The second meeting of Pawling Chamber members with the Small Business Association (SBA) was held at Trinity-Pawling School on Monday, July 26th.
Invited participants who own or represent area businesses, gathered to discuss how they currently market their businesses and services, and how they can improve their marketing strategies.
Peter Cris, President of the Pawling Chamber of Commerce and Man-Li Kuo Lin, Economic Development Specialist from the U.S. Small Business Administration’s NY District Office, led the Marketing Round-table.
After introducing themselves, attendees were invited to share their best marketing tools. Strategies included the use of social media (Facebook, e-mails, Twitter, etc.); news letters to customers, signage, and the use of newspaper, radio, and printed material. Many found word-of-mouth to be a helpful marketing tool.
Mr. Cris said The Pawling Chamber of Commerce, which meets monthly, promotes ways for members to use each other’s services. Sharing contacts to fill out data bases is one way for local businesses to help each other.
Following a break for lunch, attendees were asked to describe the biggest obstacles they face in growing their businesses. Some said finding workers in their field and getting training for workers. Others mentioned obtaining funds and funding sources to expand, and time management as obstacles.
Many participants agreed on the necessity of having a solid business plan to take their businesses to the next level was key to expansion.
Sara Lee, CEO of the Dutchess Business Alliance, offered to help attendees with resources for grants, and access to other funding to fill the needs of the diverse businesses in attendance, and to help them reach a wider market.
The final discussion centered around topics for the next meeting and when it would be held. Mr. Cris will be pursuing this.
Many of those in attendance felt the SBA and the Dutchess Business Alliance, would be great resources for them, and agreed that helping to promote each other’s businesses and products would be helpful for all.
Photo Courtesy of Bailey Wolff
Ann Godesky and Bernadette Shustak representing WPWL