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As a small business owner and marketing professional in the hospitality industry, I believe in the power of innovation to help launch new ideas, improve services and create dynamic products.
There’s never been a better time to start a small business or to grow your business than now. Thanks to the proliferation of digital tools and platforms, businesses of any size now have equitable access and opportunities.
That’s why I’m concerned that small businesses, the largest slice of our national and state economy, weren’t represented at a recent meeting with Rep. Joe Neguse, who was joined by his colleague, Rep. Ken Buck on the House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee, and several large companies to discuss the issue of competition in the online economy. (after all, small businesses account for 99.5% of companies based here in Colorado).
Many of the large companies who were invited to the event voiced concern about the dominance of the world’s largest technology companies, like Apple, Facebook and Google (see the recent press coverage of the event). I understand their concerns, but wanted to share a different perspective on how tech companies and digital platforms enable business growth and innovation. Digital tools democratize business and allow smaller businesses and startups to compete with much larger companies who far outspend and out-staff us.
In launching multiple businesses, I’ve relied heavily on tech platforms throughout the process. At the start, we utilized Google to validate the market need, and find the resources, tools and experts to help us incorporate, learn the basics and implement our go-to market strategy, that included creating our website, Facebook, Instagram, among others.
Today, we rely on the full suite of products – including Google Analytics for tracking marketing and developing online strategies, Google Sheets for project management and even Google Forms for organizing participant registration. We’ve even had representatives from Google, Facebook, GoPro and other tech companies present and share best practices for storytelling and business success at our marketing unconference, CampSight, held every fall in Breckenridge, Colorado.
We’re excited to continue to work with Google, Facebook, Instagram and other forward-looking companies to revolutionize the marketing industry and provide a more personalized customer experience. I agree that we need to carefully consider policies that allow for innovation, business growth and equitable access and opportunities.
I urge our elected officials and representatives to include small business owners in the discussion of our digital economy and consider the fact that small businesses need big tech to survive and thrive now and in the future. Let’s work to find a way to enable fair competition and innovation – for all.
Amy Kemp is the owner of Campsight: www.thecampsight.co