The media is going to cover Small Business Saturday. It is a holiday weekend. It is new and it is an easy story. That makes it a certainty for local media to cover as a pre-Christmas or post-Black Friday story on Saturday — and probably Sunday, too. This reality presents a unique opportunity for smart small business owners, one they should eagerly seize. But the message they communicate must be clear and strong. It is a message
At Bigger Pie Strategies, we are encouraging small business owners not to say is that business is down, that they are struggling, that they need more business. These statements send the wrong message. Even if that is the case for a business owner, there’s no wisdom in sharing the news.
Consumers want to know that the businesses they choose are successful and strong. If contacted for an interview by the local newspaper or TV station, small business owners should be upbeat, expressing the benefits of shopping at a smaller business than a big-box store or mall. The benefits are numerous, but often lost on consumers. Owners should tell reporters that small businesses know their community’s needs better and are more responsive. The money people spend with a small business goes to right back into the community, supporting the owner, his or her family, and the employees they hire. The message should be brief, not preachy.
“We appreciate that people are investing in their local small business community and expect them to return again and again to the businesses that are their back yard, that are part of their community,” one might say to a reporter.
Small business owners might also talk about something unique or special that they offer that isn’t available at a big box store. The works of local artist and artisans, or explaining a new trend in the local community provide even more evidence of the benefit of using a small business’ services.
Usually, the media often lacks any interest in small businesses. Small Business Saturday is different. But it isn’t just about sales, but marketing, if small businesses handle it correctly.