Sacramento workshop aims to help businesses get ahead via Facebook

Published: Thursday, Jul. 31, 2014 - 11:03 pm

Those Facebook photos of enticing dinner entrées and pretty storefronts might draw some customers, but experts with the social media giant are coming to town next week with new ideas geared to lift the fortunes of Sacramento-area small businesses.

Facebook’s Small Business Boost, a collaboration formed nearly three years ago, will lead a free Aug. 6 workshop to help local small business operators grow their enterprises and optimize their presence on the site. The Sacramento Metro Chamber of Commerce and Rep. Doris Matsui, D-Sacramento, will co-host the 10:30 a.m.-to-noon program at Tsakopoulos Library Galleria, 828 I St. Check-in and networking begins at 10 a.m.

Matsui said the workshop, featuring a team of Facebook experts, “will help small business owners in Sacramento connect with Facebook’s 1.3 billion users and potential customers.”

The Small Business Boost program touts its ability to help small businesses find more customers while saving money spent on marketing programs that might be less effective. Experts advise business owners on the best way to use Facebook tools. They also offer individualized advice.

Event organizers have included speakers from several Sacramento-area entities that have used Facebook to their advantage, including Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento. The museum is seeking to maximize social media outreach this year.

Leah Schonlank, online marketing specialist at Crocker, said she was hired four months ago to focus specifically on social media.

“Because it’s social media, it’s always evolving,” Schonlank said. “We’re always trying to give our followers content that’s relevant.”

The Crocker’s Facebook page is heavy on colorful visuals and upcoming activities. Schonlank said, “we’re posting something from our permanent collection every day.”

She said the three primary online goals are to educate, inform and entertain: “It’s like visiting the museum when you can’t get here physically. The (public) response has been super positive.”

Facebook’s business services arm touts enormous numbers in its workshops. It says there are than 2 billion connections between businesses and individual Facebook users, and there are more than 30 million U.S. small businesses using Facebook to connect with customers. In an average week, Facebook says, there are nearly 650 million views of business Facebook pages. Facebook claims that its advertising reaches 89 percent of an intended audience.

To register or obtain more information on the Aug. 6 workshop, see

A separate workshop is set for 10 a.m. to noon Aug. 7 at the University Plaza Waterfront Hotel, 110 W. Fremont St., in Stockton. Rep. Jerry McNerney, D-Pleasanton, is one of the co-hosts. To register or see more details, go to

Call The Bee’s Mark Glover, (916) 321-1184.

Read more articles by Mark Glover

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