

In 2019, the Small Business Administration reported that there were 30.7 million small businesses in the United States. These very businesses drive economic growth, create jobs in their respective communities and face countless challenges that they fight to overcome. When the U.S. became the new epicenter of the virus, over 70 percent of those small businesses shut down in March, according to a study conducted by Facebook. Owners across the country put every effort forward to stay afloat, but without clear guidance from states and websites that were difficult to navigate, some felt alone in their battle. 

So let us be the extra pair of hands you need. We are here to help. For more information, please visit our Resources page to access more information and the links to readily available partners, resources, and experts. 

The Alliance to Save the American Dream is a non-profit organization dedicated to three core goals.

1. Develop an Ideas Factory to give small businesses and industries a centralized place to share innovative ideas that must be considered.

2. Build a unique Resources portal for small businesses to go to for answers or resources that address a wide range of issues or challenges.

3. Offer a new networking opportunity for small business owners to connect while also giving them a platform to share their own personal stories.

For more information, visit savetheamericandream.com. 

NATIONAL SMALL BUSINESS WEEK AND BEYOND

September 24, 2020 - Alliance to Save the American Dream

It’s National Small Business Week.


America was founded by risk-takers. Men and women who identified the opportunity – to gain independence – and seized that opportunity for all it was worth. The cost was great but the reward is still savored.


Today, small business owners continue that tradition of seizing upon opportunity and becoming independent.


This week we celebrate all small business owners and their enterprises that have made America a leader in nearly every industry. And let us not forget that almost every large corporation once started small.


As part of this week’s purpose, small business owners are on Capitol Hill lobbying for more COVID-19 relief. At the Alliance to Save the American Dream, we have one main objective: To save our small businesses, the lifeblood of our economy.


Our team is committed to delivering ready to use Resources and Ideas that are best suited to weather not just COVID but any other crisis that is on the horizon. We are calling on all small businesses to join our growing membership so that we might unite as a collective voice for the sake of preserving our way of life in this land of the opportunity.

The Alliance to Save the American Dream is a non-profit organization dedicated to three core goals.

1. Develop an Ideas Factory to give small businesses and industries a centralized place to share innovative ideas that must be considered.

2. Build a unique Resources portal for small businesses to go to for answers or resources that address a wide range of issues or challenges.

3. Offer a new networking opportunity for small business owners to connect while also giving them a platform to share their own personal stories.

For more information, visit savetheamericandream.com. 

“If Our Businesses Fail, America Fails” – Small Businesses Call for Unity, Action in Powerful New Video

September 17, 2020 - Alliance to Save the American Dream

A growing coalition of small business owners calling themselves the Alliance to Save the American Dream (ASAD) has released a powerful new video detailing the financial and emotional toll they have faced as a result of the COVID-19 lockdowns. The video, set over solemn footage of empty, devastated businesses, is narrated by entrepreneurs who obeyed early lockdown guidelines, hoping to flatten the curve.  Even after doing all the right things, they now face financial ruin and the devastation of their dreams, which they’d spent decades or even lifetimes building.

“We don’t want people to die, but we also need to know how to survive,” says the video’s narration, as countless empty locations flash across the screen. The video ends with the most important and declarative point, “If our businesses fail, America fails.” 

The Alliance’s co-Founder and President, Victor Rogers, owner of a marketing and brand development business that aids in event promotion and creative in Northern Virginia notes, “we have to be part of finding solutions because we know our businesses and industries better than any politician or policy wonk.” 

These business owners hope that, by starting this new alliance, they can finally get some answers on how to survive these unprecedented times, answers they say are not forthcoming from a government they feel has largely abandoned them.

Virginia-based filmmaker, Colin Mason, co-Founder of the Alliance added, “I was appalled when I realized that, even though they’ve been talking big talk, the government wasn’t actually that concerned about the small businesses who were dropping like flies all around us. And all I could think of was a video, some way to amplify their voices and make sure they knew they weren’t alone.” 

Mason added, “Victor and I have been working together for clients’ digital brand awareness needs for over five years now so we were used to our mission-based focus and we just knew that this needed to be something more than just a video.”

“The unique thing about the Alliance to Save the American Dream is that we are not some Think Tank or policy experts. We just know the business mindset and communities we serve and we have a vested interest in keeping our doors open not just for our livelihoods but also for our economy and for the families of our employees. We realized that guidance is going to have to come from the one resource we still have: each other. Until now, there wasn’t a centralized place to do that,” Rogers noted.

Rogers also noted that “this isn’t the last pandemic and, again, we need to be part of the conversation.” Unity is the only thing that will solve these issues right now and the Alliance to Save the American Dream has the potential to be a big part of that solution.

The three main goals of the Alliance to Save the American Dream:

1. Develop an Ideas Factory to give businesses and industries a centralized place to share innovative ideas that must be considered to sustain business operations and then sharing those ideas within the conversation and for policy leaders; 

2. Build a unique Resources portal for small businesses to go to for answers or resources that address a wide range of issues or challenges;

3. Offer new networking opportunities for small business owners while also giving them a platform to share their own personal stories.

The Alliance to Save the American Dream’s mission statement and other details, including the video that started it all, can be found at www.savetheamericandream.com 

The Story of the Alliance – Part 1

September 16, 2020 - Alliance to Save the American Dream

This past spring, I lost $20,000 in one week. It was one of the worst weeks of my life.

I own a video production studio in the Northern Virginia area called Mirandum Pictures. We’re small, but we’ve spent the last 15 years making amazing commercials, music videos, short films and more. I’ve surrounded myself with a team of amazing people and we’ve gotten the chance to film in beautiful locations all over the world, and meet incredible people, some very famous, others not.

And then COVID-19 happened.

I’ve never seen anything like it before in my life. That first week alone, a documentary trip to Jordan was canceled 3 days before our flight was supposed to take off. Then another mini-documentary canceled. Neither had any choice: lockdowns meant that no one could travel or gather in groups to work.

And that was just during that one week.

The days that followed were like a nightmare: every morning brought a wave of new cancellations. Major organizations who had signed up for high-end gala videos suddenly found themselves without a gala to show them at. The studio we relied on to shoot commercials in was forced to close its doors to the public. Reliable clients suddenly didn’t know if they were going to survive a long lockdown, and they quickly slashed advertising budgets. Within days, our revenue stream flatlined. And there was literally nothing we could do about it.

If you own a small business, this is a familiar story.

As the weeks turned into months, the one thing became clear: I was surrounded by small businesses who were facing the struggle of their lives–and no one was listening to them.

The government wasn’t listening. There was some money for business loans, but it was not even remotely adequate and it was quickly snapped up by larger businesses with armies of accountants at their disposal. Most of my colleagues received nothing, or close to it.

The news wasn’t listening. News outlets focused on the pandemic itself, and that’s understandable. But as a result, small businesses were failing at a catastrophic rate, and very little attention was being given to them. Something deeply tragic was happening on a national level, and very few were watching.

I couldn’t sit by and watch that happen any longer. So I did the only thing I know how to do: I made a video.

I wanted to give those folks a voice. I didn’t know how far it would reach, but I knew it was important. With a very small crew that, for the most part consisted only of 2 people (myself and Jacob Schwartz, the director of photography who filmed this piece) we visited small business after small business, recording their words and filming them in their eerily empty locations. 

Many of them cried. Most said they were glad of what we were doing, just because they felt like their lives had been turned upside-down and nobody was listening.

But the video was missing something. We had captured the voices of so many small business owners, but what were they asking for? What did they think needed to happen next?

I didn’t have a good answer. But someone else did.

THE NEXT VIRUS IS COMING

September 8, 2020 - Alliance to Save the American Dream

Let’s face reality. Our world is full of threats. Some seen and some unseen.

Let’s accept another premise. COVID-19 is not the first dangerous virus and it will not be the last. 

Save the American Dream is based upon the very real thesis that in the next year, three years or 10 years, our world will experience yet another virus that has deadly consequences. 

Can America’s small businesses survive another shutdown? We suggest, no! 

It is therefore our responsibility, as small business owners, as those who have risked our lives and our fortunes to prepare for the next coming virus. We can leave nothing to politicians who have no vested interest in our businesses or, more importantly, in the care that we have for our employees. 

These are not just employees. These are families. Each employee has a family and it is through our ventures that these families gain financial opportunities. It is through our endeavors and small businesses that these employees can become consumers within our society. 

America was founded upon small business owners. Merchants. Farmers. Service providers. All risked for the sake of a better life and for the betterment of our society. 

Our small businesses cannot fail. It is therefore up to us to find the solutions that will keep our doors open and our customers coming back. Our small businesses not only depend upon this but our economy depends upon this.

We are here to help. It is our aim to provide a resource of help and hope for our small business community for the sake of saving their American Dream! 

Join us. Suggest our Resources section to anyone you know who is looking for this hope.

The Alliance to Save the American Dream is a non-profit organization dedicated to three core goals.

1. Develop an Ideas Factory to give small businesses and industries a centralized place to share innovative ideas that must be considered.

2. Build a unique Resources portal for small businesses to go to for answers or resources that address a wide range of issues or challenges.

3. Offer a new networking opportunity for small business owners to connect while also giving them a platform to share their own personal stories.

For more information, visit savetheamericandream.com. 

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