Since American Express launched Small Business Saturday in 2010, it’s mantra “Shop Small” has become the rallying cry to encourage the support of local small businesses in communities across the nation.
According to the Shop Small website, a 2017 survey found that 90 percent of consumers believe Small Business Saturday has a positive impact on their community.
With this year’s Small Business Saturday approaching on November 24, 2018, are you prepared to seize the momentum and boost your business?
Fortunately, there’s still time—even if you haven’t given it much thought yet.
5 Tips for Making Small Business Saturday a Success for Your Business
- Make your place of business a Small Business Saturday destination.
Give consumers some extra incentive to stop by your location on Small Business Saturday. Some ideas to make your store or office a Small Business Saturday destination include:
- Provide free refreshments.
- Hold prize drawings.
- Offer a Small Business Saturday only special promotional offer.
- Extend your hours to accommodate shoppers’ busy schedules.
- Distribute Shop Small merchandise (tote bags, balloons, posters, and other items) at your location. (Note that American Express has limited supplies, so the sooner you apply online to request them the better.)
- Partner with other local businesses in your community.
When you and the other local businesses in your town support each other by cross-promoting the diversity of offerings in your business community, everyone wins. Consider sharing other businesses’ marketing materials at your location, and tell customers about the different stores near you—with the understanding, of course, that they’ll do the same for you.
- Power up your social media efforts.
Social media is a powerful medium for generating buzz about Small Business Saturday and promoting what you and the rest of your business community have planned for that day. If you’re on Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn, use the hashtag #shopsmall in your updates to encourage engagement from other small businesses and people who are actively seeking out to support small businesses on Small Business Saturday. To boost the number of people who see your posts, consider spending some dollars on social media advertising in the weeks leading up to Small Business Saturday. For example, Facebook’s advertising options (ads and promoted posts) can expand your reach significantly—to a very targeted audience—for a very minimal investment.
- Use the free marketing templates available on the Shop Small website.
American Express offers free Shop Small and Small Business Saturday templates that you can customize and download for use on your website, email marketing messages, social media, and in your print marketing efforts.
Some examples of what’s available there include:
- Website badges
- Email template
- Email header
- Shop Small video (10 seconds)
- Social media profile and cover images
- Social media post content and images
- Event flyer
- Ask a SCORE mentor for guidance and ideas.
SCORE mentors have experience in all aspects of running a business, and we’re here as a resource to help you formulate your marketing and sales plans. Contact us today as you develop your Small Business Saturday ideas.