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American Express Partners with Facebook on the Big Break for Small Business Contest

By Guest Blogger, Donna DeClemente, Donna's Promo Talk

Here's a great opportunity for all you small business owners. American Express Open has partnered with Facebook on a contest just for you.

Amex_bigbreak_logo The "Facebook Big Break for Small Business" contest aims to help give small businesses a "Big Break" by utilizing Facebook to connect and engage with customers. American Express Open will be giving 5 small business owners the ultimate "Big Break" which is an all-expense-paid trip to Facebook headquarters in Palo Alto, Calif., for a two-day, one-on-one business make-over and a $20,000 cash prize to help grow their business with social media.

Amex-Facebook To enter you need to visit the American Express Open Facebook page. They have a video visitors can view to help give them ideas and understand what the contest is all about. There are a three questions that need to be answered on the submission form which are:

  • What makes you excited to come to work everyday?
  • How do you envision Facebook impacting your business?
  • How could a big break help your business?

Next step is uploading 3 photos that show the business along with it's owner and staff. An optional video can also be submitted, however, Amex states that it will not impact the judging. All eligible entries will receive $50 in free Facebook advertising to help them reach some customers. So what do you have to lose?

Entries will be judged by a panel of experts including Guy Kawasaki of Alltop and John Battelle of Federated Media. Ten semifinalists will compete in a final round of judging, where Open Facebook fans will be asked to vote for their five favorite small businesses. The 10 runners-up will win $2,500 in Facebook advertising to help them target and acquire new potential customers.

For those that don't have a small business, but know of one that should enter, Amex has provided some easy sharing tools. They can send a Facebook Message to up to 20 of their friends that includes a link to the contest page. Or,  the message can be emailed to someone. Plus, if someone doesn't have the business owner's email or is not a Facebook friend, they can download and print out a flyer to drop off at the business.

I just read some recent stats from eMarketer that state that small businesses are continuing to increase their use of social media marketing. They pulled this data from the spring 2011 edition of the American Express OPEN “Small Business Monitor”. It states that more than a third (35%) of US small businesses reported using online social networking for marketing, up from 15% in fall 2009. In addition, 12% of respondents were using blogs as a social tactic, nearly double the figure from fall 2009. Facebook is the most popular social media site for small-business owners, according to the survey.

Julie Fajgenbaum, vice president, brand and customer marketing, American Express Open stated "It's critical that business owners understand these new channels and platforms, which is why we are collaborating with Facebook to educate on the benefits of engaging customers through social media and provide real, tangible tips on how to do it effectively." I can't agree with Julie more.


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