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Square Seller Community Mixer: Modesto - Event Recap

This week we hosted our first Seller Community meetup! About 30 business owners from California’s Central Valley met us at Sciabica’s California Olive Oil in Modesto. Thank you to Super Seller @sciabica1936 for hosting us at your store! Guests enjoyed olive oil tasting, snacks, drinks, and networking followed by a panel discussion with 4 local business owners.

 

Panel Recap

 

"It's not what I like, it's what would serve my customer best" - quote from Jon Sciabica

 

Our panelists discussed a wide range of topics - from community programs they participate in, events they run to bring in foot traffic, how they create community among their peers, and how they engage customers through social media. They even got into a discussion about which tools are most helpful, citing Canva and Square Marketing as two that stand out.

 

The panelists, who all have different types of businesses, all agreed that providing a consistent and high-quality product or service is key to fostering customer loyalty. A big part of consistency is holding customers accountable and being very clear about what service/product you provide and what your customer can expect from you. 

 

During the Q&A a question was asked about whether or not it's important for Jon Sciabica to show how his olive oil gets from the field to the bottle. All panelists agreed that customers love getting the "behind the scenes" view, and one great place to do that is through social media.  

 

Some resources the panelist cite that have helped them: 

  • Local young professionals groups - Turlock Young Professionals
  • Small business development center - downtown Modesto office
  • Finding a local accountant if numbers aren't your strength 
  • Hiring someone to build your website
  • Canva.com - a tool for creating images, useful for social media posts 
  • Square Marketing - an easy way to get started
  • For makers/crafters: Mod Shop
  • Farmers markets are a great place to start out and test the waters 
  • Instagram and Facebook analytics to help gauge when is best to post/what to post/etc. (p.s. also check out these community resources: Webinar on Content Marketing Strategy, Free Marketing Resources, and Q&A with Instagram Product Manager
  • Leveraging Facebook Live videos to stay top of mind for customers

 

About the Panelists

 

Jessica Chang Irish - Jessica Chang Consulting - @jesschang
Jessica Chang Irish is the owner of Jessica Chang Consulting and helps business owners and executives build confidence in their public and on-camera speaking skills. She's an Emmy-award winning news reporter and producer with more than a decade of experience in TV news reporting and production. She also has seven years of experience in marketing and outreach for universities and community organizations. Jessica serves as a marketing consultant for the Valley Sierra Small Business Development Center and communications and brand manager for Center for Human Services, as well as a board member for Turlock Young Professionals and the Turlock Certified Farmers Market.

 

Jonathan Sciabica - Sciabica’s California Olive Oil - @sciabica1936
Jonathan is a 4th generation olive oil producer at Sciabica's California Olive Oil, the oldest mill in California. After attending Bellarmine College Preparatory and Cal Poly San Luis Obispo (Ag-Business) he joined the family business in 2002. He’s currently running Sciabica's with his father (Nick) and uncle (Daniel), heading the sales and marketing. He particularly enjoys product development and graphic design - handling all of the development and design of Sciabica's packaging, website (SunshineInABottle.com) and marketing materials.

 

Jennifer Roots-Sousa - Rustic Roots - @Rusticrootsinc
Like many kids, Jenny thought she was going to be an artist when she grew up. She was working at a local restaurant when she started to notice that rustic furniture was becoming quite the new trend. After hearing the old quote from her grandfather "Find something you love to do and then find a way to make money doing it!" she decided to take that great advice and take a risk with only three thousand dollars to her name. Jenny became an Artist but not in the traditional, conventional way she had imagined as a kid. After putting herself through Contractors School, her store Rustic Roots was born - where she sells unique, hand-painted furniture items and offers painting classes. She learned to combine painting and building to create products with rustic elegance and quality.

 

Tenille Rollins - Nirvana Face & Body
Tenille Rollins is a tenacious business woman, a dedicated wife, a mother of two amazing girls, and the owner of Nirvana Face & Body. Tenille has been an esthetician for over twelve years making her a master at her craft. She started her business working out of one small room and building into a very specialized holistic skin spa. She's owned Nirvana Face & Body for over five years and it now encompasses 10 working estheticians. Tenille takes a holistic approach to treating the skin and making permanent change for her clients. Tenille strives to make Nirvana Face & Body a spa that performs the most beneficial facial services, provide retail products above standard, and gives exceptional customer service.

 

Photos from the Event

 

These are just a few pictures of the event, enjoy! 

 

The panel in actionThe panel in actionGoodie bags for all!Goodie bags for all! 

 

Some of Sciabica's selectionSome of Sciabica's selection

 

 

Tenille (panelist) enjoying the networking!Tenille (panelist) enjoying the networking!

 

 

Jessica (panelist) and a guestJessica (panelist) and a guest

 

 

Jenny (panelist) and her crewJenny (panelist) and her crew

 

 

Panelists with moderator, Caty KobePanelists with moderator, Caty Kobe

 @Chad helping pair Bobbi's contactless & chip reader@Chad helping pair Bobbi's contactless & chip readerSciabica's Craig offering olive oil tastingSciabica's Craig offering olive oil tasting

 

If you were at the event, thank you for coming! If you’re catching up now, feel free to continue the conversation here - which panelist answers do you agree with? Do you have any tips of your own to share about how your local community supports your business and vice versa?

 

Event video coming soon! 

 

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