Signup Underway for Small Business Saturday Neighborhood Champions [3]

Small Business Saturday’s Neighborhood Champion program [5] is accepting applications until October 16. Neighborhood Champions are business associations, state and local chambers of commerce, or community organizers committed to putting together events and activities to encourage their communities to participate in Small Business Saturday, which will take place this year on November 29. Those who sign up for the program will receive an event kit containing branded merchandise such as Shop Small welcome mats and shopping bags they can use for events.

It is the responsibility of a Neighborhood Champion to get at least 10 local businesses involved in promoting the cause and to rally the residents in the area to shop locally. Terms to qualify for Neighborhood Champion can be found here [6]. Sign up for the opportunity to become a Neighborhood Champion here [7].

Small Business Saturday was created by American Express in 2010 in an effort to draw customers to small businesses around the country. It is celebrated every year on the Saturday after Thanksgiving and is an ideal complement to the American Booksellers Association’s ongoing Indies First campaign [8]. Last year, more than 1,450 Neighborhood Champions signed up to encourage their communities to participate in the event and to shop locally. The American Express website detailing the promotion provides resources such as downloadable marketing materials [7], a guide to personalize a marketing campaign [9] for each business, and stories [10] from small business owners who have successfully promoted themselves in the past. Subscribe [10] to be informed about any updates regarding Small Business Saturday and the Shop Small campaign.

Booksellers attending the fall regional trade shows in the Southern, Pacific Northwest, New England, and Southern California regions can learn more about Small Business Saturday at the ABA education session “Maximizing the Benefit of Indies First/Small Business Saturday.” At two of the shows, PNBA and NEIBA, representatives from American Express will appear on the panel alongside bookseller presenters. 

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