Neil A. Carousso produces and co-hosts WCBS Newsradio 880’s Small Business Spotlight series with Joe Connolly. Click here to watch the weekly video segments featuring advice for business owners on survival, recovery and growth opportunities.
  • Google’s Wendy Gonzalez Gives Advice On Sharpening Your Digital Skills At WCBS Small Business Breakfast

    STAMFORD, Conn. (WCBS 880) — Participants learned how to take full advantage of the digital tools available for their business at the WCBS Small Business Breakfast Wednesday morning.

    Joining WCBS 880 Morning Business Anchor Joe Connolly at the Stamford Hilton was Google Small Business Marketing Expert Wendy Gonzalez. Guests heard tips on how to grow their business online and to sharpen their social media strategy.

    Among the pieces of advice Gonzalez passed along was how to make the social media presence for a business engaging and personable – even if the business itself might seem to be on the dry side. Connolly mentioned one man he knew who worked as an accountant, and engaged potential clients on social media by showing himself coaching his Little League team on the weekends.

    “For a lot of people, the whole world in accounting is very scary, and it’s something that is the last thing on your to-do list to deal with. But everybody has to deal with taxes and business. You’ve got to deal with your finances – of course, you’ve got to deal with your finances,” Gonzalez said. “So you want to work with somebody who seems personable. The video can show that.”

    She noted that no matter what the business, there is always something in that lends itself to video and social engagement.

    “The first step, really, is to take a step back and say, ‘What’s our goal here?’ Because I think you can also see a lot of YouTube channels where they have a lot of videos, but none are very interesting. None feel very authentic. None feel like you’re getting information,” Gonzalez said. “So I think the first step is to say, ‘Well what’s the point? What am I really trying to do here?’ So in the case of that accountant, I think my goal would be, I am trying to show that I’m somebody that you want to hang with. I’m somebody that you can relate to. I’m coaching Little League. This is what I do on weekends. That is going to lead to a different video strategy and social media strategy, and someone who wants to show these products, or someone who wants to show these customer stories. It all depends a little bit on what your goal is.”

    Following the discussion, Gonzalez said the most important takeaway was that businesses are looking for ways to find customers the same as ever, but with new tools at their disposal.

    “To me, it’s still the bread and butter of business that people are looking for customers. And people are looking for customers now on all sorts of different platforms, and approaches and strategies on how to find those customers, but ultimately, that is still what people are looking to do, and digital is a great way to find those customers now,” she said.

    Gonzalez noted that when it comes to digital strategy, businesses are going well beyond the “hours and directions” box on Google.

    “When a business pops up on the right-hand side, that’s run through a program called ‘Google My Business.’ So business owners can claim that listing, and they can add their hours, and they can add photos, and respond to reviews, and we have a new feature called ‘local posts,’ where people can post information that’ll last for about a week, including videos – so just more engagement; new ways that people can – as a business owner – engage with their customers, right at those moments when customers are looking for them,” she said.

    Google AdWords were also a major topic of interest at the breakfast. One man noted that if AdWord number one is too expensive, taking the second slot is not a bad idea.

    “Ultimately, we are always trying to deliver a relevant experience to a user, so looking at your search term; looking at the ad text; looking at your website; finding what is relevant to whoever is searching, and sometimes that is the number two ad position,” Gonzalez said. “So of course, number one is great, but I think he made a great point that he sees a lot of success by sometimes being the number two search result.”

    Now in its 23rd year, the WCBS Newsradio 880 Small Business Breakfast is the longest running small business event series in the New York area.


    Neil A. Carousso produced WCBS Newsradio 880’s multi-media coverage of the Small Business Breakfast and assisted in organizing the event in Stamford, CT on March 28, 2018. All WCBS 880 videos and social media posts were written, edited and published by Neil A. Carousso.

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