New program offers classes for area businesses

Farragut West Knox Chamber of Commerce is partnering up with Small Business Development Center of Tennessee to offer classes to business owners in Knox County.

One such class was a “Write Your Marketing Plan,” which was offered through the FWKCC Partnership Program, in Farragut Town Hall Thursday, Oct. 10.

Chad Rogers and Victory Harbin, owners of The Social Brand, a Chamber member, provided guidance on how a marketing plan can be developed.

Julie Blaylock, FWKCC president/CEO, said businesses could expect more such classes through its partnership with SBDC Tennessee.

“We have partnered with the SBDC for quite a few years,” she said. “This originally started well before I started with the Chamber in 2011.

“We always marketed and advertised its free business counseling services to members,” Blaylock added. “We would loan their business advisor, Laura Overstreet, the space of our conference room one day a week so she could come and counsel Farragut clients on site in our office for their convenience.

“So, we’ve always had a good back-and-forth partnership of sharing information and resources. The SBDC does these class series in various locations in the area. ... We were always looking for a way and a space to do them in Farragut. ... We were finally able to secure space in the Community Classroom in Town Hall.”

The plan is for the two groups to co-sponsor the classes — and make more businesses, especially Chamber members, aware of “these resources that are 100 percent free, which is huge for small businesses,” Blaylock said.

Blaylock said SBDC would coordinate and vet the instructors/s/speakers of the classes.

“(SBDC has its) own rules and requirements for what kind of information needs to be shared,” she added. “Not just anybody can go and teach these classes. (The class) really has to be something of impact and value.”