Open For Business is giving away professional video content to help small businesses survive the pandemic

CMD, a full-service creative agency based in Portland, has kicked off a pro bono program to help companies spread their message with professional videos.
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Open For Business connects small companies with professional content creators to make promotional videos for free.

Open For Business connects small companies with professional content creators to make promotional videos for free.

If you're a small business owner struggling to get your message out to customers right now, take note. The creative agency CMD, based in Portland, has instituted a new program called Open For Business that pairs professional content makers—videographers, producers, animators, and more—with companies urgently in need of messaging.

The program is completely free, with all content creators working on a volunteer basis. The program focuses on businesses in the retail and service sectors with less than $1.5 million annual revenue and fewer than 25 employees. 

"The idea is to promote your brand or retail location to say, 'Hey, we’re open, come in. We may not be open in the same way we were before, but we’re still impacting the community and we would love your help," said Darren Rankin, president of CMD. 

The video spots—which can take the form of commercials, vignettes, or anything else that's helpful—are 30 to 60 seconds long. Qualifying companies that apply through the website are typically approved within a day.

"People want to get their messages out right now. They just don’t know how, or where to turn, or if they can afford something like that," Rankin said. "A free video like this really can make a difference for someone."

Check out the spot below, created for a market called Portland Mercado.

To apply, visit WeAreOpenForBusiness.com and sign up. You'll have to describe your brand and what you're looking for in a video spot. Or, if you're a professional, you can also log onto the site and volunteer your services.

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A snap of all the attendees at POW's volunteer training event in September 2019. Hosted by Maine Beer Company.

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