Peninsula Small Business Talk

from the Peninsula Executives Association

Flower

Posts Tagged ‘getting more business’

Catering in 2011 with Bobbie Fakkema of Events, Etc…

Bobbie Fakkema of Events, Etc… recently shared with PEA how she has created new business opportunities in the recession.  Bobbie stressed during her talk how important it is to be flexible and willing to change.  She started a new branch of Events, Etc… last December called No Box Catering, providing local organic sustainable lunches for corporate workers without cafeterias.  She drops off platters of food that include a meat, vegetarian, salad, bread and butter, and dessert combination.  Then they come by to pick up the trays after the meal.  Currently, this branch of Bobbie’s business has about 150 clients, and although her short term goal is to serve 500 lunches per day, her long term goal is 4,000 per day.

Bobbie’s favorite type of job is event catering.  She showed PEA members some beautiful pictures from the many events she has catered over the years.  One of her favorite events was a birthday party featuring tables with green leaves for the tablecloth.  In lieu of traditional flowers, they used pods for flowers.  This is the type of event that Bobbie would like to see come back.

Although there are still concerns for Bobbie in the catering business (like increasing food costs), she prides herself on her focus on providing healthy, beautiful food!

Time to Update Your Google Places Page

This week’s tip was contributed by Randy Mills, Pioneer Services.  Randy recently read an article on changes in Google Places pages and how to set up a Google Places page for your business.  It’s a good idea to revisit your Google Places page and update your settings to take advantage of some of these new features.  Randy commented that after reading this article, he updated his Google Places page.  He then took a look at it on Google and realized that Google Places also links to your Yelp reviews. In addition people can leave reviews at Google Places.

The article is available as a hard copy from me if you would like to see the details.

Do you have a tip you would like to pass on to fellow PEA members? Please send it to Executive Director Neal Coogler.

This tip was contributed by Randy Mills, Pioneer Services.  Do you have a tip you would like to pass on to fellow PEA members? Please send it to Executive Director Neal Coogler.

You Created a Facebook Business Page – Now What?

Another great guest post from Kim Tucker of All Reasons Moving.

Now that you’ve created your Facebook business page, you should:

–Log in every day, check for customer comments. If someone posts a question or comment to your page you want to respond right away. A customer will not be happy if they ask a question or post a comment and don’t get a response for weeks or months.

–Post a new feed at least once a week. Really you should be posting two-three times per week but if you find that too demanding start with once a week.

–Post pictures. You can post pictures of your product. Highlight your staff if you have employees. Post specials you may be running. Post pictures of your work.

–Do you have a Blog? Post the link to your blog on your FB Page so people can click the link to read and comment on your Blog.

    Social Media is about Networking. If you go to an event to represent your business, you can’t expect to get business standing in the corner waiting for people to approach you. You need to introduce yourself and make new friends and new connections. You need to work the room, the same applies with Social Media.

    Thanks again, Kim!

    Claim Your Site Today!

    PEA member Kim Tucker has a great tip for small business owners looking to improve their Google juice.  Do you have a tip you would like to pass on to fellow PEA members? Please send them to Executive Director Neal Coogler.

    Now on to Kim:


    Have You Claimed Your Site?

    by Kim Tucker, All Reasons Moving

    Have you claimed your site?  In most cases your business is already listed on many different sites and all you have to do is “claim” it. It’s FREE!

    A good resource is to go to http://getlisted.org. Type in your company name and it will tell you if you have claimed your business on such sites as Google, Bing Yahoo and a few others.  From there you can click on the links and register your business.  Claim your business today!

    Back to Neal:

    If you are thinking of creating your own blog, check out Kim’s site for a great example of small business blogging. Thanks for the tip, Kim!

    Tip of the Week: Getting Internet Reviews

    by Neal Coogler

    Getting reviews is an important way of both improving your visibility on the Internet (getting better Google search juice) and getting business through recommendations.  Here are some tips gleaned from Search Engine Journal (see www.searchenginejournal.com for the full article) on a strategy for getting reviews:

    1. Do not fabricate reviews yourself or ask for fake reviews.
    2. Check your reviews. Search on your company name + phone number and you will find reviews on your business (plus other places where information about your business is listed you may not have known about).
    3. If possible, thank those who have left reviews. Many sites allow you to either send the reviewer a message directly or to write a response to the review. When you respond, you could ask them to follow you on Twitter or Facebook, and “ultimately create loyal customers who can be called on in the future for helping with your online reputation.”
    4. Choose a few sites that you want to promote as the places for customers to go to leave reviews.  Don’t ask for reviews on only one review site or for too many – keep the focus on two or three.

    Here’s my question for PEA members who are already asking customers to leave reviews: which review sites are you using and why?  I’ll publish the responses to this next week.