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Facebook And Snail Mail Make Good Bed Fellows

(EMAILWIRE.COM, August 21, 2009 ) Cary, NC—Although Facebook and Snail Mail seem unlikely bed fellows, the combination has proved interesting for North Carolina based Smithfield’s Chicken N Bar-B-Q. Take Will Gibson, a native of Kinston, NC. Now living in Seattle, Washington, Gibson found Smithfield’s Chicken N Bar-B-Q on Facebook and signed up as a fan. Soon after, Gibson brought his fiancé, Scarlett, back home for a visit, and they feasted on Eastern-style bar-b-q the entire week.

After that, Scarlett was hooked too. “When we sat down to plan our wedding, it was her idea to try and replicate as much of that food as we could for our reception dinner, with bar-b-q at the top of the list,” says Gibson. Smithfield’s Chicken N Bar-B-Q obliged via the US Postal Service by shipping 50 pounds of bar-b-q (Gibson admits it may be only 48 pounds by the time the big day arrived), which was vacuum-packed and stored in the freezer until the reception dinner.

Facebook was also the catalyst that brought a soldier a little taste of home. U.S. Navy operations specialist first class James Franks, a Smithfield native currently serving in Afghanistan, found Smithfield’s Chicken N Bar-B-Q’s Facebook page as well. “I posted to make a joke that if they wanted to attempt to send some barbeque to Afghanistan, I would gladly be their guinea pig.”

Bar-b-q wouldn’t make it, but two cases of hush puppy mix would—and did. “On Memorial Day we had a little over 100 people attend our cook-out,” wrote Franks. “Once the word got out about the hush puppies, I literally could not make them fast enough.”

In just six months of offering nationwide shipping, Smithfield’s Chicken N Bar-B-Q has shipped bar-b-q to all fifty states. What started as an idea that would be implemented on an occasional basis is now a full-blown enterprise for Smithfield’s Chicken N Bar-B-Q, as well as a good example of how local businesses are combining social networking sites with conventional practices to increase business. They are currently blending social and traditional media for their fall promotion, “It’s Just Not A Tailgate Without The Bar-B-Q!” The campaign is centered on a micro-site, www.realtailgate.com, where the company can interact with their customers in a number of ways.

Smithfield’s Chicken N Bar-B-Q has a 40-year history serving the finest fried chicken and Eastern-North-Carolina-style Bar-B-Q, made fresh daily from family recipes and served home style in a family-friendly atmosphere. Smithfield’s Chicken‘N Bar-B-Q has over 30 locations in North Carolina as well as an online store where Bar-B-Q can be shipped anywhere in the United States.

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Smithfield's Chicken 'N Bar-B-Q
Richard Averitte
919-656-6987
raveritte@scnbnc.com
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