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      How social media is helping local businesses grow

      Local businesses nationwide have been using social media as a new way to advertise and promote their company.

      Whether it is through places like Facebook or Twitter, social media sites have quickly become a new outlet for companies to spread the word of their services.

      Chop Chop owner David Terry says when you run your own business it's not always easy to chat and talk with every customer, but social media provides you that opportunity.

      "In a fast casual restaurant it's hard to really interact with them in a way that we'd like to, and so social media has allowed that additional outlet for a custom experience online for us to communicate with our customers and our customers to communicate with us."

      Chop Chop has more than 800 likes on Facebook and more than 500 followers on Twitter, and Terry says when people check in or tweet about his restaurant that their friends see it too.

      "We're always glad when a customer comes into Chop Chop and then sends out to all their friends that, this is where they're eating or send out a good tweet, but we've also had to respond to some of those customers comments that may be weren't so good, but it was a good opportunity then to get in touch with that customer and to keep that relationship."

      Doing business with a familiar company that you know and trust and then telling your friends about it is another way social media draws people in.

      "Really we want an experience and social media allows that experience for customers."

      Companies can also use the sites as a way to do promotions.

      Not long ago, Chop Chop gave every person that checked in on Facebook got a free egg roll with their meal.

      "When they checked in, they also liked our Facebook page and then they cause our updates and it's really viral, as somebody check's in, all of their friends see it and their friends see it and so it's a great opportunity and it costs nothing."

      Posting job openings is another way Chop Chop uses social media, in fact Terry says the last person they hired applied via Facebook.