Digitalizing MSMEs was the highlight of Go Negosyo’s latest entrepreneur mentoring roadshow 3M on Wheels, which was held last November 19 at the Ayala Fairview Terraces in Quezon City. Social media influencers and content creators were on hand to share tips for successful online brand promotion with the hundreds of active and aspiring entrepreneurs in attendance.
“We believe that MSMEs will benefit the most from digitalization. Platforms like Lazada have proven to be a natural fit for these small entrepreneurs because they eliminate so many barriers for them in business,” said Go Negosyo founder Joey Concepcion. He added that social media has even made it possible for entrepreneurs to become their own influencers and promote their brands online. “The path to greater inclusivity is to enhance digitalization in the Philippines,” he said.
One of the highlights of the show was the participation of the highest-ranking executive of online shopping giant Lazada. James Z. Dong, Lazada Group CEO noted how the pandemic has changed consumer behavior in the country, and assured the audience that Lazada will always be present to help active and aspiring entrepreneurs do business.
“Think of us as a business that empowers other businesses,” he said. He explained that businesses who use the platform automatically get the capabilities of Lazada, such as its national distribution network, payment system, logistics system, customer service, and fulfillment.
Social media influencers and digital content creators EdelynGonzalvo, Stefanie Lois Garcia, Namy Ulenka, and AynaCristobal shared their experiences as well as some tips about marketing products on social media during a panel discussion at the event. All but one of the panelists started recently, and began as amateurs on social media. They shared with host and The Famous Simply Foods CEO Michael Angelo Lobrin that platforms like FB reels and Tiktok are a tremendous help because they are effective in promoting even non-celebrities. They shared several elements that contributed to their success as online entrepreneurs, namely patience, goal-setting, consistency, discipline, aggressive promotion, continuous learning, having a mentor, an appetite for risk, and the right mindset.
Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte graced the event and expressed her support for the city’s MSMEs. “Ito po ang diwang pagbabayanihan,” she told the audience. She shared that the city is also doing its share in helping its MSMEs through its Pangkabuhayan QC program and the 100 percent digitalization of its business permit processing. In addition, she announced the offering of Php1 million in seed capital to tech startups based in Quezon City.
Pampanga Second District Rep. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo also sent her message of support, expressing pride in how Go Negosyo, which began during her term as President, has grown.
“Go Negosyo programs, especially the Kapatid Mentor ME and [3M on Wheels] are most relevant now for entrepreneurs as our country strives to get our economy back in shape after Covid and through the global economic impact of the Russia crisis,” she said. “Entrepreneurship is our best strategy for a post-pandemic economic recovery and eventually for winning the war against poverty.”
3M on Wheels is Go Negosyo’s highly successful on-ground, nationwide program for active and aspiring entrepreneurs. “3M” stands for Mentorship, Money, and Market, and reflects the wider scope of entrepreneurship assistance it now offers entrepreneurs.
During the event, there was one-on-one coaching of entrepreneurs by mentors coming from different industries. Finance service providers were on hand to introduce entrepreneurs to facilities for small-business lending, while specialists in different marketing channels were on hand to introduce solutions that cover everything from establishing physical stores, digital platforms, logistics solutions, and digital payment platforms.