For many decades, they have been in the sidelines. Often confused to be inferior in respect to their business sense, the roadside stalls selling paan live in anonymity throughout their lives. But there is one paanwala in Surat who deserves a mention when it comes to adapting to new technologies for business. The Ghantawala Pan Bhandar in Surat, Gujarat has recently moved to a new online address at ‘ghantawalapanbhandar.com’ and to top it has also created a Facebook page of its own. ((Shared by YourStory (see last line) ))
The Ghantawala Pan Bhandar Facebook page is brand new with 27 likes and an amazing cover photo. It is fascinating to see all the details filled up right to the phone number. Since it is too early to review the content, I would not be judging it but I can’t help expecting it to rock the space. One of the posts is about demystifying its significant routine of ringing the bell – why the bell is rung at Ghantawala, here’s a screenshot:
Tips for Ghantawala Pan Bhandar Facebook page
Impressed by this move to be a part of social media from a local paan shop, I thought of sharing some tips where the page could do much better and grow a healthy community of fans and also to be able to point out what they are doing right!
1. The page that has been started on 27th June, 2012, has efficiently used the about section which is a must and often forgotten by bigger brands. Facebook’s most coolest feature is the timeline and that should be used to tell the story behind the business, especially since the business started in 2002. The timeline could be added to showcase the entire history about how your business has evolved over time and that would also provide a chance for fans to know more about the business. To know more, how some Indian brands have used it effectively, then click here.
2. Content is the most important aspect in social media and that holds true for Facebook too. Content should be aligned to the objective and it is good to see the page being aware of it. So generating such interesting content will help gain appreciation from fans and make sure that you give a reason for your fans to come back. It makes no sense in talking about Tom Cruise’s birthday or divorce since your fans have better places to read about him!
3. Consistency also matters and being consistent doesn’t mean that you keep on posting content throughout the day. Make sure you respect the space of fans as the network is first for users and then for brands. So make sure to be regular and 3/4 posts a day should be sufficient enough to start with.
4. Social media is about being social with fans so it would be great to introduce your different shops and even the people working with you. Besides this, you can talk about your loyal customers and share their stories as to how they have been coming from ten years to have your paan. Your online behavior should be similar to your offline one. Treat your fans as your potential customers but make sure that you don’t start selling paan on your page!
Social media could be the ultimate game changer for local businesses, not only in India but anywhere in the world. If local businesses in India can take a leaf out from this story and start building their shops on social media then it would surely benefit them. I am sure that in the coming days, the page will score in terms of engagement and I am glad that Ghantawala Pan Bhandar from Surat has been one of the early adopters.
Do let me know your thoughts on this move by a local paan shop and if you are aware of such local stories then we would be more than happy to feature them at our end.