Transcript for Small businesses get creative to survive during pandemic
Welcome back to "Gma3" been and it's cyber Monday. Coming off the biggest shopping weekend of the year, it's estimated that today is slated to become the largest digital sales date in U.S. History with spending reaching $10.8 billion. Offering a big sign of hope for small business owners who are beginning to adapt and form new companies during a year of economic hardships. Rebecca Jarvis has more. Today, I want to give five tips to date while distancing. Reporter: This combat veteran who spent nine years serving in the army, built her career by helping her clients find true love. You have to know yourself and what you want, right? Reporter: But when covid-19 hit, like so many others she saw an opportunity. Fter everything that had been happening, including the pandemic, the death of George Floyd, I thought, okay, what can I do? And I wanted to create and build strong families. I decided to start the broom list, which is the first and only matchmaking agency dedicated to bringing successful black professionals together. Reporter: Her goal, to create a company that would serve her customers during the pandemic and beyond it, and she's not alone. Americans are launching new businesses at the fastest rate in more than a decade with business applications already up over 26% compared to this time last year. Even those already running businesses or nonprofits have had to re-imagine how it's done. I've done like everything from C -- Reporter: The co-founder of the Chicago nonprofit the honeycomb project, turning the obstacles into opportunity. By making more of her offerings digital. Actually it enabled USO reach so many more families. Think about your core mission and translate that into a virtual environment. So for us that was volunteering in person and really making opportunities that people could do from home, right, that we're still in the same spirit. Reporter: But where to ev begin? She started by trading her skills as currency. I would coach friends for free in order to get them to help with my website and things like that. Reporter: Next, she focused on her network. Really make sure that you're making it personal in that you're connecting with the audience Tu're trying to Reporter: She made a commitment to stay disciplined. I try to do the same things every day at the same times, really keeping a schedule that's really helped me out. Reporter: Christina says no matter where you are in your startup journey be ready to adjust. We try to be responsive and create programs that really are of the moment. I think being open and flexible is so important during this time. Anrebecca joins us now. Those with definitely some inspirational stories there, Rebecca, but it's got to be scary thing, starting a business in the middle of a pandemic. Why do you believe they were able to do that successfully? Reporter: Well, and it's scary, Amy, no matter what time of year, what time it is, it's a hard, hard thing to start a business. Many are starting these entrepreneurial activities today because of the necessity, with layoffs and furloughs, a number of moms who are now doing child care from home and can't manage having a professional job that they have to go to every day. There's the necessity of it but keep in mind that some of the biggest companies of our time were started in moments of distress. General motors, burger king, Uber, the list goes on and on. What happens in times of economic distress is that things get less expensive, you might be able to hire some temporary help, you heard from Tenesha she was able to trade her services to help build out her website. Rebecca, we saw small business Saturday, people trying to help out small businesses, neighborhood shops if you will, but what can we do if we want to continue to support our communities and continue to support those small businesses through the season? T.J. It's so important, I know you're committed to this, Amy, Dr. Jen, us we want to support small businesses, they're really some of the hardest hit right now in the pandemic. But American Express did an entire shop small impact survey, they found 78% of small businesses said that some positive feedback on social media can be the difference between no business and some really great business, so comment online, make it a post a on social media when you have a good experience, American Express has on their website an entire list of small businesses, if you want to find out who's in your community and, finally, if you're buying something from a small business and you need to return it, ask for a store credit instead, that way you're not taking money out of their pocket that they already think they got. You can also buy gift cards for example if you'd like to shop small but you're not going to restaurants right now, consider buying a gift card right now, that will help them through the winter months that will be the hardest because of the pandemic. Those are incredible tips, Rebecca. Incredible job doing all of that in the middle of a downpour here in New York City. Get inside now. Stay dry. Coming up next here on
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