Use Your Facebook Page to Market Your Whole Town

by Joanne Steele on March 11, 2011

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This little announcement appeared on my Facebook Wall this morning and I wanted to share the idea. It’s a good one.

Dunsmuir's Cornerstone Cafe & Bakery logoCornerstone Bakery & Cafe’, Dunsmuir CA

If you are local or just visiting, Mt. Shasta has a great little consignment store called Trading Places Consignment Clothing. I just picked up these fingerless/thumbless gloves that local artist, Noel, calls wearable art. Now I’m able to text while wearing gloves, haha.

 

 

The folks at Cornerstone know how to use Facebook well. They have an avid following that regularly checks the site for specials, great local information and general good connection to the region.

I’ve written about The Cornerstone before and they’ve taken their Facebook usage to a whole new sophisticated level. They’re marketing local businesses as well as their own.

Why is it a good idea to market more businesses than just your own?

A marketing consultant and great friend of rural communities, Roger Brooks, reminds us that for every hour someone drives, they expect to be entertained for half a day!

With gas prices what they are, this is valuable and vital information. The Cornerstone Bakery & Café folks know that they have lots of people in cities up to 75 or 100 miles away who love them, and with a little additional nudge, they’ll fill up the gas tank and come on up.

What does this little announcement on the Cornerstone Facebook Page do?

It gives their customers another great reason to come on up – remember the half day rule. It speaks to the trendy, young professional types who love their food, who love the idea of gloves that you can text in, and who may not know about this great little consignment shop just a few miles away from the Cornerstone.

Still, the number one tourist activity noted on every survey since surveys were first taken, is shopping. Cornerstone is pairing eating with shopping with texting!!! Genius!

The lesson here is keep your focus on your customer rather than yourself.

If your Facebook posts look like something out of a tourism brochure, or taken right off an events calendar, you’re missing the point.

It’s about your customer – His or her needs that you can help them satisfy whether it’s something you do or something your neighboring business does. Make it fun, make it useful and watch the positive results for your town and business.

 

1 Gem Webb March 15, 2011 at 6:14 am

Great post Joanne! I practice this as a DMO in South Western Ontario called Bruce County Tourism ( aka: Explore the Bruce ) where I am training the local businesses to post on the massive fanpage (over 6000 in 1yr) I have build up for them at http://www.facebook.com/explorethebruce . I firmly believe that people plan there trips to area based on the things to do, then secondary they choose the place to stay. My biggest push these days is to train all the accommodations in the area to market with this in mind. You are so right about people reading through marketE’ sounding text copy. People catch on in 2.5 seconds if your trying to sell them instead of creating a solution for them. Remember this and you will be on track to reaching your target market.

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