By HANK HAYES
KINGSPORT — The Kingsport Office of Small Business & Entrepreneurship (KOSBE) is offering a new webinar series to help business owners come out on top in this COVID-19 pandemic.
KOSBE is partnering with Beyond Engagement, a social media solutions company, to do the series.
The webinar series addresses three distinct areas: how to sell products on Instagram; how to reach more customers with video and live stream; and how to use social media data and analytics to grow.
Valentina Gonzalez-Escobar, founder and president of Beyond Engagement, is the presenter. She has years of online marketing experience.
“There are some things business owners should outsource, like building a website and marketing strategy development, but there are many things in the social media realm they can do themselves,” she pointed out. “The information that I will be sharing is something all business owners should know, regardless of who is actually doing the work. If they know this, their money and time will be better spent, and their online presence will be more effective. Everyone will walk away with something they can implement immediately, and it will change how they engage with customers and prospects online.”
The lineup of webinars is as follows:
Wednesday, March 17, 12 p.m. EST — Part I — How to Sell your Products on Instagram https://clients.tsbdc.org/workshop.aspx?ekey=10410007
Thursday, May 6, 12 p.m. EST — Part II — Reach More Customers with Video and Live Stream
Tuesday, July 13, 12 p.m. EST — Part III — Learn and Grow your Business from Social Media Intelligence https://clients.tsbdc.org/workshop.aspx?ekey=10410009
KOSBE Executive Director Aundrea Wilcox had this to say about the new webinar series: “We don’t care how you look during the webinars. We just want you to register and you will see us there. These webinars are so important, especially right now. I am seeing some businesses truly winning during this pandemic, because they havereally stepped up their social media and are investing in web site development and marketing.
“Taking a business online can be complicated and messy. Business owners have been asking me to host a DIY webinar on how to launch e-commerce, but there are hundreds of possible options. It’s not as easy as it may seem. And, even if it is, many times business owners haven’t properly researched application compatibility or implemented search engine optimization successfully.
“I strongly recommend businesses get a professional involved to assess their unique situation and move forward with a customized approach suitable for their skills, resources and individual budget. If you have to spend money right now, at least know what you should spend it on, and what you might be able to do yourself.”
While the webinar presenter will be on live video, attendees will not. Attendees can interact via the chat feature by submitting questions during the live presentation. The webinars are free and also open to the public (non-Chamber members are welcome), but registration is required.
Business owners are encouraged to invite employees, family members, friends and associates to sign up separately. Each will receive a private link to attend the session via the ZOOM platform. The presentations will be recorded, but only attendees will have access afterward.
Valentina Escobar-Gonzalez, founder and president, established Beyond Engagement Social Media Solutions in January 2012. She has a passion for helping small businesses grow their engagement levels with customers online using more effective social media marketing.
Gonzalez keeps up to date with the latest marketing, communications and social media trends by networking, not only in the Tri-Cities, but across the state.
She recently joined an expert panel on the stage at the region’s only social media conference in Knoxville, which was attended by over 500 marketing professionals and small business owners. The topic involved strategies for beginner social media marketers, with an emphasis on Gonzalez’s real-world experiences with small business owners, nonprofits and educational institutions.
In 2004, the Kingsport Chamber and City of Kingsport jointly formed the Kingsport Office of Small Business Development & Entrepreneurship (KOSBE), to specifically nurture, counsel and encourage the continued robust growth and development of startups and existing small businesses in Kingsport.
On February 15, 2011, the Kingsport Chamber announced the new partnership between KOSBE and the Tennessee Small Business Development Center (TSBDC) becoming the TSBDC at ETSU Kingsport Affiliate Office.