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Main Street Business Seminar Series – Don’t Miss This!

June 8, 2011

Each session is $20.00 ($15.00 if you are a member of ANY Otsego County Chamber – including Cooperstown Chamber of Commerce).
All sessions will be held from 8am -10am at the Oneonta Theatre, 43 Chestnut Street, Oneonta.
Please RSVP to Carolyn Lewis, Otsego County Economic Development by email at lewisc@otsegocounty.com.

Main Street Business Seminar Series (5 Sessions, 1 content hour/Session)
Main Street businesses in cities and towns have struggled in the face of declining populations and the dominance of shopping malls and big box stores. The reality is that vibrant downtown areas are still possible, but it takes an all-hands effort by business owners and other stakeholders to

make a downtown area as appealing, diverse, and customer-friendly as possible. Social media and other technologies are bringing sophisticated marketing and customer service within the reach of small businesses. Through customer focus, coordination, and thinking like a destination,

Main Streets can once again be the commercial and social centers they were meant to be.

Session 1 – June 15, 2011:
Focus on the Customer and Grow
This seminar will look at the importance of consistently delivering value to your customer. We will look at ways to identify, understand, and attract your target customers–from the basics of curb appeal and cleanliness to techniques for analyzing customer patterns and soliciting feedback.

Session 2 – July 21, 2011:
Bricks and Clicks, Social Media for Retail
Are you on Google Places? Facebook? Twitter? A retail space is not enough– even with a high-traffic Main Street location. You need a presence online and available through smartphones and other portable devices. We will look at both bare bones and more aggressive approaches to leverage new media to drive customers to your business.

Session 3 – August 17, 2011:
Creating a Following, Building Repeat Business
Customer communication and service is no longer just about the time they spend in your store or restaurant. Customers are connected and willingly maintain relationships with businesses they like. We will look at blogs, e-mail marketing, and affinity programs and how small businesses can

use them to build repeat business and turn customers into advocates for your business.

Session 4 – September 21, 2011:
Building Your Team, Managing Employees and Business Relationships

Any business worth building takes a team. Surrounding yourself with talented staff, vendors, and advisors will make your business (and your life) better and allow you to share the burdens of growing a great business. But bad relationships can kill a business and the responsibility is yours. We will look at the challenges of recruiting and managing partners, staff, and service providers, including the dark side of terminating failed relationships.

Session 5 – October 19, 2011:
Be a Destination, Building a Successful Main Street
Downtown (and regional) businesses largely live or die together. A diverse, vibrant Main Street drives traffic to everyone. A combination of anchor businesses (or attractions) and a variety of restaurants and specialty stores can provide a shopping experience worth driving (or walking, biking, etc.) to. We will explore opportunities for collaboration on improved common spaces, events, and promotions, as well as the importance of recruiting new businesses to fill empty storefronts.

Main Street Business Seminar Series.doc

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