by Tyson Glover
Black Friday is almost its own holiday at this point. Many eager shoppers across the United States speed through their Thanksgiving dinners just to get to the mall early. This day of deals has spurred a movement within the world of communications.
This wave of excitement and sales has created an expansion from Black Friday that includes “Cyber Monday” and “Giving Tuesday.” Both of these events have changed the way that companies behave at physical storefronts and online.
The small business was lost in this onslaught of great deals and the sales prices of larger companies. Consumers were driven to the larger companies at shopping malls rather than small businesses in downtown areas. Small business owners across the country saw this as a problem when trying to compete with larger brands.
In order to help small businesses compete during the holiday season, American Express created a movement to introduce a day of shopping exclusively at small businesses. They coined the term Small Business Saturday. This campaign was pushed to create more of a drive to small businesses during the holiday season.
According to AdAge, the original idea was almost called local Tuesday, until it was taken on by the advertising agency Crispin Porter & Bogusky. The mission was to create an idea that would help American Express increase sales with their small-business merchants.
In the year 2010, American Express took this idea and ran with it, beginning a new campaign called Small Business Saturday. It introduced a new shopping holiday between Black Friday and Cyber Monday. The campaign encouraged shoppers to stray away from the national chains and head in the direction of small and local businesses.
At Elon University, the home of Live Oak Communications, the effects were seen right away, Michael Hemstreet is a bartender/barista at the Oak House. Located in downtown Elon, Michael described his admiration for small business Saturday: “It’s awesome. At the Oak House, we take pride in the ability to support local breweries from North Carolina. This day will allow us to connect with more local customers and develop relationships for years to come.”
Small business Saturday will continue to grow not only small business but also communities for years to come. Smaller downtown areas will see more foot traffic in the coming years. American Express proved it to be true once again, no matter how big your company gets you should never forget about the little people, or businesses for that matter!
Tyson Glover, Account Executive