Social Media Communication in the Artisan Economy
Originally Published In
International Journal of Mobile Computing and Multimedia Communications
Social media is a viable marketing and communication option for small businesses as it is cost-effective and easy to use. This study explores how small business owners in the artisan economy utilize social media to communicate with their customers. Artisan small businesses share similarities with small firms in other sectors, but they face unique challenges. Five artisan owners in the United States participated in semistructured interviews answering questions relating to marketing and communication. Artisan owners work in home-based businesses and rarely interact with customers in-person. Social media is a primary communication tool. Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are sites artisan owners utilize to connect with existing and previous customers. Social media is helpful in maintaining customer relationships as well as reaching out to potential clients. When customers interact with artisan owners on social media such as liking and sharing posts, word-of-mouth marketing is created. Social media might help artisan owners increase customer loyalty and sales.