Social Media Monitoring and Garcia’s

Social media monitoring is the process of tracking, measuring, and evaluating an organization’s social media marketing initiatives and campaigns. Successfully using social media monitoring tools will help a business evaluate their social media strategy, garner customer feedback, and understand customer needs. The social media tool that would work best for Garcia’s Latin Market is Hootsuite. I suggest that Garcia’s use Hootsuite as a free service at first and then upgrade to the $14.99 premium version as their social media initiatives grow. It is appropriate to use a social media monitoring tool for Garcia’s in order to see the progress of the social media campaign. Hootsuite is the best service for Garcia’s to use because it has a great reputation as being an effective social media monitoring system offers similar features to paid services but is absolutely free.

At this point if my social media campaign was successful, it was because the unique Facebook posts that were generated gained the interest of the target market and influenced them to visit Garcia’s Latin Market and make a purchase. If there was anything I would change is interviewing the owners or Garcia’s Latin Market and posting it to Facebook in order to add the transparency of the business and help followers understand the values of Garcia’s Latin Market.

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Social Media Ads and Garcia’s Latin Market

If I was to create an ad on social media for Garcia’s Latin Market, I would use Facebook Ads as the preferred platform. Advantages to using Facebook are Garcia’s Latin Market already has a following on Facebook and they can reach the largest audience. The content will include the popular lunch special which includes a breakfast or lunch taco, a side, and freshly squeezed juice for $5 dollars. The ad will display a picture of the lunch platter and say, “Hungry? Come join us at Garcia’s Latin Market for locally sourced foods and our $5 lunch special.” Ads will be straight forward and friendly while also featuring professional quality pictures of the foods served. Facebook Ads are potentially beneficial to Garcia’s Latin Market as another cost effective way to reach their target market and generate new customer traffic in the restaurant. Although it is effective to use ads, typically a successful social media strategy costs up to $200-$350 a day in order to reap all the benefits. Garcia’s Latin Market doesn’t have a large budget so I recommend they use as many free social media platforms as possible and avoid using money on ads until money is saved up to produce an effective social media ad strategy.

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Can a White Label Social Network help Garcia’s Latin Market?

White label social networks are getting increasingly popular for businesses as they can be customized to suit the needs of the particular audience they are targeting. With white label social networks businesses can avoid all the other distractions of public social networks and generate specific content to influence their target audience. White label social networks that are able to meet all the needs of a business typically come with a high cost, so I would recommend Garcia’s Latin Market use its resources wisely and avoid investing in a white label social network.question-mark-vector-1068869Theoretically if Garcia’s Latin Market utilized a white label social network it would entail of a network that allows users to see all daily specials, user interactions, and unique store products on a news feed. The white label social network will also have a delivery service option that allows users to order food and or contact Garcia’s Latin Market for catering an event. There will also be a feature that allows users to give private suggestions to Garcia’s Latin Market on what they would like improved or added to the overall restaurant and market. Users would access the social network by downloading a branded app which will be available on all app stores. Users would be targeted by posting links to the app on Garcia’s Facebook page.

Garcia’s and LinkedIn

LinkedInMaze

LinkedIn is a social media platform designed specifically for individuals in the business world. LinkedIn allows users to build and document a network of business professionals. Users can upload their resume and give some insight into their lifestyle interests, work experience, and skills. Users can also look for jobs, apply for jobs, and communicate with other business professionals and companies on LinkedIn.

Currently, Garcia’s Latin Market does not utilize LinkedIn. I do not think LinkedIn will be beneficial for Garcia’s Latin Market because most users aren’t looking for places to eat on the site and users on the site generally do not spend a lot of time on the platform. Garcia’s Latin Market has a target audience of young adults age 19-31. Although this age demographic is growing on LinkedIn, it will be difficult for Garcia’s Latin Market to leverage this site and grow their customer base if only 13% of users sign on once each day.

If Garcia’s Latin Market was to create a LinkedIn account, there are some benefits that can be realized. They can find new suppliers of ingredients, new buyers to sell to, or businesses that they can potentially partner with.

The “About US” section of Garcia’s LinkedIn profile would read, “Are you tired of generic Latin Food? Come join us at 143 High St for authentic Latin Food prepared using recipes passed down from generation to generation. We are here from 10am-6pm Monday-Friday and 9am-5pm on Saturdays. Stop by and try our specialty tacos and don’t forget to ask about catering options.”

An example post for Garcia’s Latin Market would consist of daily specials, catering capabilities, in-store products, and pictures of past events.

Sources:

By the Numbers: 125+ Amazing LinkedIn Statistics

 

Crisis Management for Small Business

Crisis Blog

Garcia’s Latin Market like all businesses will face some sort of crisis whether big or small. In order to get past these situations and maintain the company’s reputation it is important to have a plan. A potential crisis Garcia’s Latin Market could face is serving food that has an ingredient that makes a customer ill. Garcia’s Latin Market would be wise to learn from the mistakes of Chipotle and handle the situation in a different manner. During the food borne illness outbreak at Chipotle there were rumors of Chipotle attempting to cover up the fact that their food was making people sick. If faced with this situation, Garcia’s Latin Market should apologize to the customer and be completely honest.

Garcia’s Latin Market can handle the situation by responding shortly after the situation happened and by posting an apologetic response on Facebook and Twitter. The apology should address the situation and the necessary steps taken to ensure it never happens again. Each and every security measure should be taken and Garcia’s Latin market should conduct the due diligence on each supplier who produces their ingredients. Posting a sincere response and taken action immediately will show dedicated followers that Garcia’s Latin Market is always looking to improve itself and takes responsibility for mistakes they commit.

Emerging Social Media Trends

In 2015 mobile devices overtook desktop computers as the number one source for viewing digital content. Fifty-one percent of the total time spent on the internet was on a mobile device as opposed to forty-two percent on a desktop computer or laptop. Businesses have noticed this trend and are looking at popular mobile social media apps to advertise their business. One emerging social media platform is Snapchat. Snapchat has been popular because it’s a way to post real time videos and pictures. The videos and pictures are added to the individuals “Snap story”, and act as a broadcast that you can share with the world or just your friends. Another unique feature of Snapchat is the ability to send picture and video messages that automatically delete after it is viewed by the recipient. These unique features have helped Snapchat gain a lot of buzz over the past couple of years and businesses are starting to utilize the platform as a form of advertising.

Garcia’s Latin Market can leverage this platform by posting pictures and videos of their daily specials. Also they can post clips of behind the scenes food prep and cooking in the kitchen. I also recommend they post clips and pictures of their company culture in order to show the specified target market exactly what differentiates Garcia’s Latin Market. Which is authentic Latin food cooked and prepped by individuals who live and breathe the Latin culture.

Source:

Global Mobile Internet Usage Overtakes Desktop for the First Time [Report]

Small Business, Big Opportunity

With large events like the Super Bowl comes marketing opportunities for businesses of all sizes. Small businesses and nonprofit organizations can leverage social media and other forms of media by being highly active during these large media times. I would recommend that my client Garcia’s Latin Market post engaging tweets to our target market of individuals in the 18-50 age bracket who are looking for quality, authentic Latin food. An example tweet I have generated is, “Retweet for a free entrée, winner will be chosen at 7pm.” Using posts of this nature will create buzz for the business and get social media users involved with Garcia’s Latin Market.

Other events that would be important for Garcia’s Latin Market to be involved in are local parades in Morgantown, WVU events, professional sporting events, involvement on social media during high viewer TV events, and involvement during times of high internet traffic. My client can get involved by posting engaging content, food giveaways, and pictures of daily specials. It is critical to post on all social media platforms and to use this platform to promote and showcase their catering capabilities. My client’s target audience will engage them at this time because these are times of high social media activity and typically at these events some kind of food is consumed.  My client can gain these customers by developing an effective social media strategy that will influence consumers to look at Garcia’s Latin Market for all their hunger and catering needs.

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Garcia’s Latin Market

Garcia latin market
Source: Garcia’s Latin Market

Garcia’s Latin Market located on 143 High St, specializes in Latin foods, products, and merchandise. On February 7th, 2016 they will be celebrating their five-year anniversary of conducting business in the Morgantown market.  Garcia’s Latin Market generates most of its business through selling homemade tacos, nachos, salsa, and Latin desserts. They pride themselves in delivering fresh authentic foods that truly represents the Latin culture. Garcia’s Latin market complements restaurant sales by offering Latin products, Latin clothing, spices, and authentic Latin dinnerware.

Eating
Source: Garcia’s Latin Market

Garcia’s Latin Market has two primary competitors. First, I will discuss Black Bear Burritos. They offer foods from a similar culture and with similar ingredients. The major difference between the two businesses is that Black Bear specializes in burritos as opposed to tacos. As marketers Black Bear Burritos has an advantage over Garcia’s Latin Market as they already have a presence on Twitter and Instagram. Combined with the better location and more inviting entrance, Black Bear routinely fills up tables with customers who could potentially be patronizing Garcia’s Latin market.

Their second primary competitor is Chico’s Fat. Chico’s Fat is a Mexican restaurant that offers similar ingredients and meats to Garcia’s Latin market and offers both burritos and tacos. Chico’s Fat currently has a presence on Facebook and Twitter. Chico’s Fat also has a great location at the top of High St, Morgantown and also has better outdoor lighting. These factors make the business easier to find for the consumer therefore they are more likely to eat at this specific restaurant.

Both competitors are currently generating more business and seem to be having success with their social media strategies. Both businesses are active on multiple social media sites and post content directed to a similar target market. They engage these customers by posting pictures of daily specials, offering free food, asking for recommendations, developing unique content, and by directly communicating with potential customers. Although Garcia’s Latin market is lagging in terms of social media, they attempt to remain competitive by offering decent prices and a meal typically doesn’t cost more than $8-$9.

In order for Garcia’s Latin Market to take a larger share of the market they will need to continue to spread the name of the business through utilizing other social media websites and engaging with the customer. This will allow them to better meet consumer needs and generate more business. In order to stay ahead on social media it is important for Garcia’s Latin Market to be active on multiple social media sites. Aside from social media I think they should continue to visit farmer’s markets around Morgantown and continue to serve food across from the Mountainlair at least once a business quarter.

Sources:

Garcia’s Latin Market. (n.d.). Retrieved February 05, 2016, from https://www.facebook.com/Garcias-Latin-Market-LLC-198133700197159/

Social Media Marketing For Small Businesses

Social media marketing has become essential for all businesses in today’s marketplace. In order to compete in the marketplace, it is essential to be have a presence on social media. Small businesses typically cannot compete with large corporations in terms of the amount of money available for advertising.  Therefore, small businesses are forced to look for an alternative method to market their products and brand. Social media marketing is an inexpensive form of advertising that can potentially lead to great monetary and non-monetary rewards.

An effective social media strategy can lead to increased brand recognition, greater brand loyalty, more opportunities to grow the company’s customer base, increased traffic to the company website, decreased marketing costs, better search engine rankings, and increased sales. Most importantly an effective social media strategy allows you to better communicate with customers and gives you an opportunity to better understand the wants and needs of your customers. Each of these benefits, combined with the fact that creating content and a strategy for social media sites is relatively cheap, it allows small businesses to compete with larger corporations on a critical form of advertising media. I do not believe that there is a better or worse platform of social media for small businesses. Although it is essential for small businesses to get on any platform as soon as possible in order to start building the brand’s presence on social media and to keep up with competitors in the marketplace.

Sources:

(2014, August 11). Retrieved January 29, 2016, from http://www.forbes.com/sites/jaysondemers/2014/08/11/the-top-10-benefits-of-social-media-marketing/2/#4ea1ed715232

#IceBucketChallenge

The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge became viral on social media around July and August of 2014. The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge was prominent on all popular forms of social media including Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.  The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge asks for a nominated individual to record themselves dumping a bucket full of ice water on their head or if they refuse they have to make a donation towards ALS research.  Once an individual completes the challenge, they are to nominate three individuals to complete the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge in the next twenty-four hours. The goal of the social media campaign was to promote awareness of the fatal disease and to increase donations towards ALS in order to find a cure for the disease.

The social media campaign was a huge success, as more than 17 million people uploaded videos to Facebook. The videos were viewed more than 10 billion times by 440 million people. Because of the success of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge it is now an annual event that takes place every August until a cure for the disease is discovered. The highlight of the campaign was the awareness generated about the disease worldwide and as of August 2015, $220 million was raised from the challenge and helped advance the research of ALS immensely. According to the ALS Association the money raised from the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has been spent on research, patient and community services, public & professional education, fundraising, and external processing fees.

The target audience for the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge received the campaign in an accepting manner and individuals genuinely had fun participating in the challenge and nominating their loved ones and friends to do the same. Although the social media campaign was a success there are a few things I would change about the campaign. I would recommend encouraging individuals to participate and donate to ALS instead of one or the other. Although $220 million is a substantial amount of money, potentially more money could have been raised if individuals participated and donated. Also I would recommend educating the public on the ALS disease.  Many individuals were taking the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge but had no idea what ALS stood for or what it meant if an individual had the disease. I believe the campaign can be strengthened by educating the public on the symptoms, effects, and causes of the ALS disease.

Sources:

ALS Ice Bucket Challenge – FAQ. (n.d.). Retrieved January 22, 2016, from http://www.alsa.org/about-us/ice-bucket-challenge-faq.html?referrer=https://www.google.com/

Alfaro, L. (2015). Your $220 million to the ALS ice bucket challenge made a difference, study results show. Retrieved January 22, 2016, from http://www.businessinsider.com/your-220-million-to-the-als-bucket-challenge-made-a-difference-2015-8