In 2015 most people have become accustomed to using social media. For many it’s an easy and fun way to stay in contact with friends and family, post photos of children and stay up to date on current events. Companies are using social media to brand their businesses and each day it proves to be effective! Each year more digital applications are introduced to mold social media in an effort to meet changing needs.
Social media can be used for more than individuals and businesses, it can also be used to unite and promote neighborhoods. There’s no arguing that the landscape of the American neighborhood has changed drastically over the past 60 years. Neighborhoods like Kaisertown are now faced with the challenge of maintaining the history and nostalgia of the past while adapting to modern issues.
One way this adaptation can be achieved is through a unification of neighborhood stakeholders via social media. An advantage of social media is that events play out real time. If there is an emergency, safety issue or natural disaster- residents can be reached right away, which is a huge advantage over traditional media outlets. Beyond using social media for safety, it can be used for general communication- think a modern day billboard. Missing pets, garage sales and various local services can be discussed in a central location.
The potential of social media continues to expand when applied to local businesses. Sales, weekly specials, hours of operation, contact information, new products, class offerings, appointment times, reservations and promotions can all be targeting to neighborhood residents who are most likely to be customers. This creates a synergy between the businesses offering complementary goods and unites the businesses to create a strong foundation for the neighborhood.
Social media can take many forms with the best known platform being Facebook. This can connect people on an individual level by “friending” them, but it can also be used to form private groups based on topic or to “like” businesses of interest. Posters to Facebook are able to add video, text or photographs which will appear on individual timelines. Are you already on Facebook? Here’s a list of Kaisertown businesses and groups to get you started! Just type the name in the search bar and click “like”.
Guzzo’s Hot Spot
Kasiertown Crafts & Gifts
Lucky’s Texas Red Hots
K Sister’s Authentic Pierogi
Other Facebook Groups
St. Casimir Casimir Church
Kaisertown Buffalo (Blog)
I’m From Kaisertown and Proud of It
Beggar’s Night in Kaisertown
Instagram is another platform that has become wildly popular in recent years. This allows poster to add pictures with captions and is driven only by photographs and video, making it the most visual application. Instagram is a fantastic way for businesses to promote new products or specials. For example, if a shop is selling a Kaisertown t-shirt, they can post to Instagram and all followers of that shop will see the new t-shirt for sale instantaneously. This can also be effective for restaurants when running food or drink specials. The old adage “A picture’s worth a thousand words” is the concept that Instagram is built around and it is extremely effective in increasing sales when used properly. Another benefit to Instagram is the ability to hashtag to attract desired followers. In the search bar look for:
#kaisertown #ktown #ktownbuff #supportkaisertown #shopkaisertown #kaisertownliving #dogsofkaisertown #clintonst You‘ll be able to view photos that Kaisertowners have posted and have fun tagging photos of your own.
You can also search for @Ktowncraftandgift and @ktownbuff -local handles already using Instagram.
Twitter is similar to Instagram in that it can be searched with hashtags and keywords. Text is limited to 140 characters which makes messages short and direct. It can be used to post links and photos and is used my many to receive real time updates on news and current events. Wieche’c Lounge does a great job of utilizing twitter to post their daily specials. Follow them at @wiechecs for daily information.
NextDoor is a newer form of social media which helps develop virtual neighborhoods based upon your real address. As I write this, Kaisertown has 36 members registered to NextDoor. This website is used by the Buffalo Police Department to provide updates to citizens on local issues which may affect your area. The notifications can be sent directly to your email after you register, do it’s not necessary to log on to the site in order to receive updates. The site can also be used to communicate with neighbors directly. Currently there’s an update about a sink hole near Cable and Griswold. Neighbors can introduce themselves and create posts that pertain to the neighborhood. It’s a wonderful format to open the lines of communication, whether it be general conversation about the neighborhood or specific issues affecting all residents.
As I write this here are some things I found about Kaisertown via social media:
• During the November storm the Kaisertown Coalition issued updates on current conditions, snow removal and driving bans. Currently only 210 people follow the Kaisertown Coalition Facebook page. A larger group of followers could have allowed neighbors to see if anyone needed assistance with snow removal, food or medication.
• Weichec’s Lounge updates their daily specials on Facebook and Twitter every day. As I write this, I know their soup specials are Chicken Noodle, Cream of Mushroom, Clam Chowder and Seafood Gumbo.
• Kasiertown Crafts & Gifts will hem any pair of pants or jeans for only $6. For those of you who have had clothing tailored at a dry cleaners or tailor- you know what a good deal this is!
Beyond supporting existing businesses in Kaisertown, social media offers residents an opportunity to make improvements and suggestions. The Kaisertown Coalition currently exists as an open forum to meet and discuss the neighborhood. Maybe you can’t attend meetings, but have ideas. Social media can give residents a platform to make suggestions and have others comment and feed off of original posts. Social media also allows posters to take their time in responding, allowing for careful consideration and thoughtfulness while formulating responses to others suggestions. Perhaps you heard something at a Kaisertown Coalition meeting that you want to discuss further or want more input on, or maybe you don’t feel comfortable speaking in front of a group. Social media can help! It can also be utilized to promote events at local churches, fundraisers, dances, craft shows and other events.
The area that you choose to live in is inevitably a quality of life issue. It is each person’s responsibility to work towards the betterment of our neighborhood. Please consider taking the time to participate and foster growth of the Kaisertown neighborhood and its businesses. It only takes a moment to like or share a post and spread the word about our community and all it has to offer.
**If you are a business who has a social media page not mentioned in this article, please email your information to the East Clinton Shopper. We hope to start a social media directory which would be housed on the Kaisertown Coalition Facebook Page to help in promoting Kaisertown and all its businesses. The list above is not meant to be inclusive of all businesses, it is merely a sampling that was found during an initial search. If you aren’t using social media and want help setting up an account and learning the basics, please email this request to the East Clinton Shopper.**