The number of black-owned businesses  more than tripled from 2002 to 2007, according to the U.S Census Bureau’s Survey. Because the Census Bureau conducts their survey every five years, there is no way to judge how the recession has affected these numbers until 2015. However, it doesn’t take the Census Bureau’s new numbers to know that times are tough. A drive down Main St. showcases empty storefronts and For Rent signs lining up down the streets. How can a business owner stay optimistic when their neighbor just closed up shop?
Recognize that your small business isn’t perfect.
No business is perfect, nor does every business fully meet the needs of their customers. Once you embrace the mind set that your small business could improve, employ small business social media marketing to find out how you can better meet the needs of your customers. Social media marketing is more than a Facebook page, Twitter account or newsletter. Successful social marketing engages customers, asks questions, provides information and uses customer feedback to shape business plans. It’s like the old adage, “The customer is always right.” You go into business to meet the needs of your customers and not your own personal needs.
How to effectively use social media marketing for small business?
Figure out how your business differs from other similar business types in your area. Write a list. Try to make your list specific. Avoid writing something that is too general such as: My company provides excellent customer service. Every company claims to provide “excellent” customer service. Write something specific like: We will not charge for the service if we don’t get it right the first time. After your come up with your list, it’s time to take it to the people.
Use Facebook to try out new small business social media  marketing ideas. Promote specials or new marketing ideas on your Facebook page. Facebook is where your customers are. Where else can you appeal to a wide demographic? Facebook is also where you showcase success stories about your company. Have customers send in photos, give testimonials or offer recommendations. You don’t need full-page advertisements anymore to attract customers, because they will advertise your company for you. By using the hard economic times as an opportunity to improve your company, you can come out of the recession a better business.