Oak Ridge Small Business Accelerator

Our mission is to demystify AI and provide affordable, accessible AI-powered solutions to help small businesses and startups grow and compete.

Accepting applications on August 1, 2024


Oak Ridge Small Business Digital Accelerator Program

Pro Bono Initiative – Limited Offer

Through collaborative creation, we help select small businesses establish an impactful digital presence – at no cost. Our customized web solutions equip driven local entrepreneurs ready to unlock the online world for growth.

This initiative thrives on mutual support between community businesses. We progress together when you progress. Join us to craft an impactful digital presence, accelerating your small business onward and upward.

Our pro bono offering signifies meaningful investment in promising locally rooted ventures, transcending the notion of conventional free services.  Through transparent collaboration guided by your vision, we crystallize promising ideas into tangible local success milestones.  We expect applicants to match our commitment through spirited collaboration, as we offer specialized digital skills fused with strategic guidance.

What kind of businesses are eligible?

We accept applications from locally-owned, small brick-and-mortar or online stores, restaurants, professional services and other independent ventures based in Oak Ridge Tennessee

What is the commitment needed from selected businesses?

If selected for the program, you commit to:

  • Dedicate 1+ hours monthly for check-ins, decisions and guidance
  • Promptly provide required assets and content
  • Give timely feedback on deliverables
  • Promote your finished website actively on online/offline channels
  • Remain engaged for performance reviews and ongoing optimization through the 1 year engagement

What does the program offer?

Our core web sevices bundle includes a custom-designed mobile-friendly website, optimized local SEO content, hassle-free managed hosting and maintenance for 1 year post go-live. Additionally, we provide end-to-end support across strategy, UX and creative aspects. Project requirements may vary, so our full suite of digital marketing solutions can be tapped into as required for selected ventures.

Applying for the Program

Program is offered on a first-come first-served basis to eligible businesses. To get started, please complete the application form below and provide your key details and responses in the digital form. The applications are evaluated on criteria like alignment with our community values, growth orientation, ability to commit time and resources. Applicants are then scheduled for a detailed discussion with our for final selection.


Accepting applications August 2024

Accelerator Features & Modules

The Accelerator Program boosts small businesses’ digital presence through a tailored journey of digital development. It covers strategic planning, launch, and post-launch activities, enhancing your brand, optimizing online reach, and engaging audiences. 

3 Accelerator Features

Collaboration Meetings

Collaborative meetings guide our design, production, and improvement cycles, ensuring a seamless, client-focused process at every step.

External Industry Research & Report

We’ll provide detailed industry and community research that provides invaluable insights, shaping tailored strategies to elevate your business’s market position.

Needs Assessment

Conducting a thorough assessment to understand your unique requirements, ensuring a tailored approach that aligns with your specific business needs.

Project Definition & Scope

Defining project scope and goals to ensure clear deliverables, aligning our efforts with your vision for precise and effective execution.

Contract Collaboration

Collaborating on a straightforward contract that outlines deliverables, ensuring mutual understanding of what’s provided and expected contributions.

Marketing Research & Strategy

Executing detailed market research to craft a custom marketing plan, focusing on strategies that resonate with your target audience and business goals.

Creative Brief Development

Developing an overarching creative brief that outlines design vision, messaging, and goals, providing a clear roadmap for the project’s creative direction.

Design Concept Drafting

Drafting initial website design concepts to visualize your ideas, creating a foundation for the site’s aesthetic and functional blueprint.

SEO/SEM Optimized Content Creation

Creating content optimized to boost local online visibility, ensuring your website ranks higher and reaches the right audience.

Design Finalization

Finalizing and approving the website design to ensure it meets your expectations and embodies your brand’s identity effectively and attractively.

Website Testing & Security Enhancement

Conducting rigorous testing and enhancing security measures to guarantee website functionality and protect against online threats and vulnerabilities.

Website Soft Launch

Executing a soft launch to test the website in a live environment, allowing us to fine-tune performance and user experience before the official launch.

Search Engine Indexing

Initiating the process to register your site with major search engines, enhancing its visibility and discoverability online. This step is crucial for ensuring your you’re connecting effectively with your target audience.

Optimize Google My Business

Optimizing your Google My Business listing to boost visibility and search ranking. This strategy focuses on enhancing local search presence, attracting more customers, and improving online credibility, directly contributing to your business’s growth and online reputation.

Official Website Launch

Launching your website officially, ensuring a seamless transition to a live, public platform. This step focuses on functionality, optimization, and audience engagement, reflecting your brand’s identity and strategic goals.

PR Strategy & Announcement

Strategically publicizing your website’s launch, employing targeted PR tactics to maximize exposure and audience reach. This approach is designed to create buzz and attract attention, effectively announcing your online presence.

Social Media Planning

Crafting a cohesive social media strategy to complement your website, ensuring consistent messaging and engagement across all platforms. This plan focuses on building a robust online presence, tailored to resonate with your audience and amplify your brand’s reach.

Social Media Content

Developing a detailed content calendar for social media, ensuring a consistent, strategic posting schedule. This tool helps in organizing themes, topics, and timing, aligning with marketing goals and audience engagement strategies.

Automate Customer Engagement

Integrating AI chatbots and email auto-responders for swift, consistent responses to routine inquiries, enhancing customer interaction and support efficiency. 

eCommerce Platform

Implementing a user-friendly, secure online ordering platform. This system enhances customer convenience, streamlines transactions, and supports your business’s growth and operational efficiency.

Email Marketing Strategy

Creating and executing strategic email marketing campaigns, focused on engaging customers with personalized content. This approach aims to boost conversions, build brand loyalty, and enhance overall communication effectiveness, aligning with your business’s marketing goals and customer relationship objectives.

Customer Engagement Tools

Implementing polls and quizzes to engage users, enhancing experience, and gathering feedback for improved personalization and customer relationship building.

Promotional Campaigns

Designing and implementing targeted promotional activities to boost brand visibility and engagement. This strategy aims to attract and retain customers, driving sales and enhancing brand recognition in a competitive market.

Content Modification

Regularly updating and refining website content to keep it fresh, relevant, and engaging, ensuring it aligns with evolving business goals and audience needs.

Feedback Integration

Incorporating feedback to refine the website, and implementing improvements based on user suggestions and analytics for an enhanced online experience.

Iterative Website Improvement

Continuously enhancing the website through iterative improvements, adapting to changing needs and trends to keep the site dynamic and effective.

Data Backup Systems

Implementing reliable backup solutions to safeguard data, ensuring its security and accessibility in any scenario.

1 Year Managed Web Hosting

Providing a year of top-tier, fully managed VPS hosting with Vultr, handling all aspects for optimal performance and reliability.

Pro Bono Client Questionnaire

If you’re prepared to take this step and bring dedication, enthusiasm, and a collaborative spirit, we invite you to complete our pro bono client application.

Open July 1st/24

AI is our motor

We recognize the unwavering dedication local business owners invest in both their companies and communities. Our affordable AI solutions empower you to channel your passion into your craft while providing heightened customer engagement, data-driven insights, and agile responses to evolving customer needs.

AI is our motor

We recognize the unwavering dedication local business owners invest in both their companies and communities. Our affordable AI solutions empower you to channel your passion into your craft while providing heightened customer engagement, data-driven insights, and agile responses to evolving customer needs.