Monday, October 21, 2013

Even Singapore Hawkers (Hawkerpreneurs) Can Use Social Media Courses ...

The Hawker Master Trainer Pilot Programme was launched today (21 October 2013).  In this programme, selected Singaporeans and Permanent Residents will be taught how to be "hawkerpreneurs."  During the programme, hawkers will be taught how to prepare ingredients, cook, present food, serve customers and how to keep their stalls clean and tidy.

One topic which we felt was missing was how to use social media to reach out to more customers.  Generally, operators of food stalls cater to a "natural market" of foot-traffic. This foot traffic, from nearby housing estates or office buildings, is usually sufficient for the hawker to earn a living.  To earn more, the hawker must be able to create a name for himself and pull customers from all over the island. The low cost of internet connections and smart-phones gives the hawkers a unique opportunity to proactively brand themselves and grow their businesses.

One social media marketing tip CW Fong & Associates has for these hawkers is to create the word of mouth effect.  This can be done via the creation a Facebook page and then encouraging customers to "share and save." In this promotion, customers are encouraged to post their comments about the food in exchange for a free upsize or an extra serving. This does not cost much, but the potential is large.  Assuming you serve 100 customers per day and 1 in 10 share, with an average of 300 friends each, that means 3,000 people who will know about your food.  Additionally, as it comes from a friend, the credibility is much stronger.

At the end of the day, at CWFA we believe that people do not become entrepreneurs to simply earn a living.  People become entrepreneurs to earn their fortunes.  That is why they take the risk.  So in order to help our new breed of hawkerpreneurs make their fortunes, we believe that they must be taught how to embrace social media marketing to brand and raise awareness for their product and services.

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For more information on CWFA's social media workshops for small business owners, email our consultants at justin[a]cwfongandassociates.com.

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