Cherokee Office of Economic Development · Cherokee by Choice.

Coronavirus: Stories of How Entrepreneurs in Cherokee County, GA are Adapting, Part 7

March 22, 2020

1. How has the COVID-19 situation impacted your business recently?

As a company that specializes in working with other small business owners, we’ve felt the crunch almost immediately with clients who have reached out to pause or terminate their contracts. We understand that for many, in these first few days, they’ve had to make the difficult choices to stop paying their vendors in an effort to focus on their other costs, and we’re making the same choices ourselves — where can we look for resources that are free or more cost-effective in the interim?

2. How have you and your business adapted to the situation?

We are changing up our offerings to include choices for small businesses who still recognize the importance for SEO and digital marketing services, but allowing them to make choices based on their own needs (and our recommendations, based on what fits their business model best).

We are changing up our offerings to include choices for small businesses who still recognize the importance for SEO and digital marketing services, but allowing them to make choices based on their own needs.

Like us, our clients are small businesses, too. There are a lot of unknowns right now, and chief among them is how long this might last. For our current and future clients who may not be able to commit to a monthly service right now, we’re adding some new one-time services, including optimizing Google My Business pages and updating and improving existing SEO.

We’re also looking at the possibility of putting together an online course to share some digital marketing best practices with small business owners looking to take advantage of this downtime to learn a little more.

3. How have you prepared and led your team/employees?

As a company, we’re a little different from other digital marketing agencies because the tenets of our business model are integrityempathy, and candor, and we focus on these things both with our relationships with clients and the relationships with our team. We know that each person on our team is their own person, with their own needs, and we’re doing our best to be communicative with everyone while also providing resources and suggestions on how to stay focused on the best interests of their clients.

4. What new things/perspectives (or old ones reinforced) have you learned about yourself, your business, and/or your community?

To continue to practice vulnerability, especially in times of uncertainty. Vulnerability leads to true connection, something we’re all desperately searching for right now during this time of social distancing. Taking risks, whether it’s sharing a little more deeply, or making a shift and creating a new business offering, these changes help a person grow. I believe fully that the more authentic you are with people, the more likely they are to advocate for you (and your business) in the future.

…continue to practice vulnerability, especially in times of uncertainty. Vulnerability leads to true connection, something we’re all desperately searching for right now during this time of social distancing.

5. How have you stayed focused and positive?

We’re all about finding the positive side. This is a good opportunity for small businesses to take a step back and focus on their online presence, so we plan to spend a little more time building new websites. We’re adapting and adding new ways to help small businesses improve their digital experience at a time when it’s harder to physically serve customers.

6. What are some encouraging thoughts or stories you have heard that have kept you grounded?

Watching small business owners rally together has been an amazing thing to see. This circumstance has impacted everyone, no matter the size, age, or stability of their business. This sense of equality, because we are all impacted by circumstances beyond anyone’s control, has fostered camaraderie in a new way. Business owners across all industries are joining together to form an alliance, sharing each others’ needs, and sharing positivity throughout our wonderful community.

Business owners across all industries are joining together to form an alliance, sharing each other’s needs, and sharing positivity throughout our wonderful community.


To learn more about Atlanta SEO Pro and Ashley and James’ work, visit  or follow them on social media and right here on Medium: Ashley Velez and James Ball. *Join their LIVE Marketing Q&A today, Monday, March 23rd at 1:00 pm via their Zoom call. Get details for joining that Zoom call here: .

Stay tuned tomorrow, Tuesday, March 24, 2020, for our eighth story and entrepreneur as it continues into week 2. We hope you are inspired by these stories and motivated to stay in the game to support them together.


Have ideas, questions or stories? Reach out to us at cherokeega.org or emailing us directly at info@cherokeega.org.