Small businesses and entrepreneurs throughout Kentucky Highland’s service area recently took advantage of a unique opportunity to expand their digital presence. Since Summer 2019, Kentucky Highlands Investment Corporation participated in the first large-scale national rollout of Empower presented by GoDaddy in association with AEO (Association for Enterprise Opportunity).


GoDaddy is the world’s largest online service platform for entrepreneurs around the globe and serves more than 19 million customers worldwide. The Association for Enterprise Opportunity works on a national level to create economic opportunities for underserved entrepreneurs throughout the United States.

Empowerment Program

The Empower program gave some of the microbusiness owners we serve the tools, skills, and mentorship needed to build a successful digital presence. Participants attended online digital marketing workshops created by GoDaddy and conducted by staff. In addition, they received support through group and webinar trainings along with networking opportunities with like-minded small business owners. During one training session, small business owners were able to discuss with GoDaddy’s chief technology officer strategies to differentiate themselves online and how to make the most of their new websites.

New Opportunities

This opportunity was especially timely during this Spring as many businesses and retailers were looking for ways to transition from exclusive brick and mortar locations to offering their goods and services online. The Empower program provided a host of products that allowed them to make this transition smoothly and quickly in order to limit any disruption of commerce.

At the conclusion of the year long program in July, a total of 151 area businesses had participated and were set up to launch their website offering their products and services online. Of those businesses, an impressive 58% were women led ventures. As these businesses continue to leverage the digital space, it’s going to be exciting to see them use the skills they used during the Empower program for future growth.