Main Street Digital Training & Grant Program

As part of the Tustin Cares program, the City of Tustin has partnered with Orange County/Inland Empire Small Business Development Center (SBDC) to offer a virtual six-week Main Street Digital Training and Grant Program, which will provide training and funding to thirty (30) small brick and mortar retail businesses needing financial assistance to increase their revenue due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. All eligible retail businesses are invited to apply to participate in the online learning program and receive a grant to assist in applying the practical skills learned in the program to be used for paid advertising on social media.

All eligible retail businesses that have an active Tustin business license since January 1, 2021, and have at least two (2) employees – which may also include the owner, and a maximum of twenty-five (25) employees (full or full-time equivalent combination) may be eligible to receive a digital marketing grant of five hundred dollars ($500). The grant must be used for a paid advertising campaign.

Each business owner will complete three sessions (1 - 2 hours a session-once a week) on building a digital presence. At the end of three weeks, each business owner will have the opportunity to receive a grant to assist them in their online paid advertising promotion. In weeks 4 - 6, the business owner will deepen their understanding of how to drive traffic through Social Media advertising and develop their advertising campaign with their SBDC consultant. 

The 6-week online training sessions are scheduled for once a week from May 17 to June 21, 2022.

Businesses which have previously received alternative sources of funding such as the City of Tustin Small Business Emergency Grant, the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) or Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Loan are eligible to apply. The program is based on the availability of funds, program guidelines and submission of all required information and supporting documentation.

The City’s Economic Development Department will be responsible for oversight of the Tustin Main Street Digital Grant Program and disbursement of funds will take place through the City’s Finance Department. The City's Program Partner, the SBDC will be responsible for program administration, marketing, application processing, underwriting, training and for the review and approval of financial and business documentation for disbursement approval.  City staff is obligated to fulfill the terms and conditions of the funds as established by the City Council, these program guidelines, and Federal, State, and local rules and regulations.

GRANT APPLICATION

The Digital Grant application is NOW CLOSED.

GRANT GUIDELINES

The Tustin Main Street Digital Grant guidelines are available for review and can be downloaded by clicking here.


digital training program description

Step 1: Building a Digital Presence

  • Week 1 - All about Google
  • Week 2 - Reaching my Audience through Facebook and Instagram
  • Week 3 - My First Facebook/Instagram Post
  • Week 4 - The Right Channel for My Business

Step 2: Understanding How to Drive Traffic through Paid/Non-Paid Social Media Advertising

  • Week 5 - Advertising on Social Media
  • Week 6 - Setting up the Facebook/Instagram Campaign

Wrap-up: Utilizing Grant for Paid Digital/Online Advertising - Measuring and Tracking

eligibility & How to Apply

To be eligible to apply for the Tustin Main Street Digital Grant Program, a business must meet certain criteria that has been established by the City of Tustin and the guidelines set forth by the U.S. Department of Treasury for utilizing American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds.

The Tustin Main Street Digital Grant Program guidelines are available for review and can be downloaded by clicking here.  

The digital grant application will be available online only at 9:00 am on Monday, April 25, 2022. Applicants may apply for the grant program online by accessing the application portal.

GRANT APPLICATION

THE APPLICATION PERIOD HAS CLOSED.
(NO LATE APPLICATIONS WILL BE ACCEPTED)

Applications must be submitted online and will be accepted from Monday, April 25 to Wednesday, May 4. The application period will close promptly at 6:00 pm on May 4.  

Lottery

The City of Tustin is expecting the Main Street Digital Grant Program to have an overwhelming number of applications. If the number of applications far exceeds the amount of funding that is available for disbursement, the City will implement a lottery system for all eligible small businesses. Once applications and eligibility have been approved, they will be assigned a number and entered into a lottery. Potential program participants will be contacted by email, phone and/or letter starting May 11, 2022. 

Contact Information 

For additional information regarding the Tustin Main Street Digital Grant Program, please contact the following:

City of Tustin 
Economic Development Department

300 Centennial Way
Tustin, CA 92780
(714) 573- 3117
TustinEconDevDept@tustinca.org

For questions about the guidelines and application or assistance in completing the application and to set up a one-on-one consultation (at no cost), please contact the SBDC at:

Manal Richa, Director
Small Business Development Center - CSUF
15375 Barranca Parkway, Suite A111
Irvine, CA 92618
(657) 256-3874 office
Manal.Richa@ociesbdc.com