This year, Small Business Saturday’s 5th iteration falls on Saturday 2nd December. But you might be wondering why I am telling you now…
This is hot news because you need this precious time to plan and ensure that your local small business does not miss out!
Sceptical? Well, be aware that last year customers spent £717 million on Small Business Saturday alone, a 15% increase from the year before.
The thing is, Small Business Saturday might well seem like yet another awareness day – you know like national snow cone day or national dog day. You could well be right, but this day really is different.
Rally the Troops
Groups of small businesses in an area get together and create an event to behold – an experience what might well be termed a ‘micro moment’. Look at it this way. We can pretty much buy what we want, when we want it. But tell me, when was the last time you got together with your local community for online shopping? Yes, the click can feel special, but once it’s done you move on and forget about the purchase. Go on, tell me I’m right.
Small Business Saturday represents the exact opposite of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. This is the chance for your local small business to shine and inspire! Don’t let people in your community make soulless purchases. Instead, let small Business Saturday begin relationships that may well last for years while uniting as a community together. Foster some excitement for the power of the entrepreneur!
Let me make a confession. When I was really broke I used to browse websites that sold things I fancied and filled my shopping cart. This was before CRMs and all the spyware and cookies gave the game away. I would then abandon the shopping cart and it really felt like I’d been shopping. Go on admit it, the postman has knocked with a parcel from Amazon and you’ve thought: ‘What the bloody hell is that?’
Small Business Saturday puts the fun back into shopping locally and being part of a community. Last weekend I walked through the Lanes in Brighton. What a treat. My senses were bombarded with artisanal, creative, quirky and original shop windows where I would stop and browse. How different from mindlessly scrolling through products. This was an experience, and it really piqued my interest. Brighton is a gold standard, but there are plenty of places all over the UK where communities are keen to promote local produce, local skills or the local atmosphere. Why not adopt this for your local shops?
We need to give people a reason to come out from behind their devices and communicate in the real world. What could be better than doing a bit of Christmas shopping wrapped up in scarves and hats, stopping for some roasted chestnuts, drinking steaming mugs of hot chocolate and being with friends and family?
Community is everything. This morning I went into a local shop and the shopkeeper said, ‘Oh by the way we’ve ordered the almond milk you were looking for on Saturday.’ That’s a personalised experience. That’s something that makes people develop loyalty. It promotes the ‘feel good’ factor.
So what I’m saying is: do not dismiss Small Business Saturday as a bandwagon. Think of it more as a circus that rolls into town and brings excitement with it. The difference is this circus will always be in town, once shoppers know where to go. People want experiences, shopkeepers who know them and make them feel welcome, and experts who can suggest, educate and advise. There are ten weeks to start planning, write copy, design leaflets and get your press releases to business and local press. Now all that’s left is to get out there and build your entrepreneur army!
If you need a team of writers and designers to make your event gain attention then you had better hire them right now. VKN Digital can put your local business on the map. Remember that 2nd December is just around the corner.