Start Spreading the Word: Small Business Saturday [3]

American Express and its small business partners are gearing up for the second annual celebration of Small Business Saturday [5], set to take place on November 26. The American Booksellers Association is among those working with American Express to promote the campaign, and ABA is encouraging member stores to spread the word to customers. The nationwide event was created in 2010 as a way to promote holiday shopping at locally owned small businesses during one of the busiest shopping days of the year.

Last year, 1.5 million Facebook users, 130 public and private organizations, and 41 elected officials declared their support for Small Business Saturday. On that day, small retailers who accept the American Express Card saw a 28 percent increase in sales.

This year, American Express is again offering several incentives for participation in Small Business Saturday, including $100 in free Facebook advertising to the first 10,000 business owners who sign up at the SBS Facebook page [6] and a $25 statement credit to the first 200,000 cardmembers who register their card and use it to shop on SBS at any locally owned, independent small business that accepts American Express.

ABA member bookstores can learn more about the campaign by visiting and “liking” the Small Business Saturday page on Facebook [6], where, under the Small Biz tab, they’ll find ready-to-download promotional materials [6] for both in-store and e-marketing. To further help booksellers promote the November 26 event, ABA has taken a few sample documents from the Small Business Toolkit and revised them to make them more applicable to bookstores. Those materials, which include templates for press releases, blog posts, and e-mail or web announcements, can be found here. [7]

Social media, including Facebook and Twitter, is key to getting the out about Small Business Saturday, so all retailers are encouraged to incorporate the SBS message in whatever social media they use to promote their store and its events. For those that haven’t been fully engaged in social media, promoting Small Business Saturday can be a good place to start.

ABA members who would like more information or examples of Small Business Saturday content should contact ABA Membership and Marketing Officer Meg Smith [8].