Veronica Twombly, Head of Small Business Communications at Facebook on Georgia Podcast

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Veronica Twombly, Head of Small Business Communications at Facebook on Georgia Podcast Facebook brought its global Boost with Facebook event back to Atlanta and the event was a huge success. Facebook welcomed over 1,500 Atlanta community members to the Southern Exchange Ballroom and kicked off the two-day digital skills training event to empower small-business owners with the tools and resources they need to build their business. While at the event we interviewed Veronica Twombly, Head of Small Business Communications at Facebook. Facebook is excited bring Boost with Facebook back to Atlanta. There are more than 1 million small businesses in Georgia. 99.7 percent of companies based here have fewer than 500 employees 94.1 percent have less than 50 As part of our pledge to train 1 million small business owners and individuals by 2020, we want to make sure each and every one of them has the tools and tactics to succeed in today’s competitive marketplace. When we spoke to the Georgia small business community about the most important factors when hiring employees, more than 8 in 10 (81%) said an individual's digital skills were important. More than 6 in 10 (64%) said that Facebook is essential for their business. More than 5 in 10 (51%) said that the platform has helped them hire additional employees and nearly 8 in 10 (79%) said that Facebook allows them to reach more customers outside their city, state, and country. We're inspired by what small businesses have been able to do using Facebook, but we want to do more – particularly for those who are transitioning to work requiring more digital skills. o If you're looking for a job, we'll provide training to help you sharpen your digital and social media skills. According to the research, 62% percent of US small businesses using Facebook said having digital or social media skills is an important factor in their hiring decisions — even more important than where a candidate went to school. o If you're an entrepreneur, we'll have training programs on how to use technology to turn an idea into a business or show you ways to create a free online presence using Facebook. o If you're a business owner we're going to offer ways your business can expand its digital footprint and find new customers around the corner and around the globe. o If you're getting online for the first time or you want to support your community, we'll provide training on digital literacy and online safety. And we'll also help community members use technology to bring people together, with features like Events and Groups. General U.S. Findings: o 80% of US small and medium businesses on Facebook say the platform helps them connect to people in their local community. o One in three US small and medium sized businesses on Facebook say they built their business on the platform; and 42% say they’ve hired more people due to growth since joining Facebook. o Businesses run by African Americans, Latinos, veterans and those with a disability are *twice as likely* to say that their business was built on Facebook, and *one and a half times more likely* to say they’ve hired more people since joining the platform. o 56% of US small and medium sized businesses on Facebook say they increased sales because of the platform; 52% of say Facebook helps them sell products to other cities, states and countries. Learn more at: https://www.facebook.com/boost A panel of Atlanta small businesses walked through their own experiences and shared how they use these skills every day in their business. Panelists included: Joes Gourmet- Maranda Walker-Dowell Maranda came up with the idea of packaging a ready to cook breading mix about three years ago and the business has been growing ever since. Facebook and Instagram have been key to their growth, as they are trying to drive traffic to their e-commerce so they can sell their 12 oz fish fried package nationwide. They use advanced tools to target their audiences, the Facebook Pixel and Dynamic Ads being the most notable. Creating Custom and Lookalike audiences have made it easier to reach the right audience. Thanks to their success and community involvement they have been featured in Shark Tank and Good Morning America. Magnolia Room Tucker - Nate Martin Magnolia Room Tucker was created to pay homage to a restaurant called “S & S Cafeteria”, which the owner was a patron for 15 years. Nate said that the owner saw that people were going to lose a great restaurant to visit and work at, so he bought the business, moved it to Tucker, and even hired on at least 20-25 of the staff. While they have some local competition that has been in business for over 60 years, and Nate says that if it wasn't for Facebook, Magnolia Room would not have survived. Seven Sisters Scones - Farrah Haidar Seven Sisters Scones started their business in 2015, when one of seven sisters (who was actually a chef) decided to start selling her delicious scones. The business has expanded from selling simply scones to a cafe where they have a full breakfast and lunch menu. The scones have become so popular that Farrah decided to build an ecommerce business to start selling nationwide. A Facebook representative also presented the latest tips and tricks for businesses on the platform. Participants learned best practices on connecting with more customers, creating ads to increase conversions, managing a digital presence and building awareness of a brand. Learn more at: https://www.facebook.com/boost More about Georgia Podcast "Who's Who and What's New Georgia!" Interviewing industry and thought leaders with compelling stories. In addition to the live broadcast, content is distributed across multiple syndicated platforms with more than 500,000 downloads. Show Host: Rich Casanova, Chief Visionary Officer Pro Business Channel Rich Casanova began his broadcasting career in California’s central valley at KSKS-FM. While in California he also ran a successful entertainment company whose staff and crew entertained over 100,000 people. After moving to Atlanta and selling his entertainment company, Casanova ventured into publishing as the Publisher and Franchise Owner of Coffee News, headquartered in Bangor, ME. Later became the Founder and CCO, Chief Connection Officer, of an online platform where local business professionals register to receive a free list of the top 100 networking events in metro Atlanta. With a name like Casanova and his gregarious personality, Rich was a natural as a music radio DJ. "I got the radio bug early in my career and often thought how great it would be if there was an opportunity to participate in a talk radio format with a pro-business perspective interviewing thought leaders from the local business community." Thus was born the Pro Business Channel where Rich is the CoFounder and Chief Visionary Officer. http://www.ProBusinessChannel.com https://www.linkedin.com/in/richcasanova https://twitter.com/RichCasanovaCom Check out more episodes at: http://www.GeorgiaPodcast.com Submit a guest request at: http://www.OnAirGuest.com View guest photos at: http://www.ProBusinessPictures.com

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