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Blog // Connect Iowa

Going Social on Small Business Saturday

By Eric Frederick

Since 2010, local businesses have urged customers to “shop small” on the Saturday after Thanksgiving and the event continues to grow, thanks in large part to an active annual social media campaign. American Express launched Small Business Saturday in 2010 with a viral multi-media campaign highlighting rare finds at small stores. In 2011, the U.S. government officially supported Small Business Saturday and it is now the largest shopping holiday in support of small business. Every year the movement grows and an increasing number of businesses utilize the buzz online to reach out to new and existing customers. On Small Business Saturday, during...

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Building E-Commerce in Wright County, IA

By Eric Frederick

E-commerce helps large businesses build revenue, even while traditional storefronts would be closed, and allows customers to research products and find exactly what they’re looking for at their convenience. Small and mid-sized businesses are also looking at online shopping as a way to make more products available and advertise to a larger customer base. Access to reliable broadband connections and awareness of e-commerce functionality are key components to developing an online shopping network. Connected Nation and its state-based programs are helping smaller communities and their businesses get online and increase revenue while they sleep....

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Iowa Whitepaper

By Phillip Brown

As part of its work with communities across Iowa in the Connected Community Engagement Program, Connect Iowa is often asked about policies and laws at a state or local level that could be implemented, eliminated, modified, or improved in order to encourage broadband network access, broadband adoption, or broadband use. It’s important for state and local governments to actively explore how state and local regulations impact broadband. While many broadband policy discussions occur at a federal level within Congress or agencies like the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) or National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA...

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USDA Grant Funds Rural Telemedicine and E-Learning

By Eric Frederick

 The USDA is making $19 million available to rural areas seeking to expand distance learning opportunities and telemedicine. The Distance Learning and Telemedicine (DLT) grant program gives schools, government groups, non-profits, businesses, and others the opportunity to obtain equipment and instruction that can benefit local students, teachers, doctors, and, most importantly, the community.  Nearly one fifth of America’s population resides in rural areas, as classified by the U.S. Census Bureau. These nearly 59.5 million people are spread over more than 90% of the nation’s land area, making it exceedingly difficult to concentrate...

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