How America Works: Ben Franklin Meets Facebook at Good Time Stove Co

Ben Franklin was known for many things, including his highly social nature and his aptitude for inventing. Given his nature, it’s not hard to imagine Franklin thinking of the idea for Facebook if the internet existed in the mid 1700s. It’s also probably safe to say that he would love seeing his Franklin stove designs (still found in thousands of antique stoves) being sold over the internet.

Good Time Stove Company in Goshen, Massachusetts has been selling these stoves for 40 years, morphing from a tiny homespun company to an internet success story. In fact, the internet and Facebook significantly increased company sales. This success also came with its risks– last year hackers took down the company’s site for six weeks and the phones stopped ringing.

Richard Richardson and his daughter Sara the Stove Princess deliver some critical advice to small business owners about using the internet and social media, including:

  • Hire web professionals to manage your site
  • Make certain that you are using a quality hosting source and have backup protection
  • Know all of your login and password information yourself in the event of a site outage

Business is back to normal now and Richard is focused on giving back to his community as a way of saying thanks for kickstarting his business decades ago.

This is another segment in CareerFuel’s “How America Works” series.

Videography by James K. Blake III

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