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Social Media Small Business Success Stories: Part 1

February 14th, 2012 ::
This entry is part 2 of 2 in the series Social Media Success Stories

Social Media Success Stories Part 1

I’m a firm believer in benchmarking to learn new skills and to tweak my knowledge base.  Studying what other successful marketers have done well, and avoiding others’ mistakes, is an efficient way to gain a competitive edge.  Here are eight social media small business success stories, broken into two articles, to inspire and to teach:

Success Story 1:  Take a quick visit to The Prospecting Expert’s social media sites, and you will find our first example of social media success.  The Prospecting Expert, founded by Steve Kloyda, is a B2B consulting firm to help sales professionals refine their prospecting skills.  Here are the tactics in Kloyda’s bag of social media marketing tricks:

  • Kloyda has made impressive use of video and podcasts to expand his social reach and convey information in an clear and interesting way.  Does your content translate to these media?
  • His social media channels share consistent branding, though use of Kloyda’s photo and logo across all platforms.  Clean up your own image by checking your platforms for consistency.
  • Kloyda’s content is mobile through the offering of an iPhone app directly on his site.  While custom apps may be expensive, they offer considerable value for on-the-go customers.

Success Story 2:  Click on over to Coconut Bliss, an organic dessert company whose products became well known through social media marketing.  Here is what Coconut Bliss does to make everyone scream for their ice cream:

  • The company shares fun experiences of customers eating their ice cream to show the brand’s friendly personality and delicious products.  Does anyone on your staff know how to take great photos?  Invest in a camera, and share photos across all your social media platforms.
  • Coconut Bliss gets fans engaged by running promotions and contests exclusively on social media.  Consider launching your own contest to grow and excite your fan base.

Success Story 3:  JamaicansMusic is an online music channel and quite the social media success story.  Using their social media savvy, the company grew their fans to 1.5 million in only four months!  Here’s what they do best:

  • JamaicansMusic keeps fans coming back for more by offering contests, free music and games to encourage Facebook fans to revisit their page and share it with friends.  What can you do to encourage repeat visits to your own page?
  • Visitors to JamaicansMusic’s website know instantly that the company is social because there are three opportunities – right on the home page – to connect socially.  Are you sending enough social signals and providing plenty of opportunities to connect?

Success Story 4:  You don’t have to be a large company, or even one with multiple employees, to be a social media success.  Ana White, a self-described “homemaker” who is really a carpenter, runs a website that empowers women to take on carpentry projects.  White has over 51,000 Facebook fans who enjoy her DIY furniture projects.  Here are her smart and simple tactics:

  • White publishes free how-to guides for building furniture, and she asks fans to post pictures of their finished pieces.  Fans enjoy sharing with each other, and White understands that this sharing provides great user-generated content.  How can you get your own community involved in the content creation process?
  • White has created a community and tended to it without overshadowing it.  She comments on roughly half of her fans’ posts, and she doesn’t post all that often.  However, her fans constantly post and answer questions for each other because the community has been set up for real communication.  What can you do to take your own Facebook communications from one-way to a place of real community?

Next up: More inspiring stories in Part 2!

Image courtesy of creative design agency Arrae

Market Your B2C Business With Bizzy

March 16th, 2011 ::

If you haven’t heard, there’s a new geolocation site in town.  Bizzy’s service is really very cool, so look them up for your own personal use.  But if you own a taste-based B2C company, like a restaurant, bakery, coffee shop, bar, club, clothing boutique, or home furnishings or accessories store, you have a potential new marketing tool at your disposal. Bizzy provides personalized business recommendations based on user preferences, not on professional reviewers, bloggers, or, as they say, generic people.

Here’s how it works: Users answer a set of 10 questions to get them thinking about their favorite places.  Then the Bizzy algorithm analyzes their answers, which are matched up with people in their area who have similar tastes.   Bizzy’s recommendations are based on the similar users’ recommendations and vice versa.  They use a really great example: a steak-loving executive on an expense account and a vegan college student are probably not going to love the same restaurants.

Because Bizzy is data-driven, the more people who use Bizzy, the better.  More data = more answers = better recommendations.  With their new Check Out mobile app for iPhone and Android, data should increase dramatically as users instantly register their thoughts on a business.  Users also have the ability to share those thoughts with their friends via Twitter and Facebook, which is great for you!

Bizzy is such a cool company, they even have a guide for businesses that starts out with this:

If you have ever printed a sale flyer and tacked it to the wall of your shop, your business should be on Bizzy.

Here’s how they’ll help you:


As people tag you as a favorite on Bizzy, you’ll get a nice little word-of-mouth campaign going.  You’ll reach more people, get recommended more, get tagged as a favorite more, and so on.

Content Sharing

You can even push out new content via Bizzy to the people who tagged you as a favorite.  It could be news, tips, special offers or events. The better the content, the better for you, because it’s also shown to people who don’t know you, but should know you based on their other favorites.

Social Media

The great content you share (you know, news, events and offers, that kind of thing) can be shared by Bizzy users on Facebook, Twitter, and by email.

Cutting Through Noise

We all get too much email, more tweets than we can read, and Facebook updates galore.  Bizzy will help you cut through the noise, since they are “a dedicated space where people come for the express purpose of finding their favorite local businesses and discovering new ones.”


Bizzy is free.  Enough said.

So, start telling your customers about Bizzy!  You can even register your business on Bizzy at the bottom of the Bizzy for Business page.

Image courtesy: Bizzy.com