Facebook visits Boise, offers tips for small business owners

Boise - Representatives from Facebook visited Boise Thursday, Aug. 24, teaching nearly 200 small business owners ways to boost their presence and engage with customers using the popular social network.

With more than 130,000 small businesses registered in the gem state, small business is big business for Idaho. 

"One of the keys to running a successful small business is to keep learning," said Katie Sewell, Director of the Idaho Small Business Development Center. "A lot of business owners think, 'Hey, I got this," but really, there's a lot of  things you don't know you don't know."

From likes, tags and creating content, small business owners got the inside scoop on how to grow a business using Facebook and Instagram -- directly from the social media giant. 

"You can automatically reach your customers any place, anytime and anywhere," said Chris Curtis, small business team leader for Facebook. "So it allows small businesses to do that and reach them where they're already spending their time."

With 207 million people in the United States using Facebook every month, social media has turned into an important -- and lucrative -- tool for small business owners.

Organizers say seminars like this one, which was free, helps strengthen Idaho's small business market.

"The small businesses create two out of every three jobs in this country," said U.S. Sen. Jim Risch (R-Idaho). "...and more than half of the jobs in Idaho are created by small businesses." 

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