Every year, the day after Black Friday, we celebrate small businesses. Small Business Saturday encourages people to holiday shop in their favorite local mom and pop shops. Cox supports small businesses in Southern Arizona and encourages them to take part in the national movement every year. Here are some tips on how to prepare yourself for this year’s Small Business Saturday.
Plan an event. Bring a large crowd to your store by hosting an event there. Whether it’s a shop and sip happy hour or a kid-friendly event, be sure to keep your audience in mind.
Extend your hours. Staying open later makes it easier for people to come in after their other obligations. Be sure to market your extended hours ahead of time to make it known.
Partner up. Partner with nearby businesses and cross promote to drive more business to your location. This is a great way to build relationships with businesses nearby who you can continue working with in the future.
Reward your customers. Reward the customers that regularly shop with you. For example, send an email to past customers with an exclusive coupon. This will encourage them to come and shop with you on Small Business Saturday.
Spread the word. Tell everyone, from customers to people on the street, about Small Business Saturday. Spreading the word is easy and a virtually free way of getting the message out. Many people love to support local business, but don’t know about this special day.
Turn to social media. Head to social media to promote your sales. Consider setting aside a small budget to help promote your social media posts on Facebook and Instagram to reach your audience.
Stock up. Stock up on your most popular items. The last thing you’ll want to happen is run out of an item that people are going to want to purchase. Use last year as a baseline for what to stock up on this year.
Offer “Doorbuster” sales. Steal a page right out of the Black Friday playbook and offer doorbuster deals. Who knows, you may even generate a line waiting to come in and shop your sales!
Reach out to local news. Call down to your local news organizations and simply let them know about your event or special promotion. They may be able to give a shout out or post the information online.
Utilize free resources. American Express offers free resources each year to encourage small businesses to take part in Small Business Saturday. They offer signs, email templates, posters and other free marketing materials.
Lisa Lovallo is the Southern Arizona market vice president for Cox Communications.