Ways to get involved in the community (AMA, college courses, etc)

The point of this blog is to help guide the small businesses in the Tampa Bay area in growing their marketing skills. Whether it is becoming more acclimated with how to advertise on Facebook or Google, my goal is to help you become more profitable and increase brand recognition. Besides reaping the knowledge of the internet, I strongly recommend relying also on the community among you. There is so many outlets, and people to network with to try to gain knowledge from on a more personal level. Students are studying what you want to learn about, and your other neighborhood stores are usually in the same position as you. Your trying to get perspective on how to market your business without having to hire expensive companies to do that for you.

Where I’ve suggested hiring interns before that know what to do, they usually expect to get something out of the internship that can help them back. It is always good to have something on your resume that more or less can be explained as “I saved a company from dying out because they didn’t have any sort of social media presence”, but they want more then that. They want to learn also. So what are some options that ‘Seducing the world one post at a time’ hasn’t really touched on?

 

American Marketing Association

Or AMA for short, is a professional marketing association that has many chapters across America. These are the professional networks, but there are also college chapters one of which I am apart of (University of Tampa’s AMA chapter). While there is a membership fee, the chapter of Tampa Bay offers events throughout the year that non-members can attend for a small fee. This gives you the option to expose yourself to trending topics, talks, networking opportunities, and of course knowledge.

AMA Tampa Bay has an active Twitter, and runs a helpful blog that different chapters contribute to. Checking them out might not be such a bad idea, and attending a guest speaker would only require a bit of time commitment and small amount of cash that only benefits you.

 

College Courses

Well, this one is self explanatory right? No one expects you to take a course at a private university for kicks and knowledge, but you can. But you also can rely on cheaper methods namely community colleges like SPC and HCC depending on your location. There are courses offered year-long whether you want to take something up during the spring, fall, winter, or summer they probably offer you a course you are looking for. You have to apply to the college and be accepted before taking any courses usually.

So before you decide to invest your time and take a class make sure you can find one that is a low level course that doesn’t require any pre-requisites but also one that is really something that is going to benefit you. A general marketing course will teach you about marketing, but a marketing course directly revolving around digital media will help you much more. There are always courses outside of the mentioned schools above. You can take courses from non-accredited ‘schools’ you could say. Just search it in Google ‘Facebook marketing course’, something along the lines of the site you want to learn more of.

 

Your peers

Another easy one. Also a no-brainer but I can’t blame you if you haven’t really thought of it. If you get in touch with some neighborhood businesses that are either suffering or doing relatively well they probably have some knowledge about marketing digitally to the community. If your both qualify as a small business, the owner is probably gonna see you not as a rival but someone they can help teach. Trading what you know will be very helpful, and there are always opportunities by collaborating. You can have a joint sales promotion, or advertise each other through word of mouth and flier to the customers you have already established.

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     So what are you waiting for? There are a number of opportunities you can take advantage of and better both your business and yourself in the field of marketing. Feel free to leave questions or suggestions in the comment box below I love hearing back from my readers. Again, I am a student so my knowledge only stretches so far – but I’d love to learn anything from you no matter what your field is. I am studying International Business and Marketing and I hope to someday be a digital marketer for the Walt Disney company.

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