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#GrowLocal: A Social Media Forum

By Andrew Delmonte, Buffalo First!
Buffalo First! is proud to announce the first in a quarterly series of business workshops aimed at giving local independent proprietors a leg up and a strong network of peers, as a way to promote thriving locally-rooted business districts and hence healthier communities. #GrowLocal: A Social Media Forum brings together some of the best local experts in the possibilities and profitability of using social media professionally, as well as some innovative examples of social media in action from around the region. Oh, and it’s gonna be fun.
Appropriately, #GrowLocal takes place in the collaborative creative media environment of Elmwood Village Creative (EVC), 257 Elmwood Avenue, tomorrow evening, September 8th. The panel discussion begins at 7:30pm, but there will be plenty going on beforehand. At 6:00pm, Lloyd’s Taco Truck is slated to serve dinner on the street in front of EVC, and Chris Smith’s #BuffCashMob will descend on Lloyd’s to show the power of social media to drive local business.
Beginning at 6:30pm, a social hour will take place upstairs at EVC, where attendees and our social media panel can mingle, chow down on Lloyd’s and drink some fresh ginger soda from Flying Bison Brewery. At 7:30pm, a panel discussion will begin, led by EVC member and Buffalo First! Board member Todd Salansky, whose local marketing firm online thymes, llc specializes in advertising, public relations and new media.


“I’m really excited about #GrowLocal,” says Salansky. “We’re bringing in some big names to help the beginner mom and pop shop all the way to well-seasoned experts. It’ll be case-study based, so they’ll share real life strategies that worked and a few that failed. Then they’ll be able to meet in a small group and help adapt the strategy and make it their own.”
The panel includes social media moguls and pioneers from across Western New York: Steve Soroka, Project Manager and Digital Director at Block Club Media, Inc.; Bernice Radle of Buffalo Energy, Inc.; longtime Lifehacker contributor and author of The Complete Android Guide, Kevin Purdy;’s Chris Smith, who recently started the #BuffCashMob Twitter craze, which sends a “cash mob” to a local establishment one day a week; Jeremy White of WGR Radio; and Peter Cimino of Lloyd’s Taco Truck, whose business relies and thrives on social media (see
After the panel discussion, breakout sessions with each panelist will give attendees a chance to delve deeper into each panelist’s expertise, as well as facilitate open discussion about ways to adapt these strategies for other local business.
#GrowLocal is free for Buffalo First! members, and costs $10 for not-yet-members.

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