EMV – Credit/Debit Card Workshop and October 2015 Deadline
If you are a merchant that accepts credit cards and debit cards to sell your programs, products, and/or services, changes for this payment process are right around the corner. Are you familiar with the liability that may occur in the switch that is expected to take place October 2015? Don’t let time run out to register for the EMV Credit/Debit Card Workshop presented by the Aztec Chamber of Commerce. Download the registration form or call (505) 334-7646 to make your reservation for January 28 OR January 29. Bank personnel from Citizens Bank and Four Corner’s Community Bank will present information to help better understand changes for this payment process as well as the equipment needed to use the new cards. Seating is limited. Lunch will be provided. The workshop is open to all businesses in the Four Corners. You do not have to be a chamber member.
You can read the latest informational articles on EMV changes here:
Why are Public Relations for your business so important?
Never has public relations been so alive since social media hit the communications scene. But most business owners feel they need a big budget to advertise their programs, products and or services. Regardless of the size of your business, promotion of any kind is key to keeping your doors open and offering new and existing customers a perspective of what is available to allow them to make buying decisions.
Did you know the four most important social media tools aside from your company's website are: 1) Facebook, 2) Twitter, 3) Pinterest, and 4) YouTube? You are probably sure about a couple of these and puzzled about the others, so let me explain.
• Facebook. Facebook is the number one social media site of all times. Aside from the great stats it offers informing you of its reach to many, Facebook offers many advantages: 1) It is the fastest way to grow your contacts. 3) You can connect to other contacts by asking your client base to share your promotions with the people they know (their contacts on their Facebook. 4) You can promote your products, upcoming sales, and offer discounts using codes or coupons quicker than any newspaper (no timelines, print deadlines, proofs to view, etc.). It is the fastest way to expand your business. It’s important for you to know not to confuse this site with your personal Facebook page; you can create a business page(s) off your site and even blog about what you have to offer (we'll talk about blogging later in this article).
• Twitter. Twitter is the second most used social media site. The problem I have with twitter for business is the fact that you need a dedicated person to keep sending tweets regularly. In a business, regardless of size, this is always a tough one. Personally, I am not a twitter fan, but it does come in handy when businesses have an event, announce a sale, or use this site to raise awareness of any type of activity taking place that might move someone to stop by and shop. The one thing you do not want to do is to begin tweeting, only to stop. If you use this social media site be prepared to dedicate a person or time to continue to tweet. Also, once you begin to tweet for your business, you don't want to slow down.
• Pinterest. Yes, your eyes are not mistaken. Pinterest isn't only for women. Many businesses are getting on board to launch their products and to promote their business because Pinterest is sure fire to help increase their reach. Pinterest began as a site to offer ideas, recipes and DIY (do it yourself) project sharing. Today you can market and sell products and services on Pinterest. More important, you can create a following on Pinterest. So if you are considering creating a Pinterest site, make sure you post something at least weekly.
• YouTube. YouTube is gaining almost the same popularity as Facebook for businesses. Think of it as free commercials! But as easy as it is to film what you want to say, sell, and promote, make no mistake, it can make you or break you if it is not done well. A young lady was promoting a way to style hair with a new curling iron. Unfortunately she had not practiced this in advance and hundreds of thousands saw large lumps of burnt hair remain on the curling iron. Although the error was hers and not the curling iron, sales dropped for that model in minutes. The most important rule for using YouTube is the fact that videos are on this site forever! So plan carefully and wisely. If it is a video that goes bad, trust me, it will spread like wild fire. If you elect to take advantage of this great opportunity, create and post a YouTube commercial at least four times a year. Don't forget to link your YouTube film to your Facebook!
Why should you love the four sites above? Two reasons: 1) They are some of the best forms of advertising and promotion and most important, 2) they are FREE!
Blogging is a way to talk to your existing customers to talk about your business. It’s also a great way to attract a bigger base of potential customer. Blogging is easy because all you are doing is talking. Find something interesting to say or something that will reel in a customer. Identify conversation the customer can benefit from or words that will move them to come back often. If you blog, you must post at least one time a day.
Additionally, regardless of the social media sites you will elect to use, take advantage of events that surround or involve your business, e.g., festivals, holiday opportunities like Aztec Sparkles, national holidays, etc. These are great because they are advertising promotions paid for by the city or your chamber and the advertising is free without impacting your budget or bottom line. However, if you elect to take advantage of events, it will be just as important to “self-promote” as well. Use your existing database to send out posters, web info, information, etc., prepared by the city or chamber. Advertising may be free but make an investment to get your name out as well and don’t depend on the event to do it for you. Two heads are definitely better than one!
With A Growing Economy Comes Change
Effective January 1, 2015 the Gross Receipts Tax Rates for all of San Juan County are increasing.
Business Chamber Luncheon
Our January Business Luncheon was well attended as City Manager Joshua Ray, shared his knowledge and expertise on evolving Aztec, New Mexico and what’s to come in 2015.
The February Luncheon will be on Thursday, February 19 at noon. Watch here for more details.
We invite all non-members to attend and learn about what the Aztec Chamber of Commerce is doing and how we can include your business. Beginning January 2015 the attendance fee for all non-members will increase to $15 per person.
Do you like what you see? Contact us today to renew your membership. Our membership directory deadline is November 15. Interested in meeting and making new friends? Sign up to help out with one of our Chamber Task Forces: Networking/ Membership, Events, IT, or ATOS (Aztec Trails & Open Spaces).
There is a lot going on and it’s all for YOU but we know there is more that the Aztec Chamber of Commerce can do to help you grow. So what is that? What topics would be of interest to you as a business owner? Where do you need the most help or answers? Are you aware of the many membership benefits available to you included in your membership dues?
Written by Vangie Garza Neil
Aztec Chamber of Commerce
The Aztec Chamber of Commerce is not part of the City of Aztec. The Chamber does not receive funding from the City of Aztec with the exception of their annual membership. The work we do and its support is based solely on your chamber membership dues and the Chamber’s fundraising events. We felt it was important for you to know that as our role is to be your voice in so many levels.
Aztec Chamber of Commerce
110 N. Ash
Aztec, NM 87410
(505) 334-7648 (fax)
Chamber of Commerce:
City of Aztec Visitor Center: