According to Brian Leftwich, marketing and communications specialist at Mar-Bal Inc., showcasing the role a business plays in its local community is another way to add a personal touch to social media. Leftwich says Mar-Bal’s content doesn’t just cover the company’s products and capabilities; it also gives people an inside look at the staff who make the company what it is.

“We like to show our human side. We’re not always just about the bottom line. We’re not just trying to sell, sell, sell,” says Leftwich. The lighter side of social media content can include anything from a post about a charity Mar-Bal supports to an employee’s work anniversary. Recently, a Mar-Bal employee who had been with the company for 18 years moved to Philadelphia, so the company dedicated several social media posts to acknowledging the employee’s commitment and hard work. Wishing him well publicly, Leftwich says, helps show that Mar-Bal isn’t just an FRP manufacturer – it’s a community of real people who genuinely care about each other.

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During the CAMX 2017 closing luncheon, Brian Leftwich, marketing and communications specialist at Mar-Bal Inc., and Peter Hedger Jr., director of marketing communications at Magnum Venus Products, offered advice on how composites industry businesses can make the most of social media platforms. Photo Credit: CAMX

Hedger adds that in addition to acknowledging current or outgoing employees, social media can also be a powerful tool for recruiting new talent. In an industry with a well-documented workforce dilemma, businesses should leverage social media to attract qualified candidates. “When we have an open position, we post it on our social media accounts,” he says. “And if [people] find that the stuff that you’ve been posting is relevant to them, or they resonate with it, then they’re more likely to go and apply.”

Myers agrees, adding that a critical component of Strongwell’s long-term business strategy is to post content that showcases how Strongwell supports students at all levels, from elementary school to graduate school. Due to Strongwell’s reputation for strong student engagement, the company now frequently receives requests directly from educators to have students tour its facility and learn about pultrusion.

Exposing students to composites manufacturing at a young age can help prepare them for the workforce. “But what that’s also doing is encouraging students who are looking for a career in manufacturing or a career in composites … to come look at Strongwell,” says Myers.