Saturday, July 17, 2010

Sunshine Coast's Best Social Media Networker is...


Congrats WINNERS! 1st unofficial Sunshine Coast, BC social media networking awards. Two emerged as your favourites. The people's choice. Here are their stories...

And the best social media networker on the Sunshine Coast for 2010 is ...

duaneburnettfacebooklogo2

OK, but first I am going to say congrats to each and everyone of us who have given facebook and twitter a try. It's so new, and for me a steep learning curve as its is I am sure for each and everyone of us.

And BEFORE we get to the winners, hehehehehe, who were also kind enough to share some excellent social networking tips, here are your comments which lead to the decision!


Know a GREAT Coast Business that uses facebook and/or twitter really well?


Kim Kerr Fenton
Unwind Knit and Fibre Lounge does!! We use FB to let folks know about what new stock there is, who's coming to knit night, what is fun about town. Twitter: ditto! I love seeing new fans on the page and like to offer special deals to my FB and twitter readers such as discounts and freebies. It is the best way to get all the news that is fit to knit!

Teresa Nightingale
The Sweet Chef - April tweets several times a day, we always know what she's doing/baking!

Bodacious Lifestyles
We love using facebook and twitter to keep our customers and 'fans' up-to-date, announce new products, offer specials to facebook followers. We've seen a huge response - especially here on the coast. It's a great way to reach people and get involved in community. Thanks for asking:) Lorna - Bodacious Lifestyles Inc.
(also love to see so much facebook activity here on the coast - it's a great way to get and stay connected!)

Leo Gregory
Here are a few: Aquathought, Brian Hubenig design; Just Business People Canada magazine; The Wild Bistro (kera and hubby); Bonar Harris who organizes music at the Wild and of course yours truly ANCA Consulting Inc, a Naturally Autistic ANCA organization. oh, we appreciate Coast Accountants and a few others, as well as you Duane and your wonderful photography etc... And yes, The Aweet Chef - wow - there are many others like The Garden Bay Hotel - Ron is the owner, fabulous guy and so on...

Leo Gregory
I don't know if they all use facebook but definitely Bonar, The Wild, Aquathought doand us.

Leo Gregory
Because Brian has integrated himself with the online autistic community that I connect with, so have you for that matter. As a business man in his industry, he has supported through his online presence and socialization those in the autistic community who might not of thought to connect with small businesses, locally-nationally or internationally. The Wild Bistro is fab because I get to know what is going on there and when - so if I need a bit of r&r time and something nice is happening there, I know immediately via the fb network they have.I don't know if Bonar is a business - but it is the same with him too, he is always posting and I can keep up easily with when I need that music night or that spoken word night etc... It is a fingertip away and very connected to my own autistic network and community on fb. It is the same with what you do, you always keep me in the know, in the loop - better than the newspapers. Also the tourism org. here - I get to find out what is going on such as local events, whenever I want Hope I have explained, expanded on this OK??? As for my company - all my clients are kept in the daily loop with what is happening at ANCA as well as the international crowd we support and serve. It is fab!!!

Lynette Legault
Loumidees does to keep all you awesome ladies dressed well at really paycheque friendly prices...50% off tomorrow!! Stop by and see what all of you are missing. Way to go women in small business and of course 2 men:)

Melina Cassidy
Wild Bistro. Hands down.

Brian Hubenig
Leo at ANCA... She's a hub of a very large community internationally. Regular posts and updates, linking to news sources and resources for autistic people. Leo messages people directly when there's a major story or topic ensuring her friends have the opportunity to discuss the topic with others. Leo does a great job of moderating the discussions ensure that people are treated with respect.

Locally I have to say the Wild and Bonar (killer combo – I know what's going on all the time). Why I like the Wild so much is because they promote artists. Giving a venue to artists is so important and in turn the patrons support the musicians and the bistro – a wonderful combination

Donna McMahon
I appreciate the Wild's notes about menu items and reminders of upcoming events.

Margaret Page
Duane, I think you are the best! M.

Verna Chan
Yep--you use it really well Duane and I agree with many others, The Wild does a great job of keeping everyone informed about what's going on at their place--and they keep it fun!

Claudia Ferris
The Wild Bistro gets my vote for giving us regular updates. I also like that Kera asks folks about important issues such as the introduction of the HST - Kera and I both use Facebook to get a read on where our businesses are at to help us properly represent them in our roles as directors of the Gibsons and District Chamber of Commerce. I love ... See MoreFacebook as a way of gauging opinion and getting great ideas around many of the issues I deal with on the Chamber and the Sunshine Coast and District Labour Council. My Facebook friends are super smart and have great ideas!

Mardi Ahmed
Wild Bistro

Claudia Ferris
Duane you also get my vote as the most helpful social networker on coast. I have really appreciated you posting all the event stuff from the various organizations I'm involved with.

Heidi Zurbrugg
Wild Bistro... they send out upbeat updates re. menu and upcoming events (music, spoken word). I always wish I were at the Wild when I get the updates.

Jack Amble
Roxanne Haddrell Personal Tax Service keeps me informed on new income tax developments. It is always nice to know about new income tax laws ahead of time so I can do some tax planning. She also has some Tax Humour posted there for when I need a laugh. Roxanne is also an active supporter of the SC Food Bank. I like to see local businesses giving back to the community.

Deborah Keith Geoffrion
I think the Wild led the pack here...way ahead of everyone else in grabbing hold of facebook tools for business and social networking. As a matter of fact whenever I am speaking to another business about getting a facebook page I suggest they become a fan of the wild to see how its done.

Heidi Zurbrugg
Plus, the Wild backs it all up with great food and experiences. Important point.


So, who do we choose as the best at social media networking based on all these comments???

From my experience and being on facebook and twitter extensively, combined with all your wonderful nominations and feedback....

I am going to say Kera Mchugh at the Wild Bistro in Gibsons, is the clear favourite with April Querishi of the Sweet Chef as a close 1 1/2. LOL better then second!

Congrats Wild Bistro & The Sweet Chef!

I asked both the Wild Bistro and Sweet Chef to please share with us their social media secrets and insights that they thought were behind people choosing them as their favourites.

This is great information if you want to be on facebook or twitter.

In their own words....

KeraMchughIanBacksWildBistro

Kera Mchugh & Ian Backs
Wild Bistro, Gibsons, British Columbia, Canada
Phone: 604.886.1917
http://www.facebook.com/wildbistro
www.wildbistro.com/liveatwild
http://twitter.com/wildbistro


1) What exactly are the things you do on facebook and twitter for your business that people like?

on facebook i make note of upcoming shows, i try to post any daily specials - ie. soup or muffins or desserts that might be special that day, and make commentary about current affairs that directly impact us... i do this on both the wild bistro page, and my personal profile... sometimes they match, sometimes not.

i also run informal polls/surveys, ask questions that i'm having trouble forming an opinion about, look for insights & suggestions from customers & friends when we're faced with a decision that has more than one possible outcome....

and sometimes, i simply post my feelings about certain topics... generally i keep those to my personal profile rather than the WB page...

on twitter, it gets whatever i update my status on FB to - i don't really do anything specifically via twitter, who has time???


2) Why and What are the benefits of this medium to you and your customers/fans.

i think our FB fans benefit by a) having up to date info all the time, b) having an opportunity to share their opinion or ideas, c) giving input about a topic that potentially impacts them, d) getting some inside scoop that can help them make informed decisions, especially about where/how to spend whatever little extra they may have

i think we give our customers a little sense of ownership, and at least a sense of inclusion, when we ask for their opinion on things, and i believe that significantly increases loyalty... because they feel like we care about what they have to say... and we absolutely do! we may not always act on everything, because we can't act on every single suggestion, as often they differ on the same topic... but we definitely consider every one and then make decisions using that information.

3) Do you have any recommendations for other organizations and businesses on how to be the best at facebook and twitter?

there's a fine line, i think, between being open with your customers and opening up your business to them - i try not to be TOO open, because that doesn't leave me any room to change my mind and creates a lot of opportunity for more questions, which then eat up more time... AT THE SAME TIME, we don't really have a lot to hide - we're pretty open & honest with people face to face, so why not be so on facebook too... i think people appreciate it...

the other thing is not to air dirty laundry - i try not to comment about things that annoy me personally or that are particularly negative in nature... at least not about PEOPLE...

i think our customers get a sense that they really KNOW us from our interactions on FB - people read our personal status and get a sense of who we are, and whether or not we're on their wavelength... i think that also makes for more loyal customers... and it helps us to increase our customer base with people who are like us, with similar tastes, philosophies & outlooks, which in turn then makes the whole restaurant more enjoyable for everyone who comes here...

and, it's entirely possible that everything i've said above is complete hogwash and it has no real impact whatsoever! :D



AprilQuerishiTheSweetChef

April Querishi,
The Sweet Chef Bakery,
Gibsons, British Columbia, Canada
Phone: 604-989-CAKE(2253)
Custom cakes, gourmet cookies and designer wedding cakes.
http://www.thesweetchef.com/
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Gibsons-BC/The-Sweet-Chef/120439028633
http://twitter.com/thesweetchef

1) What exactly are the things you do on facebook and twitter for your business that people like?

It’s important that we engage our customers and followers in conversation. People want to be involved in what’s going on in your business. People want to be a part of a community such as your business. Make them feel welcome and engage them in conversation.

If you’re friends with me on my personal Face Book page then you get a chance to see another side of me. I’m a wife, mother, daughter and person in your community and I understand where you’re coming from. I’m just like you!


2) Why and What are the benefits of this medium to you and your customers/fans.

It keeps you up to date on all that’s going on in the bakery such as new a product launch, upcoming events and where to find our great products.

It’s a great way to let people know what special you have that day/week/ month.

We also like to include industry events and news in our dialogue. It gives an insider’s look into an industry such as baking and pastry arts that people wouldn’t otherwise get a chance to see.


3) Do you have any recommendations for other organizations and businesses on how to be the best at facebook and twitter?

Make a commitment to do it. Follow through and be consistent. You need to post on a regular basis so people have a reason to come back.

++

Some awesome advice. Thank you to both Kera and April for taking the time to share with us their trade secrets on social media networking. Thank you to all of you who nominated your favourites! Should we do it again next year?

Thank you so much for reading my blog! All your comments, feedback, "Likes" and story suggestions are super greatly appreciated! Best Wishes, Duane Burnett

How Well Do You Tweet? by The Entreprenette Gazette
19 great tips on better tweeting and social networking!
http://theentreprenettegazette.com/2010/06/09/how-well-do-you-tweet/


It's Always A Good Day on the Sunshine Coast!

Hope you liked! Come and Join me on facebook or twitter! Duane

http://duaneburnett.com
http://duaneburnett.blogspot.com
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Duane's Facebook Profile
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Duane's Facebook Fan Page
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