Let’s face it, it has been a rough first quarter of the year since COVID-19 has entered into all our lives and flipped our lives upside down. While the debate goes on whether COVID-19 is termed as a black or white swan event, one thing for certain is the economic impact that will last for a long period of time. A lot has changed since and there are new opportunities that have arisen when it comes to digital marketing.
Digital Marketing, COVID-19 & Budget 2020
Against the global backdrop of the COVID-19 outbreak, the Singapore Government unveiled the Budget 2020 on 18 February 2020. Subsequently, the Resilience Budget and Solidarity Budget were released on 26 March 2020 and 6 April 2020 to help complement Budget 2020 to address the now rapidly evolving pandemic and negate the impact on Singapore’s economy and society. A total of $160 billion Singapore Dollars have been deployed to help Singaporeans tide through this storm together. Along with the implementation of the stay-home measures, digital marketing and E-commerce efforts are starting to gain importance for business. Bernard Marr, a noted strategist, have noted that there is a shift towards a reliance on digital strategies in businesses. Thus, there is a need for all businesses to consider switching to digital channels today.
As long as businesses approach the shift to digital marketing strategically, there’s no reason why it should just serve as an emergency fill-in, but could carry on providing long-term value when the world eventually gets back to normal.
– Bernard Marr
In this post, we have identified grants that can be used for digital marketing purposes. They are designed to serve specific business functions and purposes to help you keep afloat in this crisis. Here are the 6 Singapore Grants that you can use for your digital marketing efforts today:
- Enterprise Development Grant (EDG)
- Productivity Solutions Grant (PSG)
- Multichannel E-commerce Platform (MEP)
- SkillsFuture for Individuals
- SkillsFuture Enterprise Credit (SFEC)
- Union Training Assitance Programme (UTAP)
1. Enterprise Development Grant (EDG)
What is it? A general catch-all grant to support enterprises in their Core Capabilities, Innovation & Productivity, Market Access.
How can I benefit? EDG funds up to 90% for COVID-affected industries and up to 80% for other industries.
How do I qualify? Business must be registered in Singapore, have a minimum 30% local shareholding and be in a financially capable to start and complete the project.
What is the validity of the grant? April 2020 to 31 March 2023.
2. Productivity Solutions Grant (PSG)
What is it? Support companies in adopting IT solutions and equipment to enhance business processes in:
- vertical-specific software solutions (e.g. retail, food, logistics, precision engineering, construction, etc.)
- horizontal-specific software solutions (e.g. customer management, analytics, financial management, etc.)
How can I benefit? Funding has been raised from 70% to 80% from 1 April 2020 to 31 December 2020; capped at $30,000 per entity per financial year.
How do I Qualify? Companies have to be registered and operating in Singapore. Purchase/Lease/Subscription of the IT solutions or equipment must be used in SG and a minimum of 30% local shareholding.
What is the validity of the grant? 1 April 2020 to 31 December 2020.
3. Multi-Channel E-commerce Platform (MEP)
What is it? Platform to help manufacturers, retailers or distributors of products to list and sell their products on multiple overseas e-marketplaces.
How can I benefit? This is a 1-time support of 70% of eligible program costs annually.
How do I Qualify? Business entities have to be:
- Registered/incorporated in Singapore.
- Possess min of 30% local shareholding.
- Have group annual turnover not exceeding $100 million per annum.
- Group employment not exceeding 200 employees.
- Preferably not have experience in exporting products overseas using digital channels.
4. Skillsfuture for Individuals
What is it? Subsidies for Individuals on top of existing government course subsidies to pay for skills-related courses.
How can I benefit? Singaporeans aged 25 and above will get an initial sum of $500 (no expiry) & an extra $500 top-up expiring at the end of 2025. Those who are aged 40 – 60 years will receive an additional $1000 top-up.
How do I Qualify? Only for Singaporeans aged 25 and above.
5. Skillsfuture for Enterprise Credit (SFEC)
What is it? Supports both Enterprise Transformation up to $7000 and Workplace Transformation (i.e. job redesign initiatives, training programs by SkillsFuture & WorkForce Singapore) up to $3000.
How can I benefit? One-Off $10,000 credit to cover up to 90% of out-of-pocket expenses on qualifying costs.
How do I Qualify? Choosing from a list of approved programmes here in order to enjoy subsidies.
6. Union Training Assistance Programme (UTAP)
What is it? Training benefits for NTUC members to further subsidise the cost of training to encourage more NTUC members to go for skills upgrading
How can I benefit? NTUC members enjoy 50% off unfunded course fee support for up to $250 annually for UTAP courses, on top of existing government subsidies.
How do I Qualify? Source for courses and training providers that are provided under UTAP here.
What is the validity of the grant? NTUC Members should apply for UTAP claim within 6 months after the course ends.
Let’s Get Through This Together
We understand that uncertainties are aplenty in this time period but Singaporean businesses do not need to think about closing down. We believe it is all about strategising in these difficult times and getting the right support from every avenue to help tide through this storm. If you are unsure of what are the next steps, we would recommend you to look for professional help in your digital marketing efforts and the type of grants you are eligible for.
Digital Influence Lab is the only government-appointed digital marketing agency that helps SME build their digital marketing capabilities. Our founder, Sharon Neo, has over 9 years of experience and have been working with different SMEs through the help of different grants available to offset the cost. Schedule a chat with us here and find out what opportunities you can get amidst this COVID-19 crisis.