This year we participated in Small Business Season and invited chamber pros to do the same to support small business.
The campaign has been tremendously successful for the communities that have made it a focus. We’ve seen many creative undertakings and have enjoyed all the posts. Why is it a big deal and how can you get on board before the holiday season is over? Here’s how (and why).
As the holiday shopping season comes to a close, small businesses are the solution for all last-minute shoppers. They can get gifts to loved ones faster than businesses located in other states. As we help with the last-minute marketing push for small business, it’s important to share the “why” behind the chamber effort to support small business.
Feel free to “swipe file” (i.e. copy/save/paste) this messaging and share it on your site, in your newsletter, with media groups, or posting to social media.
Tailor it to what you are doing to help small business and insert the name of your area in some of the spots where “community” is mentioned below.
Support for small business has become very trendy these days. We can thank a global pandemic for helping us to realize the value of what exists in our own backyard–or on “Main Street” in our town.
But shopping small is more than just a cute marketing idea.
There are many reasons to support small business this holiday season and beyond but the average person may not even know why it’s so important to support small business.
Let’s help them understand.
Sure, small businesses don’t have the deep pockets of the big box stores, but there’s a lot more going on in promoting small than that. Small businesses create a ripple effect of development and growth in our community. Here are several reasons why supporting small business is critical to much more than the existence of the business itself.
But first, the stats. Supporting small business feels good but it also fuels growth.
Small Business Statistics and Outlook
The stats are quite clear why it makes sense to support small business. After all…
- $68 out of every $100 spent locally stays in the community.
- 61 million people are employed by small businesses, that’s roughly 47% of US employees. (US Small Business Association)
- 52% of small business owners donate to charity. (Funding Circle)
- 90% of small businesses donate to local causes. (Alignable)
- SCORE has an infographic you can share with these stats and more.
- 46% of businesses have positions they can’t fill. (National Federation of Independent Businesses)
- 55% of women small business owners surveyed by Groupon believe men have an easier time starting a small business.
- 90% of Asian-owned businesses saw a decrease in revenue in 2020. (Fed Small Business)
- 79% of small business owners had outstanding debt in 2020. 44% of them had more than 100,000 in debt. (Fed Small Business)
- 55% of small business owners faced disruptions because of government mandates, while 58% faced disruptions because of changes in demand. (Fed Small Business)
- 56% of small businesses say the amount received from PPP loans was not sufficient for their expenses and needs. (Fundera)
What these stats show is that small business is a big part of our community. Without them, there would be fewer employment opportunities, charitable donations to local charities, and investment in the area. But the second set of stats also points at the struggles this important group has faced over the past couple of years.
We should by no means assume that an outpouring of sentiment and spending on one day or a few weeks will solve all the problems facing small businesses (which is why we advocate for a “small business season“)
But nor do we want to feel hopeless. With our support this critical part of our community can come back stronger than ever.
Here’s why we need them to do it.
Small Business Ripple Effects in Our Community
Supporting small business does more than just help that business owner and their employees. The efforts and support echo through the community in many ways.
Create an Identity for Our Area
Small businesses help us stand out and give flavor to our community. Cities often become known for their small businesses like restaurants, inns, boutiques, small tourism spots, and more. Plus, once an identity is built, it helps attract other businesses that see themselves as a good fit for the flavor and reputation of the area. In that sense, small businesses are also ambassadors and magnets to other businesses and entrepreneurs.
Small business owners who live and work in our area have a fondness for this community. Because of that, they enjoy helping out local groups and schools. They may host a spirit night or help raise funds for a cause or organization. They support local teams and nonprofits through volunteerism and other acts of kindness. Theirs is a symbiotic relationship with our community and it’s beneficial to everyone who lives, works, and plays here.
Support Other Small Businesses
Speaking of symbiotic relationship, a small business understands the importance of organizations like itself. Because they are more aware of the struggles of small companies, they support other small businesses. That’s part of the reason why $68 of every $100 spent locally stays local. Of course, it may be that small business owners also enjoy getting to know someone when they buy from them.
Make Their Employees Happy
According to Guidant Financial, small businesses have happier employees. Maybe it’s because they’re more agile and can easily create an atmosphere employees respond to or maybe it’s because employees are closer and more invested in success outcomes because they’re more visible and more closely involved. Whatever the cause, 70% of employees of small businesses reported a happiness level of 5 or higher on a scale from 1-10. 91% also believe employee happiness is important to their employer.
The holiday season will soon be over, but the love you give to small businesses doesn’t have to be. Sure, the larger stores sometimes offer loss leaders that small businesses find difficult to compete with and those retail and hospitality giants may be open longer hours, but our small businesses are what make us different from every other town. They are ours to treasure and if we don’t support them we’ll lose much more than just another business. We’l lose a piece of this town that no one can restore.
Please help us support small business and give them the attention they deserve and keep supporting them beyond the holidays. After all, we want them to be around this time next year too.
More from our Small Business Season Series:
Small Business Season: The Story Behind the Community-Building Movement
Small Business Season Statistics and Stories for Marketing
26 Ideas for Small Business Season Social Media Posts
6 Small Business Season Marketing Ideas for Chambers
16 Reasons to Shop Local Instead of Online (A “done for you” article for chambers to use)
Small Business Saturday? NO, It’s Small Business SEASON!