Friday, November 21, 2014

Take Part in Small Business Saturday

Mark your calendars! Small Business Saturday is around the corner! An American shopping day held on the Saturday after Thanksgiving (after Black Friday and before Cyber Monday), this annual event encourages shoppers to do their holiday shopping at small and local businesses — like yours!

Small Business Saturday is anything but small and all about community. It was founded by American Express in 2010 as a way to celebrate and promote the local businesses that make America’s neighborhoods so great. Due to the big response, in 2011 it became recognized as an official shopping holiday.

This year Small Business Saturday falls on November 29th.
No matter what type of business you are in, it pays to participate! Take advantage of this unique opportunity to promote your business and boost sales for your business.

Encourage your customers to Shop Small®.
Encourage your customers to shop your business by creating memorable marketing materials that promote your business and invite customers to Shop Small®.
1.    Extend an invitation. Create an in-store event to attract new and old customers to come to your business. Send out simple customized invitations. You can also promote online by creating an event on Facebook.
2.    Let it fly. Put up a flyer in your store window that reminds shoppers of the date and encourages them to shop local. Not only is it a great way to support your community, but it is also a great way to boost your brand image.
3.    Gear up on giveaways. Plan a special giveaway that reminds your customers to shop at your establishment all year long. Customized 2015 calendars, personalized pens, and custom-printed t-shirts are all great, functional gifts your customers can use every day of the year.
4.    Create special offers. Increase the incentives with special one-day discounts and promotions that will improve foot traffic into your store location. Giving away gift certificates  for every $XXX spent is a smart way to encourage repeat business.
5.    Give them something to smile about. Create even more excitement for your local small business by doing something unique to generate attention. Have a DJ play music in the store. Hire a magician or clown. Serve free coffee in the morning. Display balloons outside your store and give away free cake.
6.    Be social. Social media played a critical role to the first Small Business Saturday’s success. Be sure to follow the movement on Facebook and hashtag #SmallBusinessSaturday on Twitter.

Regardless of whether you are a retail store or restaurant, a beauty salon or a bakery, Small Business Saturday is a fantastic opportunity to reach out and show your community that small businesses matter. The only “wrong” way to participate is to not participate at all.

Be sure, too, to check out the free materials American Express provides to assist you in promoting this fantastic and meaningful event.

Thing big. Shop small.
Have you celebrated Small Business Saturday in the past? Are you planning to participate this year? We want to know! Please tell us your story below.   

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