On Small Business Saturday, consumers shop local in a big way– American Express estimates more than 73.9 million people will spend around $14 billion this year.
As a small business owner, you shouldn’t live and die by that one day alone. With a little leg work, you can leverage your small business status, increase your number of committed customers, and build strong sales all year long.
- Use Social Media to Personalize the Customer Experience: Customers love a personalized shopping experience. When crafting your social media strategy, take advantage of the data available on social media, from your followers’ location to their ages and interests, to personalize their experience. Wow them during the holidays, and keep in touch with a consistent message to drive repeat business during the rest of the year.
- Give Your Business a Face: Bigger isn’t always better. As a small business owner, you’re more attentive to your clients’ needs and more knowledgeable about your industry. It’s also more likely that you interact with your clients time after time. Use this relationship to build loyalty – both to your brand and to you as a member of the community. Take an active role in presenting yourself to the community. You’ll draw in customers that are actively seeking out small businesses to patronize.
- Provide Great Customer Service on Social Media: No sales funnel is complete without the amazing customer service needed to drive repeat business and referrals after the holidays. Don’t think that you’re limited to launching promotions and facilitating customer interactions on social media. Social media is a great tool to respond quickly to questions and complaints. Don’t stop at tracking mentions of your business. Track keywords and hashtags as well to find opportunities to respond to even more customers.
- Give Back: Your brand recognition can be boosted by tapping into your community ties. Make sure that you’re doing more than taking; give back too. Support local organizations through sponsorship, volunteering, or donation. Even better, poll your customers to understand how they think you should give back. This shows you’re more than just a business. You’re a part of their community.
- Small Businesses Stick Together: There’s power in numbers! Depending on your business, a farmer’s market, fair, or association can build an on-going community presence for your business. Your Chamber of Commerce is a great place to start your search for these events. Can’t find a fit? Start something! This type of leadership and dedication will help you develop more ties to the community and benefit directly from the results.
I know being a small business owner keeps you busy year-round. But, incorporating these five action items into your routine will help you achieve sales success on Small Business Saturday and beyond.