As you read this issue of the Sumter News-Sun, you will notice far fewer event-related articles and more informational items related to dealing with the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Our goal is to provide readers useful information to help in the coming days and weeks.
For the latest updates on this emerging public health threat, Sumter News-Sun encourages readers to visit the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus. In addition, local information can be obtained through the Lake County Citizen Information Line. Residents can call 352-742-4830 Monday through Friday 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. with any coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) questions or concerns. Florida Department of Health (FDOH) is available at www.floridahealth.gov or 866-779-6121. The FDOH Call Center is available 24 hours per day. Inquiries may also be emailed to COVIDfirstname.lastname@example.org.
Please follow guidance to keep yourself, your families and your community safe. We will get through this together, although we will be practicing social distance protocol, of course. Be safe, everyone!
A Letter from Our CEO
Over the last few weeks, the public has rightfully grown increasingly concerned about COVID-19, or novel coronavirus. Store shelves are depleted of products such as toilet paper, hand sanitizer, bleach, alcohol and hand wipes. Schools are closed, stores are reducing hours of operation, offices are urging employees to work from home, and businesses that rely on street traffic are seeing their sales take a hit.
If you’re a business owner and you’ve noticed a drop in customers, you’re not alone. According to the NFIB Research Center, nearly one-quarter of small business owners say the outbreak is negatively impacting their businesses.
As we navigate through this rapidly changing situation, there are ways to stay connected and keep your business above water. Here are a few suggestions for businesses looking to stay engaged with their customers, even those who are self-quarantined or avoiding public places.
- Let customers know what you’re doing to prevent the spread of COVID-19 via email or other communications and let the community know you are still open for business. One way to do that is by taking advantage of D-R Media’s free listings of businesses still open and actively serving the public. D-R Media has committed up to $1 million financial support to help local businesses combat the effect of coronavirus by offering a free ad to any business owner that wants to send a message out to the community.
- Offer online deals through display advertising.
- Create awareness about specific services and products.
- Place a print ad to tell your story to the community.
No one knows the longevity of this virus. It may last weeks, or months. Regardless, we will all need to learn a better way of doing business.
D-R Media, the parent company of the Triangle News Leader, Clermont News Leader, Sumter News-Sun, Four Corners News Sun, Polk News Sun and the Winter Haven Sun, is in this situation with all of the local businesses in Lake, Polk and Sumter counties. We are here to do what we can to keep everyone going. Our sales reps are available to stop by. We’ll just make sure to practice the 6-foot distance when talking face to face. If you would prefer, your rep will be available via phone, email or video chat.
Contact us for more information about how we can help.
CEO, D-R Media