Yesterday my mail arrived and with it was a large envelope from the Sussex County Chamber of Commerce. I was very curious what was inside, and upon opening it found a copy of the 2010/2011 Sussex County Magazine, published annually by the chamber. My memory is a little fuzzy, because I thought I had gotten a copy last year and had it out at TraillWorks. So I paged through it and as the leaves were turning, a bright blue page with the Facebook logo got my attention. As I started scanning the article, I saw my name! I don't know if I missed this due to "mommy brain" or if it is a new publication from the one I had.
Be that as it may, last year the chamber emailed its members for feedback on how they were using social media in their business. The chamber intended to use some of the responses in an article to be published in the next Sussex County Magazine, and low and behold, they used my comments! It pays to respond to those little requests organizations ask for. You never know what may get published.
I've been using Facebook and Twitter for almost a year now, with varying results, but I see it as an integral piece of my marketing plan and am even now pursuing a new web design for traillworks.com that is more social media integrated. I mention in the article my use of contests to increase my fan base and I'm currently doing just that as part of David Ohlerking's exhibition at TraillWorks, which runs through January 29th. Every week I'm posting one of his photos to my Facebook page and asking fans to write on the wall their guess where David created the painting. At the end of each week through the 29th, I'm randomly drawing one winner who will receive a $25 gift certificate for use at TraillWorks. You can read more about the contest on my previous blog post.
In addition to my comments, Gene Ventimiglia of Ventimiglia Vineyards, Mountain Creek, The DavidHenry Agency, and Crystal Springs Resorts all give great examples of how they are capitalizing on social media. Plus, Katrina Foster, principal of KKPR Marketing and Public Relations, a local young entrepreneur, lends some expert advice in using social media in small businesses.
To read the article in its entirety, visit the sussexcountychamber.org, hover on the "media" tab to bring down a drop down menu and select "read Sussex County Magazine" to download a pdf file. Seems complicated, but this is where my technology wanes. If you know of an easier way to convert their pdf to a file that others can easily browse through like a magazine, please leave me a comment and I'll edit this blog post with a more user-friendly format. And, thank you to the Sussex County Chamber of Commerce for seeing value in my experiences to publish it in your magazine!