With more than a half billion people on Facebook connecting to thousands of customized fan pages a day, it seems like a no-brainer if you’re running any kind of business to get yourself onto the most popular social media platform in the world. Port Jefferson merchants are no exception, flocking to Facebook to help expand their business and connect with new and old customers alike.
“Facebook offers a big audience, a platform to experiment and a unique social experience,” said Marcelo Litovsky, husband to Lainie and business partner in .
He said that although not every one of his customers is on Facebook, the social reach is big enough to make it worth the effort.
“We want our friends to talk about Lainie's Way and have their friends join us,” he said.
For Tracie Smith from , a music education school in Port Jefferson Station, the biggest reason to be on Facebook is simple. It’s where all the kids hang out.
“Kids growing up today are tech savvy,” Smith said. “They use many forms of media and it is a great way to get our message out to that market.”
What if you’re an old school business that has a deep history in the community? It may mean people have preconceived notions about what you do. For the , being on Facebook is a way to stay fresh and in front of the public to show off everything the library offers.
“Some people think of the library as a place to do research and take out books,” said Nikki Greenhalgh who does communications for the Port Jefferson Free Library. “Many are not aware of all our excellent services and programs.”
She said that they’ve been successful reaching a different demographic and building awareness on Facebook along with another popular social media venue, Twitter.
“At the library we are constantly striving to remain relevant and pertinent,” Greenhalgh said.
Besides enabling businesses to reaching a new and diverse audience, the price is right.
“It cost us nothing except time,” said Litovsky.
Lily Zajc agrees.
“Especially if there is little or no budget for advertising,” said Zajc, a public relations and marketing professional working with the .
She said that Facebook has actually helped to increase attendance to the showings and more people recognize the organization.
Measuring how effective Facebook is to overall business can be tricky sometimes.
At Lainie’s Way, Litovsky says the only reliable metric to determine if it’s working is how many “likes” they are adding. Liking a Facebook page is a vote for the page and a way customers tell the business owner that they want to develop a relationship.
“I think the best part of social media sites like Facebook and Twitter is that people elect in,” said Leon Klempner, an orthodontist and partner at in Port Jefferson. “If you do not show value, you can easily be ‘clicked’ off. In other words, you need their permission.”
The network is the most valuable thing. When one person likes your page all of his friends see that. It’s an opportunity to reach a virtually unlimited number of people.
“As each additional user joins our page, we are able to reach more people than ever before with a click of a button,” said School of Rock’s Smith. “Each lead is quality because they are choosing us instead of mass mail or email campaigns where receivers view ads as spam nine times out of 10.”
The most popular posts that School of Rock puts on Facebook are photos from shows and events. For of Port Jefferson, it’s inspiration sayings related to health, wellness and self-improvement that are most popular, according to Jennifer Graci.
Greenhalgh says that the library will often connect something from the catalog like a book or music CD to a real life event or anniversary. People seem to like those the best.
“People love when we post interesting facts about events or people and link them to suggested reading,” she said.
At Coolsmiles, Klempner said that he gets permission to post photos of his patients on the day they get their braces off.
“They’re proud of their new smile and so are we,” he said. “It’s a chance to show off our expertise.”
He said that the "final smiles" photos are most popular. Patients are happy and proud to show off their "cool" smile to all their friends and family.
This goes to the heart of Facebook’s success: people sharing their life stories with friends and family in words and pictures.
It’s why businesses say that overall, the ability to tell their story to customers is one of the best things Facebook allows them to do.
“It is a great medium to tell people what we do and why we do it, not just what we sell,” Litovsky said. “We are not just a toy and game store or a business on Main Street. We love what we do and we express it on our wall.”
The list of businesses using Facebook is almost as long as the list of businesses in Port Jefferson itself. Below we listed as many as we could find so you can go and like them. Did we leave you off our list? Let us know and we’ll add you.
- A Taste Of Port Jefferson
- Arame Salon and Spa
- Arthur Murray Dance Studio Port Jefferson Station
- AT&T Port Jeff
- Billie's 1890 Saloon
- Brewtopia of Port Jeff
- Bridgeport & Port Jefferson Ferry
- C'est Cheese
- Cactus Salon & Spa
- Calvary Baptist Church of Port Jefferson Station
- Carlisle Johnny and C.A.R.S. Classic Auto Appraisals
- Carnival Restaurant & Pizzeria
- Celebrate Your Home
- Celtic Quest Fishing
- CertaPro Painters of Port Jefferson
- Comsewogue High School
- Coolsmiles Orthodontics
- Cub Scout Pack 41 Port Jefferson, NY
- Danfords Hotel & Marina
- Elements of Port Jefferson
- Fifth Season Restaurant
- First Presbyterian Church of Port Jefferson Activities & Missions
- FRESH Art Long Island
- Historical Society of Greater Port Jefferson
- Hurricane Grill & Wings | Port Jefferson
- Incorporated Village of Port Jefferson
- Jolie Powell Realty
- Journey Martial Arts, Port Jefferson Station
- Lainie's Way
- Lavender Fields Home Boutique
- Lombardi's on the Sound
- Long Island Music Hall of Fame
- Maritime Explorium
- Mount Sinai Fire Department
- Not Just Futons
- Pace's Steakhouse
- Play N Trade
- Port Jeff Army Navy
- Port Jeff Motorcycle Store
- Port Jeff Senior Prom
- Port Jefferson Beverage
- Port Jefferson Brewing Company
- Port Jefferson Chamber of Commerce
- Port Jefferson Dance Academy
- Port Jefferson Documentary Series
- Port Jefferson Farmer's Market
- Port Jefferson First United Methodist Church
- Port Jefferson Free Library
- Port Jefferson Free Library Teen Department
- Port Jefferson Free Library Young Adult Center
- Port Jefferson Frigate
- Port Jefferson Green Fest
- Port Jefferson Health & Wellness
- Port Jefferson Launder Center
- Port Jefferson Music Festival
- Port Jefferson Physical Therapy
- Port Jefferson Station / Terryville Civic Association
- Port Jefferson Station, New York
- Port Jefferson Volunteer Ambulance, Inc.
- Port Jefferson, New York
- Port Plaza
- Portside Bar & Grill
- Red Mango - Port Jefferson
- Repower Port Jefferson
- Salsa Salsa
- School of Rock in Port Jefferson
- Second Chance Ranch Thrift
- Seva Yoga Studio in Port Jefferson
- Smile Rescue Fund for Kids
- Sugar Sugar Day Spa
- Tara Inn
- The Knitting Cove
- The Meadow Club of Port Jefferson
- The Port Jefferson Bike Dr.
- The Secret Garden Tea Cafe
- Theatre Three
- Thomas Kinkade Gallery Of Port Jefferson
- Toast Coffeehouse
- Tommy’s Place
- Travel Pleasers
- Uncle Giuseppe's
- Village Way
- Vincenzo's Pizza Of Port Jefferson NY
- You Can Breastfeed Here