Smithfield’s Chicken ‘N Bar-B-Q has a 40-year history in serving the finest fried chicken and Eastern North Carolina-style BBQ. With more than 30 locations, Smithfield’s Chicken ‘N Bar-B-Q is a popular restaurant has been using social media for three years now.  What they like most about using social media is the ability to easily connect with and talk to their customers.

Social media allows businesses, like Smithfield’s Chicken ‘N Bar B Q, the opportunity to make connections to people they wouldn’t ordinarily talk to.  A few years ago in July, a connection was made with someone on active duty in the military serving in Iraq.  Smithfield’s Chicken ‘N Bar B Q took the opportunity to send food to their troop as part of their July 4th celebration of giving back to the community.

This past Valentine’s Day, not normally a holiday associated with Smithfield’s Chicken ‘N Bar B Q, they set up a contest for customer’s to show their love of BBQ with a photo.  Because of Facebook’s contest rules where you need a third party app to manage the contest, SCNB used their website and email to creatively get around those rules.  They collected customer photos via email and posted the most interesting images on their Facebook page.  There was even a prize offered for the most creative.

An advertising company approached Smithfield’s Chicken ‘N Bar B Q a couple years ago with a proposal for advertising on the backs of grocery store register tapes.  Marketing posed the question on Facebook to their fans asking if they use the coupons on the backs of register tapes.  Out of 60 responses, 50 people said no they don’t.  Because of social media, they saved $2500 on unnecessary advertising.

Staying connected and listening to customers is one of the reasons why Smithfield’s Chicken ‘N Bar B Q uses social media as part of their overall marketing plan.