#LoveLocal: Facebook supports local SMBs in the MENA region
In a recent announcement made by Facebook, the social networking company reports the launch of its new #LoveLocal campaign, supporting local small and medium businesses (SMBs) in the MENA region.
The campaign comes as part of the company’s efforts to support those hit hardest by the impact of COVID-19. #LoveLocal aims to support the digital transformation journey for SMBs and to grow their business. The campaign also identifies resources available for SMBs to drive economic recovery, as well as provide SMBs with a voice to generate consumer demand.
Other support Facebook aims to provide include, access to the Middle East and North Africa SMB Training Hub. The hub has 40 free online webinars available for businesses in order to help them better understand digital tools.
In an ongoing collaboration with the World Bank and Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), Facebook is conducting a ‘Future of Business Survey’, which monitors the impact of COVID-19.
“According to the report, in the MENA region, 70% of businesses reported reduced sales, with around 40% reducing their workforce in response to the pandemic,” commented Ramez Shehadi, Managing Director for Middle East & North Africa, Facebook.
“Small businesses are the backbone of any economy and pillars of their local communities. In these challenging times, SMBs need support from community members across the region. Our #LoveLocal campaign is aimed at supporting local businesses and driving communities towards greater engagement with them in any effort to bring sustenance and growth for SMBs now, and on the road ahead.” he said.
While digital transofrmation isn't new to industries with many already digitalising prior to COVID-19, the pandemic has accelerated the adoption, which can be seen in Facebook’s survey.
As a result the SMB Training Hub, will provide these growing digital businesses with access to Facebook’s business Resource Hub, which includes programs such as ‘How to grow your online store with social media’ or ‘Keys to a successful digital transformation.’
“It is now clear that a key way for SMBs to survive the pandemic is to pivot to digital in order to access a wider radius of consumers beyond their traditional physical reach. Entrepreneurs can register for free online courses to receive insights on Facebook’s services and tools that can help them get online, boost leads and grow online commercial engagement,” added Shehadi.
“Our online resources and tools can help small business owners with tips, training and much more to learn, live and work more readily and effectively in the digital world,” concluded Shehadi.
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