A restaurant owner from Lumberton, N.C., was looking for ways to improve customer service.
A music store owner from Fayetteville, N.C., found some useful ideas to aid marketing research.
A home health care provider said she found a breakthrough marketing idea.
An entrepreneur from Lumberton wants to open a business and was looking for effective, efficient marketing ideas.
These business people joined more than 100 others on February 25 at UNC Pembroke’s Entrepreneurial Summit on “Guerrilla Marketing.” Sponsored by UNCP’s Thomas Family Center for Entrepreneurship (TPCE), the summit provided marketing ideas and concepts for new and start-up businesses.
Jim Thomas, CEO of a Los Angeles-based commercial real estate company and TPCE’s founder, attended the summit.
“This is an exciting event for the Thomas Family Center,” Thomas said. “I am an entrepreneur who started three businesses from scratch, so I can relate to the experience. “I was fortunate enough to be successful, but I always wondered how much more effective I could have been if I had training in entrepreneurship,” Thomas continued.
“When UNCP gave me the opportunity to start this center, I grabbed on to it immediately,” he said. “I hope that we are having an impact on the local community.”
Located in COMtech, the Thomas Family Center for Entrepreneurship has two missions: first, it builds undergraduate and graduate academic programs in entrepreneurship, and second, it consults with small and start-up businesses.
“Guerrilla Marketing” is an integrated and inclusive idea, said Nick Arena, CEO of COMtech. “As the leader of a small non-profit with a small staff, everything I can learn today will be extremely important.”
Arena, who is also a lecturer in UNCP’s School of Business and former general manager of Acme Electric Company, said the concept of Guerrilla marketing defines marketing as more than advertising and promotions. It is broader in scope and includes research, social and relationship marketing.
“Find a niche and fill it,” Arena said. “Don’t just sell, entertain and connect to your customers on an emotional level.”
Speakers included Dr. John Parnell, UNCP’s Belk Endowed Professor of Business, Bob Moore, director of Robeson Community College’s Small Business Center, Ted Hollingsworth, president of Line Design Graphics in Greensboro, N.C., and Katie Harshberger of the N.C. Small Business and Technology Development Center.
The day was filled with networking, resources and useful ideas that may be turned into successful marketing programs. Donna Lowry, CEO of Caring Touch Home Health Care of Pembroke, was busy taking notes.
For more information on the Thomas Properties Group, visit www.tpgre.com
Updated: Thursday, October 14, 2010
© The University of North Carolina at Pembroke
PO Box 1510 Pembroke, NC 28372-1510 • 910.521.6000