Free business seminars slated for December

Surry Community College’s Small Business Center will be holding free seminars and workshops in December at various locations in Surry and Yadkin counties.

How to Advertise on a Small Budget will be the topic of a seminar on Tuesday, Dec. 6 from 7:30 to 9:30 a.m. at the Fairfield Inn & Suites, 628 CC Camp Road/268 Bypass, Elkin. Mark Twain once said, “Many a small thing has been made large by the right kind of advertising.”

Advertising can be expensive and in today’s economy, many small businesses cut their marketing budget due to financial concern. However, it is even more important to keep your business brand in the forefront during these times. In the economy we are faced with today, customers have less money to spend, which means when they are ready to buy, you want your brand to be at the top of their list. Speaker Jason Dunlap will show you 10 marketing strategies that can help promote your business brand on a shoestring budget.

How to Start a Home-Based Business will be the subject of a workshop on Tuesday, Dec. 6 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at The Pilot Center, 612 E. Main St., Pilot Mountain. Many people find working at home the ideal arrangement and decide to set up small businesses in their homes. Learn the requirements for getting started with a home-based business, including finding your niche, legal requirements, and developing a business plan. Melissa Terrell will be the speaker.

Business Structure will be discussed in a workshop on Tuesday, Dec. 6 from 6 to 8 p.m. at The Yadkin Center, 1001 College Dr., Yadkinville. Topics of discussion include the differences between a sole proprietor, partnership and corporation and record keeping. Participants will also get an overview of their tax responsibilities as a small business. The speaker will be Robert Wall.

Communicating the Value of Your Brand Through Marketing will be discussed in a workshop on Thursday, Dec. 8 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Fairfield Inn in Elkin. In this seminar, speaker Brittany Russell will explain the importance of branding not only for consumer markets, but also for small business markets. No matter a company’s size, age or branch, a brand always leaves the audience with an expectation of the company. Your brand communicates what the company creates, promises and fulfills for its market for its customers and potential customers, especially new and small businesses.

Independent Contractor or Employee will be the subject of a seminar on Tuesday, Dec. 13 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Center for Public Safety, 1220 State St., Mount Airy. One of the most important questions for a small business owner is whether to hire employees or independent contractors for your business.

Speaker Robert Wall will define an independent contractor and an employee and explain the importance of knowing the difference between the two. Participants will leave with an understanding of what is required when hiring an independent contractor or an employee as it relates to federal taxes; a message for all Schedule C filers that will further educate participants on their tax responsibilities is also included.

Tax Implications for Starting a Small Business will be discussed in a workshop on Wednesday, Dec. 14 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Center for Public Safety in Mount Airy. Participants will become familiar with NC tax laws related to businesses and the responsibilities of a business owner. The seminar will cover the basics of tax compliance, registering your business, employee tax withholding, and sales and use tax requirements. Information will be provided for businesses that have fallen behind on sales and use, withholding and other trust taxes. The speaker will be Karen Bargsley.

The Greater Mount Airy Chamber of Commerce is the sponsor for seminars held in Mount Airy and Pilot Mountain. The Yadkin County Chamber of Commerce is sponsoring the seminars held in Yadkin County. The Yadkin Valley Chamber of Commerce is sponsoring the seminars held in Elkin and Dobson.

To register for any of these seminars or to view a complete listing of the upcoming Small Business Center offerings in Surry and Yadkin counties, visit Anyone in need of information about confidential, one-on-one counseling and resource referrals may contact Dale Badgett at or call (336) 386-3685. You can follow the Small Business Center on Facebook @surrysbc.