Small Business Saturday, which happens every year between Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving) and Cyber Monday, is one of the busiest shopping days of the year. Many people choose to show their support for their local businesses on this day. If handled correctly, Small Business Saturday (or SBS) can be a great way to get new customers and encourage previous customers to do their holiday shopping with you.
Come Up with an Offer
While this isn’t mandatory, it’s a smart move. People already have their attention on small businesses, thanks to the buzz surrounding SBS. A special offer gives them a reason to come into your particular small business as opposed to one that belongs to your competitors.
Offers can be a discount (percent off, dollar amount off, or doorbuster specials), or a contest/giveaway. Or you can think outside the box. What about free coffee for anyone who shops on SBS? Or maybe a free small stocking stuffer, or free gift wrapping of any items purchased in store? Think about the customers you’re trying to attract and what is likely to be attractive to them.
Spread the Word
Once you’ve come up with an offer (or if you decide to skip that step), it’s time to promote SBS in every way that you can. American Express, the company who created Small Business Saturday, has printable signage, email templates, and other tools specifically designed to help you with promotion. (You don’t have to be an American Express merchant, but if you are you’ll have access to more promotional tools, like inclusion in their online map.)
You’ll also want to create some promotions to spread the word about your individual offer. These could include:
- Signs in front of the store or on the windows
- Printed flyers
- Emails to your contact list
- Social media posts
- And more!
Make sure you’re promoting both offline and online to reach a wider potential customer base.
Encourage your loyal customers to spread the word, too. You can ask them to use the #shopsmall hashtag when they talk about your offer on social media, which will make those posts appear on the main SBS social media feeds.
The media buzz around Small Business Saturday can be a huge aid in promoting your own business, as long as you leverage it correctly. Use the tools available for you, but don’t be afraid to put your own creative spin on your promotion.