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A Big Opportunity for Hometown Retailers

Author: Michael Sansolo

The Independent View

Michael Sansolo

Social Media: A Big Opportunity for Hometown Retailers  

 March 12, 2013 


The IGA Global Rally in Chicago is just around the corner; look to The Independent View in the coming weeks to learn more about the speakers in the Global Rally lineup. Today, industry insider Michael Sansolo elaborates on his session, which will explore opportunities for marketing to and connecting with shoppers via social media.

In an industry populated by giant chains, IGA retailers find countless ways to thrive. Yet it all begins at the same place: ties to the local community that help an independent understand and serve needs.

Given that history, it's increasingly important for independent operators to get up to speed on the entire arena of social media and networking. Why does the social web matter so much? For one thing, it too is all about community, only now it's a technologically enabled community.

The social web is about discussions of what's important and what's happening. In other words it's a perfect place to local owner-operators to listen to the chatter in their local community and to participate with recipes, merchandising and a host of great ideas.

But you cannot do any of this without a basic understanding of the landscape of the social web and the key steps necessary to build a successful program. That's why I am delighted to lead a session on this incredibly important topic at IGA Rally this April in Chicago.

My presentation is based on the latest report from the Coca-Cola Retailing Research Council of North America. The council members, including leaders from both large chains and small independents like you, felt confused and somewhat lost in this new world. So they set out to build a highly useful report to help them and other business leaders understand and implement the new technology platforms that—in under a decade—have reshaped communication around the globe.

The entire Council report can be downloaded here for free. In it you will find practical tips for retailers trying to determine how best to engage on Facebook, Twitter or other social sites. And at the Rally in Chicago, we'll talk through the important details, and then have some discussion with IGA retailers who have interesting and relevant experiences to share.

Whether you are an IGA retailer in California or China; South Carolina or Sydney, the social web is ensnaring your community, your shoppers and your associates. Like it or not, it's time to get going. Join us in Chicago and we'll help you start making sense of this new world of communication.


Michael Sansolo