An Intro: Bridging Reno and Social Media Marketing

One of the first things I noticed about this town when I moved here are all of the small locally-owned businesses. It’s a beautiful thing! I come from Southern California; a world of monstrous shopping malls, chain stores, the “Who’s who” of brand names, and any and every restaurant chain you could possibly think of. I do slightly miss the shopping, however my bank account has benefited.

So what does keep the Biggest Little City…well…little? If you ask me, it’s all of the locally and proudly owned/operated businesses. I can almost guarantee that everyone in Reno knows an owner of a business in town. Whether it be a great bar on the Truckee River, a charming little coffee shop downtown, a clothing store, a car dealership, a gym, or one of Reno’s amazing restaurants… The small businesses are one of the things which keep this city “little” and charming.

So what makes this little city the “biggest” city? This town is growing! According to the US Census Bureau- as of 2011, Reno’s population is 216,830 people. Since 2000, it has had a population growth of 20.22%. In my time here (I’ve been in touch with Reno since 2003) I have seen 2 huge shopping malls (Legends and The Summit) go into business. When I first moved here, my 18 year-old brain immediately acknowledged the lack of In-n-Outs. Detrimental right? There are now 2 in town, whew. We have major chain restaurants and businesses, many in fact. But to a big-city girl this town is very little.

I am currently researching social media marketing. For those of you who have been living under a rock the past couple years- social media are made for social interaction using highly scalable publishing techniques.  Online networking platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, and the wonderful world of blogging, are among the most popular online tools being used to market businesses, organizations, causes, and individuals all across the world.

Existing in such a condensed area, small businesses in Reno are taking off by utilizing these social networking tools. I would like to study how businesses are utilizing social media. How have these marketing tools helped or hurt businesses? How did they get started? Who are the people chosen to manage these social networking accounts?

I have also met business owners in Reno who are NOT taking advantage of social networking simply because they don’t know where to begin! The idea of opening up these accounts and placing your product or service right in front your community (or world even!) can be extremely intimidating. As soon as a business is launched in the world of social media marketing- you are opening the floodgates for people to compliment, hate, praise, judge, or love your business and publicly tell the world all about it. It’s quite a responsibility. Many small business owners have reservations about this kind of marketing, and I would like to research what these reservations may be- and hopefully help them address these concerns. This is FREE MARKETING people! Let your success stories be told online and help grow your business.

I am going to meet with businesses in Reno within the next couple months and discover how they’re utilizing (or not utilizing) social media marketing. I have to mention that I am by no means a social media-marketing, nor a Reno expert. I am a Southern California transplant. I am simply a student of the subject of social media marketing, who is interested in how it is being utilized by businesses. As I learn, I will blog. I hope to accomplish a few things with this blog. 1. I want to extend my knowledge of the uses of social media. 2. I would love to help support small businesses in Reno. 3. I want to help people who feel lost in the world wide workings of social media, and give them some answers and hopefully a direction.

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6 thoughts on “An Intro: Bridging Reno and Social Media Marketing

  1. Your blog looks awesome Kristin. Reading this post makes me really proud to be from Reno. Can’t wait to read about the small businesses you are researching in town and how you’ll take them to the next level!

  2. Great post! I came across the link via Google+. How did you end up in Reno? I too am from Southern California and moved here in 2003. All of the same thoughts you outlined are thoughts that went through my head as well (no In’N’Outs, no decent malls?). I think your analysis is spot on and good luck with your social media goals for small businesses! One example of a local business who is excelling at Social Media is Squeeze In. You may like this post I wrote about it here:

    1. Hi Tiffany, thank you for the reply and the best wishes. I was recruited by UNR to represent their softball team in 2003. Honestly I didn’t even know where Reno was when the coaches introduced themselves to me… “Are you guys by Vegas?”

      Thanks for the tip. I will check Squeeze In out.

  3. Hi Kristen,

    This is a great website and something I think Reno is in desperate need of! I am a Reno native and currently living in Boulder, CO aka the social media hub of America! The job market in Boulder is completely driven by the tech community, with Boulder being a place for start-up tech companies and all the jobs that creates for this community. One of those jobs is called a Community Manager. People are actually hired (and paid good money) to manage all the social sites for the company! It is extremely popular with the restaurant community here. Like I said with all the small businesses in Reno they need to learn how to market themselves for free on these social sites!! I am very excited to hear that someone is actually taking an interest in this subject and I wish you the best of luck with it! Let me know if there is anything I could possibly help you with from Boulder!

    1. Hi Jennifer! You know what’s funny- I just saw a tweet the other day advertising for an open Community Manager position. I have never heard of this prior to your comment.

      Thank you so much for the support and encouraging words! I have some wonderful businesses lined up which I will be blogging about. Social media’s presence IS growing out here and people are starting to catch on. This town is so small that businesses who do it right- can really leverage the exposure and grow $$.

      I will keep your email handy and let you know if I am ever in the Boulder area, we should get coffee =) Thanks again for the support! Stay tuned.


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