Online management tools can help small businesses reach potential customers

Extension offering virtual town halls and webinars to help inform small businesses during the pandemic

Willie Daugherty and JR Mendoza

Extension is offering a town hall this Wednesday featuring Willie Daugherty (left) and JR Mendoza (right), to discuss first impressions in business.

Online management tools can help small businesses reach potential customers

Extension offering virtual town halls and webinars to help inform small businesses during the pandemic

Extension is offering a town hall this Wednesday featuring Willie Daugherty (left) and JR Mendoza (right), to discuss first impressions in business.

Willie Daugherty and JR Mendoza

Extension is offering a town hall this Wednesday featuring Willie Daugherty (left) and JR Mendoza (right), to discuss first impressions in business.

Extension continues its online town hall and webinar series this week to assist small-business owners. Wednesday’s town hall will focus on first impressions in the business world, and tips on how to make a good first impression. Friday’s webinar will focus on “Google My Business,” Google's online management tool for business owners, and how to use it to reach and engage potential customers. Both the town hall and the webinar are free, and there will be English-language and Spanish-language sessions.

The events are part of a series of town halls and webinars for small businesses, “Coping With COVID-19,” being offered each week. The town halls begin with a presentation on a given topic, and then participants network with one another and drive the discussion. The webinars provide information on specific topics to help entrepreneurs and businesses plan strategically, adapt and succeed. This week’s sessions include:

The town hall, “First Impressions in Business” is Wednesday, Aug. 26, at 9 a.m. for English speakers, and at 2 p.m. for Spanish speakers. Panelists include:

  • From the Small Business Administration – Saul Ramos, deputy district director (9 a.m. session); and Alfredo Cedeño, outreach/marketing specialist (2 p.m. session)
  • From Extension – Willie Daugherty, program officer; JR Mendoza, community-based instructor; Reyna Mendez and Juan Salas, business development instructors; and Mike Bindrup, research associate

The webinar, “How to Use Google My Business,” is Friday, Aug. 28, at 9 a.m. for English speakers, and at 11:30 a.m. for Spanish speakers. Mendez and Bindrup will discuss:

  • An introduction to Google My Business – What is it? Is it worth it?
  • Setting up a Google listing
  • Exploring the essential settings Google offers to businesses, including G Suite
  • Google ads and Google analytics
  • Creating paid campaigns and interpreting customer feedback

“Using tools such as Google My Business is more important than ever, with COVID having us all rely more heavily on getting our information online,” said Buddy Borden, economic development specialist with Extension’s Business Development Program. “Friday’s webinar will show small-business owners how to use this simple tool to make sure potential customers can find them and know what they have to offer.”

Both the town halls and the webinars usually run about an hour. To register:

For more information, go to the Extension Business Development Program website. There are also other resources at the website to assist businesses during the COVID-19 crisis. For more information, email Borden.

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