When you started your business, you joined an exceptional group of people: entrepreneurs. It’s time to celebrate you and the many others in your community!
National Small Business Week is typically the first week of May. During the week, the SBA hosts conferences, networking events, and awards acknowledging prominent business owners from all walks of life.
This year, National Small Business Week has been moved from the first week of May to September 13-17. Here’s some ways to get involved in the celebration to promote your own small business and support your fellow peers.
Share your story
Customers connect with small businesses for a more human, unique shopping experience. Take advantage of this opportunity to open up about who you are and why you started your business, highlighting the people behind the brand while creating stronger connections with your customers. Write a post for LinkedIn or Facebook detailing why you started the company, any struggles you faced, and the people who supported you. Compelling stories are often shared, which can help refer new people to your business while inspiring others to consider starting their own.
Image via @patriciaandpaul
Support fellow small business owners
Share the love with other small businesses in your area! Making a post on social media (like Instagram) is a great way to give a shout-out. Other businesses often repost and reciprocate, which gets you in front of a new set of eyes who might not otherwise follow you. Encourage other small businesses to participate and use a shared hashtag (like #SmallBusinessWeek). A study by SalesForce showed 48% of people find their favorite small businesses on social media, making it a great way to expand your brand.
Connect with other local business owners
Go beyond a social media post and reach out to other local business owners for an in-person chat. Setting up a coffee chat or something casual to discuss your successes, struggles, and learnings creates opportunities to share your knowledge and learn from your peers. Together, you can help each other navigate and anticipate the unknowns of running a business in your area. The connections you make can help you form a supportive community or even strategic partnerships. Who knows, maybe your next supplier is right down the street!
Image via @thegoodhop
Offer a promo
Your customers helped you get where you are today—Small Business Week is a great opportunity to give back and thank them for their business. Running a loyalty discount or promo is an easy way to show your appreciation. You can also offer a bonus discount for referrals to help spread the name of your brand. This is a great way to raise brand awareness through word of mouth—something that influences purchasing decisions for 83% of Americans.
Attend the free virtual summit
The Small Business Administration (SBA) is an amazing support for small businesses, providing incredible resources, mentorship opportunities, and even loans. Every year, they hold a conference for Small Business Week. This year, the event is online and completely free to attend. By registering, you’ll get access to educational webinars, networking chat rooms, and walkthroughs of all the essential updates to policies affecting your business. The National Small Business Week Virtual Summit runs from September 13 to 15, and registration is open now!
Image via @polishedplayhouse
Whether it’s something for your business or a personal purchase, choosing to shop local is the best way to celebrate small business. By keeping business in your own community, you put money towards creating jobs, help stimulate the local economy, reduce the environmental impact of your purchases, and can even help you find your new favorite local product. Investing in the entrepreneurship of others helps to grow the community of local businesses that everyone benefits from.
Most importantly, take time to celebrate your hard work, your way! Happy Small Business Week from all of us here at Bench!