Comcast Corporation recently announced the first round of Comcast RISE award recipients. More than 700 Black-owned businesses will receive consulting, media, and creative production services from Effectv, the advertising sales division of Comcast Cable, or technology upgrades from Comcast Business, based on the specific needs. This includes 33 Black-owned small businesses in New Jersey, from restaurants and salons to professional services and retail shops. In addition, 3,300 small businesses have already signed up to receive the Comcast RISE monthly newsletter, which will offer free marketing insights and resources.
The first phase of Comcast RISE, which stands for “Representation, Investment, Strength and Empowerment,” focused on U.S. Black-owned, small businesses, those hit hardest by the pandemic according to a recent study from the National Bureau of Economic Research. The next phase has opened up eligibility so that Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC)-owned, small businesses can all apply.
“The start of the pandemic was a scary time for business owners like me. I wasn’t sure what would happen and I didn’t know what to do at first. I began to look for grants and support to help navigate this new territory and keep my business afloat. That’s when I heard about RISE,” said Ashley Taylor of Voorhees-based performing arts center CreativeMotion. “I’m already seeing the benefits of the technology makeover provided by RISE. Now, I have faster internet that allows me to live stream classes, including the free community classes I started offering on Facebook Live during the pandemic. I’ll also be receiving iPads which will allow me to complete registration forms digitally and cut down on a lot of paperwork. I’m so grateful for the support the program has provided me.”
“At a time when so many small businesses across the state are struggling, it is humbling to be a part of an organization that is helping to give back to those most affected by the pandemic,” said Michael Louden, regional vice president for Comcast Business. “It’s been powerful to connect with the selected business owners and hear their stories. They have so much perseverance and resilience as they continue to grow their businesses and look for opportunities to make an impact on their local communities. I’m looking forward to continuing the program’s momentum and being able to offer further support to the BIPOC community.”
Comcast RISE brings together two of the company’s brands —Comcast Business and Effectv, both with expertise in the small business space — to empower business owners with the expertise and resources needed to navigate the economic effects of the pandemic. Comcast RISE consists of the following main components:
- A media and technology resources program: This pillar combines Effectv’s renowned media platform and marketing expertise, its award-winning creative agency, Mnemonic, and state-of-the-art technical support from Comcast Business to help small businesses foster and elevate growth. Recipients will receive help with their marketing, media campaigns and creation of 30-second commercials, as well as equipment and technology upgrades, including:
- Consulting: Advertising and marketing consultations with local Effectv marketing, research and creative teams to gain insights on how to grow your business.
- Media: A linear TV media campaign to run over a 90-day period.
- Creative Production: Turnkey :30 TV commercial production for their businesses.
- Technology Makeovers: Computer equipment and Internet, Voice and Cybersecurity services for up to a 12-month period. (Taxes and other fees may still apply for tech makeover services.)
- Business resources to help with curated content: Comcast has launched the Comcast RISE destination complete with aggregated small business news, tips, insights and more on the X1 platform. The destination is designed to help businesses grow by empowering them through education, inspiration and entertainment. Just say “Comcast RISE” into the X1 voice remote.
- Grants: In early 2021, Comcast will be awarding grants of up to $10,000 each for U.S.-based small and diverse businesses that have been in operations for three to five years.