While millions of shoppers are still running from store to store, sixth Red Bull in hand, taking advantage of the Black Friday sales, Twitter is buzzing with talk of tomorrow’s Small Business Saturday sponsored by American Express.
Launched last year by AmEx in the hopes of developing a stronger connection between consumers and their local mom and pop shops, the new shopping holiday has generated a large deal of support from the online community through sites such as Google+, Facebook and Twitter.
The Small Business Saturday Facebook page has over 2.5 million likes and although #BlackFriday is still the top trending topic on Twitter, the hashtag #SmallBizSaturday has only continued to grow in momentum.
Thanks to American Express’ efforts, it has been reported that small business merchants saw a 28% sales increase from the previous year and according to The Small Business Saturday Consumer Spend Survey 2011, it was shown that 61% of consumers plan to shop at a locally-owned store on November 26, equating to roughly 89 million people.
American Express has urged small business owners to take part in the social media push by encouraging them to:
- Create Facebook Ads — American Express gave away $100 in free Facebook advertising to the first 10,000 business owners to sign up. For small businesses that don’t yet have Facebook pages, American Express provided a tool that to walk them through the Facebook page creation process.
- Video Tools — Google teamed up with American Express to help create personalized business stories on YouTube.
- Twitter Follow Button — Small business owners were shown how to make sure that their business website included a Twitter button to allow people to easily follow then.
- Check YourBuzz — YourBuzz is a service that helps small businesses reach more customers by enabling them to view and respond to customer reviews and online mentions all from one place.
As an avid supporter of small, locally-owned businesses, I am incredibly excited to see the increasing momentum of the newly-created shopping holiday, especially with the help of a well-organized and implemented social media campaign. What are your thoughts on #SmallBizSaturday and its use of social media? Let us know!
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