Media Release

Deadline for Digital Marketing Grant Extended

DEADLINE FOR DIGITAL MARKETING GRANT EXTENDED
Small businesses can access $2,500 Digital Transformation Grant until November 30

Kingston, ON, October 25, 2021 – Kingston Economic Development's Digital Street Squad is reminding small businesses in Kingston and Frontenac County to apply for the $2,500 Digital Transformation Grant as soon as possible. The deadline to apply for the grant is November 30. 

The Digital Transformation Grant from Digital Main Street has helped hundreds of Kingston area businesses establish or expand their digital presence with new or updated websites, stronger social media presence, ecommerce stores, and point of sale systems.

“Our Digital Street Squad has been contacting hundreds of eligible businesses with in-person visits, emails, and phone calls to promote this grant,” says Chris Morris, senior digital business advisor at Kingston Economic Development. “It’s a great grant and a big opportunity for local businesses. With the deadline fast approaching, we don’t want to anyone to miss out.”

The renewed investment of $10 million for the Digital Main Street program from Ontario’s Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade (MEDJCT) will help fund Digital Main Street, including the Ontario Grants Program, assisting small brick-and-mortar small businesses take advantage of the power of online marketing, sales, and back-office operations. 

A major change to the Digital Transformation Grant from previous years is the new location criteria. For the Digital Main Street 3.0 program, small businesses no longer need to be part of a zoned main street area to qualify, opening up the grant to thousands of additional businesses across the province.

“The importance of digital commerce in order for small businesses to survive and now remain competitive was highlighted and accelerated by the pandemic. Local business owners have worked hard to adapt but there is still work to be done to ensure they all have an opportunity to establish a strong online strategy and presence,” says Mayor Paterson. "I’m thrilled to see this funding continue. It will help small businesses build out their digital tools and equip them with the skills and resources they need to compete in an e-commerce environment.”

Digital Service Squads are fundamental to Digital Main Street’s design and success, with trained specialists who meet with small businesses, at no cost, to help them improve their online presence. The squads assist with a number of activities, including developing a Google My Business profile, enhancing their social media presence and providing support for basic website and e-commerce set-up.  Squads will also assist qualified small businesses through the application process for a $2,500 Digital Transformation Grant, which includes an online assessment, online training modules and the development of a Digital Transformation Plan (DTP). 

Digital Service Squad members will assist small businesses in areas including developing a Google My Business profile, enhancing their social media presence, and providing support for a basic website and e-commerce setup. Additionally, they will help eligible small businesses with a physical storefront and under 50 employees to apply for the $2,500 Digital Transformation Grant administered through the Ontario Business Improvement Area Association (OBIAA), which can be used towards new websites, software and hardware.

The deadline to apply for a Digital Transformation Grant is November 30, 2021. Business owners are encouraged to contact Kingston Economic Development to set up a meeting with a Digital Service Squad Member – KingstonEcDev.com/GoDigital


Media Contact:
Nour Mazloum
Communications & Events Officer
Kingston Economic Development Corporation
613-329-9270
[email protected]

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About Kingston Economic Development Corporation               
Kingston Economic Development Corporation is focused on building a strong community and supporting Kingston’s thriving economy. Its mission is to provide dynamic and collaborative leadership by leveraging Kingston's unique assets to create jobs and investments in order to sustain, grow, and transform Kingston's economy to meet the needs of the 21st century.

About OBIAA
OBIAA is the network that represents unique and vibrant BIAs across Ontario. The Association supports and advocates on behalf of its members through the building and nurturing of strong relationships and partnerships. OBIAA is a leader in the development and sharing of information, tools, resources and best practices, and is the ONE voice on common issues.

About Digital Main Street
Digital Main Street is an innovative program designed to help main street small businesses achieve digital transformation. The program is built around an online learning platform, structured training programs, grants and Digital Service Squads teams of street-level experts that help main street small businesses manage and grow their operations through technology adoption. The program was originally created in 2016 by the Toronto Association of BIAs (TABIA) and a group of strategic partners including Google, MasterCard, Microsoft, and Shopify. For more information, please visit digitalmainstreet.ca.