Small Business Saturday has big ideas as the Saturday coming after Thanksgiving Day is trying to encourage residents to shop locally and boost local economy.
This year, the event will take place on November 26 and will mark the sixth time that Small Business Saturday has taken place. The idea was initiated and first took place in 2010.
Reports show that last year about 95 million customers went out and bought or spent $16.2 billion in small, local restaurants and retailers.
As both neighborhoods, shoppers, and also businesses have embraced the idea, Small Business Saturday has come to be considered an American Institution.
Part of the event’s success could also come to be attributed to its Neighborhood Champion program.
The Neighborhood Champions have become quite vital to the event in general. They are in charge of quite a number of activities and actions, including the organization of special neighborhood events.
They are also in charge of encouraging local businesses to participate in the Small Business Day. As they also motivate the buyers to choose local shops and restaurants, these last two activities are quite vital for the success of the event.
The founding partner of Small Business Saturday, the American Express released some of last and this year’s estimates.
According to American Express Vice President, Amy Marino, last year, over 4,100 neighborhoods participated in the Neighborhood Champion program alone.
Through them, more than 1.3 million small, local businesses spread throughout all the 50 states were able to participate in the event.
Marino also stated that this year, on November 26, the number of participants will be even higher.
As any business or neighborhood group can join the Champions program, the American Express offers them merchandise kits.
These kits should help the individual or organizations in the engaging, exciting or sprucing up the small businesses.
This year, the company has also launched a Shop Small Studio which will allow small businesses the chance to create individual kits.
These customized marketing materials may include website badges, event posters and flyers, and social media assets besides the already available stickers, buttons, and balloons.
In October, the American Express held a series of Small Business Saturday Boot Camps that were meant to help Neighborhood Champions from New York, San Francisco, and Chicago.
Chicago is amongst the Small Business most active and implicated cities, even a leader of sorts. Over the years, individual Chicago neighborhoods have initiated a wide variety of activities.
This year, they will be coming up with a new idea in the form of their Neighborhood Rewards Program. The ambitious campaign will be launched by the city and will seek to unify and offer an incentive for a citywide small business shopping.
It will include any shoppers that spend $300 or more in the November 26 to December 24 timespan in three or more small local businesses in any retail shopping district.
As all the city’s districts will be included, the respective buyers may receive a $50 gift card that can be used at any Small Business Saturday participant.
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