Carol Schneider of Slinger smiles as she shops with her
friend, Kathy Bruch of Oshkosh,
on Tuesday afternoon at Faith and Giggles in Hartford.
John Ehlke/Daily News
playing field for businesses has rarely been equal, with
larger retailers traditionally dominating the
advertising and revenue space.
advent of the internet, however, has made it more even
by allowing local businesses to leverage social media to
increase revenues and their customer base, providing
them with opportunities to challenge the traditional
retail corporations on scale that was unthinkable about
a decade ago.
“The multitude of social media platforms can be an
incredible asset to businesses,” University of
Wisconsin-Washington County professor Chris Yogerst
said. “With Facebook touting its over one billion users
across its platforms, it’s easy to see how social media
is a great method of outreach.”
There are several businesses in the area that try to
take advantage of the different platforms. Al Jung, who
operates Dunn Bros. in West Bend, posts regularly to
social media to promote his business.
“For us, we are on Facebook primarily, and then we are
on Instagram,” he said. “On Facebook, we have a posting
almost every day.”
Jung will vary the content however. On some days he will
notify potential customers of deals they plan to offer
while at other posts he will highlight various aspects
of the area.
“Oftentimes I will do some community things,” he said.
“Maybe there is something that is happening over the
weekend. Sometimes I will highlight customers if they do
something or if they are known for something in the
can also be a branding tool.
“Social media is a cost-effective way to not only reach
out to your customers/followers/partners but is a useful
way to get immediate feedback,” Yogerst said. “This
allows the company to constantly research their
followers, engage with them, and customize messages
Jason Nix and Wendy Smith operate Faith & Giggles, a
gift shop in Hartford where they inspirational and
religious items that customers can give as holiday or
everyday gifts. They use social media to communicate
regularly with their customers.
feel like it can express our personality so much better
than anything because we can show our product, we can
show what we are all about, particularly comic relief,”
Wendy said. “We can show our humorous side, our
compassionate side. It is so interactive. We are able to
interact with people.”
There is also a drawback to social media because it
creates an environment that magnifies mistakes.
“Part of the problem is the knee-jerk immediacy that all
social media encourages,” Yogerst said. “If something
posted on social media strikes the wrong nerve, some
people cannot just scroll past. Instead, they need to
create a hashtag-fueled movement to destroy the company
or person responsible.”
address this, businesses must be careful what they post
and how they communicate with the public to ensure they
are putting forward the best perception of themselves.