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3 Simple Ways to Set Yourself Up for Success on Small Business Saturday®

American Express® founded Small Business Saturday back in 2010 as a way to encourage people across the country to support small, local businesses.

Get your business ready for Small Business Saturday®, the annual holiday shopping tradition. Last year, an estimated 112 million consumers shopped and dined small on Small Business Saturday, and U.S. consumers who shopped in-stores on Small Business Saturday reported spending an estimated total of $15.4 billion at independent retailers and restaurants. [1]

Valpak® and American Express are committed to increasing awareness about the importance of shopping small through Small Business Saturday® on Nov 25, 2017 and all year long. Valpak has been providing affordable and effective direct mail and digital marketing for America’s small businesses for decades and has developed tailored Shop Small marketing solutions.

Small Business Saturday Consumer Impact

The sales that occur the weekend following Thanksgiving—the beginning of the holiday shopping season—represent as much as 30% of annual revenue to some retailers. [2] Two-thirds of the nation’s economic activity is comprised of consumer spending.[3] That’s why the results of Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday are strong indicators of consumer confidence and economic health. And that’s why Small Business Saturday is so important.

Small Business Saturday localizes this effect. When consumers shop locally, their dollars stay in the community rather than moving into the hands of big corporations. For every $100 consumers spend at a locally-owned business, $68 stays in the local economy on average, as opposed to $43 from non-local businesses.[4]

Consumers are becoming more and more aware of the benefits of shopping local and supporting small businesses in their community. Shopping small is about community and support, plus, finding unique items, personal service, and great deals!

Small Business Saturday can make us feel like we’re contributing to a great cause even while we satisfy a shopping goal, whether we purchased a custom-made handbag or lunch and a cold beer at a local brewery.

3 Ways to OWN Your Small Business Saturday

You do not have to be an American Express Card-accepting merchant to participate in Small Business Saturday. American Express Small Business Saturday online support is available to virtually all small businesses, but American Express Card-accepting merchants can receive additional promotional materials and support. Interested in becoming an American Express merchant? You could find a rate that’s right for your business and a faster, easier way to accept the Card. Learn more at OptBlue.com.

1. Begin Early and Educate

Now is the time to put out flyers to share with your customers that educate them about the importance of supporting small, local businesses, not only for economic reasons, but also for community building and strength. Open your customers’ eyes with the following stats:[5]

  • America is home to 29.6 million small businesses.
  • Small businesses employ over 57.9 million people in the U.S.
  • Small businesses make up 99.9% of all U.S. businesses.

2. Plan, Prepare, Partner, Promote

Asking yourself questions like the following will help you visualize how you want your Small Business Saturday to go and get a jump on the process of getting ready:

  • How do you want to make Small Business Saturday unique for your business?
  • Is there another local business you could team up with to generate awareness for each other?
  • If you’re not an American Express merchant, do you want to become one?
  • What do you want to feature on Small Business Saturday? A new product? Inventory you’d like to move?
  • Will you offer refreshments? Holiday gift-wrapping?
  • Will you offer existing customers a special discount on Small Business Saturday? Will you use email or direct mail to get the word out?
  • How will you measure your Small Business Saturday success?

3. Tell Your People to Tell Their People

No one knows your customers like you do. You know how to speak their language. Use that knowledge to reach out to them and invite them to join you on Small Business Saturday and to bring their friends along. Pull out all the stops.

  • Use your email and direct mail lists and send invites.
  • Hand out flyers.
  • Shout it out on social media.
  • Display some posters.

This is YOUR day. Take advantage of all the free marketing materials available to you from American Express, marketing products from Valpak, and the best of Small Business Saturday on Nov 25, 2017.

[1] The statistic cited is an estimate based on projections from a nationally representative sample of adult consumers as reported in the 2016 Small Business Saturday Consumer Insights Survey commissioned by Amex and NFIB. The Survey gathered self-reported data and does not reflect actual receipts or sales.

[2] NRF, Holiday Trends and Expectations, 2015

[3] http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-economy-idUSKBN13O1NE

[4] Grasshopper Resources, Small Business Saturday Statistics, 2015

[5] Small Business Administration, Small Business Profiles for the States and Territories, 2017

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