Small Business Monday rolls around in the midst of the holiday season every year to celebrate small local businesses everywhere.
The idea behind Small Business Monday is to encourage people to shop at local businesses, as opposed to big chains and malls. The event was started in 2009 by a group of small business owners who wanted to spread their passion for supporting locally-owned businesses by encouraging other small business owners to participate in the event.
If you’re a small business owner, this is your day to reach more customers than almost any other time of year.
The holiday season is here, and with it comes the opportunity to engage with your customers in a way that will make them want to come back to you again and again. So how do you get started?
First, you need to decide what kind of customer engagement strategy will work best for your business. The most important thing is that it’s something that will help you grow your sales while keeping your marketing costs low.
Then, think about what kind of content will help you do this. You can use social media posts, email blasts, or even popups on your website—but whatever it is, it should be timely and relevant to the holiday season itself (or at least to the time period around Thanksgiving).
The Small Business Saturday initiative, which was proposed by American Express in 2010 and officially recognized by the Senate in 2011, encourages consumers to patronize local small businesses during the holiday season.
In 2013, the Small Business Saturday promotion began in Massachusetts and spread to other states. By 2014, local people had begun celebrating SBS with bake sales and other events. In 2015, American Express promoted the day across social media and encouraged participation from small businesses everywhere. By 2016, SBS had become a tradition for both businesses and shoppers—a way for Americans to celebrate their unique communities.
Small Business Saturday is a day for celebrating small businesses. Wondering what you can do to help promote the event?
1. Let people know of your participation.
SBS is a great opportunity to celebrate small businesses, and we want to be sure you're doing everything in your power to grab the attention of customers who are looking for local businesses.
To take advantage of the hype surrounding Small Business Saturday and encourage local customers to visit your store or visit your eCommerce website, let them know you're a small business celebrating the day. Here are some ways you can do so:
- Write a post on your social media channels highlighting what makes your company unique and why people should care about it.
- Include a coupon code so they can get 20% off their purchase when they shop at your store or website between now and April 10th.
- Let them know that if they want more information about what makes you different from other businesses in town, then please give us a call.
2. Show your commitment to the local community.
The small business owner is an integral part of the community. He or she is there to sell goods and services to the people who live in that community, but also to make it better for them.
Many small businesses have strong community ties that they can leverage for their own benefit. For example, if your business is located in a neighborhood that has a lot of crime, you may want to hold a fundraiser for the local police department. Or perhaps you want to help fund local schools by donating money to their PTA.
If this sounds like something you might want to do, consider sharing these stories with customers both on your website and on your storefront. This will help them see the way that your business fits into the larger picture of things going on in your area.
Small Business Saturday marketing is a great way to show your community that you're in business for them, and not just for the bottom line.
For example, you could highlight your company's latest donation to a local charity or department's visit to a local park for an event.
To attract customers to your Small Business Saturday promotion, appeal to their emotions and show that you’re in business for them. This will motivate the community to support you.
3. Promote a special and exclusive offer
Small Business Saturday is a national day of celebration for small businesses and their customers, who together make up the community. It's a great opportunity to get your product in front of people who are already looking for it.
And if you're already selling online, there's no better time to promote your items than Small Business Saturday!
The best way to get more traffic on the weekend is by putting out an ad on social media or in an email blast. Target your audience and make sure that they know about your promotion before they go to their favorite online shop.
The community wants to celebrate you, so you should celebrate them in the form of a special sale. Not only will it show appreciation for your customers, but it will also attract new customers. You can let everyone know about this upcoming promotion by:
- Sending out an email to all your customers and clients
- Posting on social media
- Creating a coupon code that people can use
- Printing out fliers and handing them out at the front desk
You can include a banner on your store's homepage that announces your Small Business Saturday promotion. For example, you could say “25% OFF SITEWIDE” to let everyone visiting your site (even non-local traffic) know about this special offer.
4. Use multiple strategies for marketing your business.
Marketing your small business is a crucial part of your business plan. In the week leading up to Small Business Saturday, invest even more time in marketing by:
1. Give away free swag to your customers
-You can offer freebies like t-shirts, hats, and coffee mugs to all of your customers on Saturday. The giveaway can be in the form of an email or on social media.
2. Run a sweepstakes
-You could run a sweepstake that’s only open to people who attend Small Business Saturday events or buy products from small businesses on Saturday. You would need to create a Facebook event for this and invite people to attend, so you can collect their email addresses. You would also need a way for people to enter the contest, such as by liking your page or commenting on an article about it.
3. Run a pop-up shop
-If you have space in your store, set up a pop-up shop where people can come in and ask questions about your business or purchase something while they wait for their appointment at the dentist or doctor’s office next door!
Designviva can help you develop a promotional calendar that fits the needs of your business. We’ll take into account all the information you want to include, such as dates, special offers, and where to ask questions or seek help.
5. Hold a contest to find the best fit for your company.
In the past, we've talked about how to get customers to your store on Small Business Saturday. But one of the best ways is contests!
Contests are a great way to get people excited about your business, which will help them remember that you exist when they're online shopping for a new car or going on vacation next weekend. The contest can also help you build brand awareness through social media and other platforms—and that's something that can really help drive sales.
You can announce the contest on social media, and encourage customers to share pictures of their purchases using specific hashtags.
When you're running a promotion, you want to make sure that the prize is something that will be of interest to your customers.
For example, maybe shoppers earn an entry for every $1 they spend at your store. Or maybe they get a coupon for a free drink or dessert after they spend $10 at your store. Whatever it is, make sure it's something that people are likely to care about and want to win!
When you're brainstorming contest ideas, remember to think of ideas that offer easy entry and appeal to most of your audience.
This is especially important when you're trying to attract customers from other businesses. For example, if you're a food truck, you might want to consider offering a contest where people who order from your business get a chance at winning a gift card to the restaurant next door or a free meal for themselves and their friends.
If there are some people who are more interested in entering than others, make sure everyone has an equal shot at winning. This will help increase participation, which means more chances for customers to win!
6. Partner with your next-door neighbour to share ideas and expertise.
By partnering with small businesses in your neighborhood, you can promote your independent business and help other business owners. You can even tie this Small Business Saturday marketing idea with an earlier one: Host a contest!
For example One of the businesses in your area is a bakery and is looking for new customers. They can give away free pastries to people who come in on Small Business Saturday, as long as they tell their friends that they found out about it from [name of local business].
This would be a great way to get people excited about coming into your store on Saturday.
The partnering business and you could offer a giveaway, for instance, that provides winners with a gift card to your business and the partnering company.
For example, you could partner with an online resource that focuses on providing information about social media marketing. One of the ways you can promote this partnership is by offering giveawayss to give away gift cards to your services.
The best way to increase your chances of earning new customers is to help each other reach more shoppers.
The more shoppers you can get on board with your product, the more likely it is that someone will buy from you. With this in mind, we’ve made it easy for you to connect with each other and share resources that can help each other grow your businesses.
7. Customer service should be your top priority.
Even if your team is overwhelmed by the volume of requests for help during SBS, make sure to answer every customer's question.
Thank you for your support! We're so grateful that you chose [company name] to meet your needs, and we're happy to be able to provide the services you need.
As a small business, we're able to create personal ties with our customers in a way that larger companies can't. This means that we have more incentive than ever to know our clients well and be sure we're meeting their needs.
We'd love to answer any questions or concerns you may have about anything from getting started with our services, to what kind of payment options are available for your project.
By showing your appreciation, you will show them how much they mean to you.
If you have a lot of questions and purchases coming from online users, consider investing in a chatbot. A chatbot on Facebook, for example, can provide quick answers to common user questions like shipping times, return policy, and more.
Chatbots are also great for handling customer service queries and even marketing campaigns that rely on customer data. You can keep track of how many people have interacted with your bot and what they're saying about it—and use this information to improve your training process or product development processes.
Make Small Business Saturday a success for your small business.
Designviva understands the importance of Small Business Saturday as we specialize in digital marketing for small-to-midsize businesses and have all the resources you'll need to make your business stand out. We can help you get your brand noticed by providing a complete online presence with social media posts, blog posts, and more.
We know that when you're running a small business, time is precious—and if you want your company's name to be remembered on Black Friday weekend, Designviva has what it takes to make sure your website is ready for it.
We have helped our clients manage more than 8.9 million transactions in the past five years, with strategies like search engine optimization (SEO), social media marketing, and paid advertising.
Contact us today to learn more about growing your small business with our award-winning team!