5 Tips to Help Independent Shops and Restaurants Succeed on Small Business Saturday

AUSTIN (Nov. 5, 2019) — Black Friday might not have the impact it once did as chain stores and online retailers launching their holiday sales earlier and earlier in the season, but Small Business Saturday keeps getting bigger and bigger.

Last year, shoppers spent a record $17.8 billion at independent stores and restaurants on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, according to research by American Express and NFIB, the nation’s leading small business advocacy organization. This year, Small Business Saturday is Nov. 30.

“The time and effort independent shops and restaurants put into Small Business Saturday can pay dividends all year long,” said Annie Spilman, NFIB’s state director for Texas.
Small Business Saturday began in 2010 when many Main Street businesses were struggling to recover from the Great Recession. Now in its 10th year, Small Business Saturday has become a national event, an opportunity for people to support the small, independent businesses that make their communities healthy.
Last year, two-thirds of small businesses surveyed by American Express and NFIB planned to participate in Small Business Saturday.

Small businesses expect an average of 29 percent of their annual sales to come during the holiday shopping season, according to the survey by American Express and NFIB. Fifty-six percent of small business owners surveyed last year by American Express and NFIB said Small Business Saturday gives their holiday sales a boost.

Here are some of the ways shops and restaurants can make the most of Small Business Saturday:

•    Stay on top of your social media. If you’re on Facebook or Twitter or Instagram or Pinterest, post often and promote any Small Business Saturday deals. Use the hashtags #ShopSmall and #SmallBizSat so shoppers can find you easily.

•    Showcase merchandise that would make a great gift. Group items on a table with a sign saying it would be the perfect gift for Mom or the grandparents, for example. Restaurants can offer Small Business Saturday specials and gift cards.

•    Offer doorbusters. Chain stores know a great way to drive shoppers to their stores is by offering exclusive deals at different times of the day. There’s no reason a small business can’t do the same thing.

•    Partner with nearby businesses. Pool your resources to buy advertising promoting the neighborhood as a shopping destination or team up with other merchants on in-store promotions. For example, if someone buys a shirt at one shop, tell them about the great deal on shoes next door.

•    Don’t forget to tell your regular customers about Small Business Saturday. Put a sign in your shop and flyers in bags reminding folks to come back the Saturday after Thanksgiving for exclusive deals. Create and download free custom marketing materials at https://amex.co/36yU20E.

NFIB is the state’s leading small business advocacy organization. To learn more, visit www.NFIB.com/TX and follow facebook.com/nfib.tx and @NFIB_TX on Twitter.

About NFIB
For more than 75 years, NFIB has been the voice of small business, advocating on behalf of America’s small and independent business owners, both in Washington, D.C., and in all 50 state capitals. NFIB is nonprofit, nonpartisan, and member-driven. Since our founding in 1943, NFIB has been exclusively dedicated to small and independent businesses and remains so today. For more information, please visit www.NFIB.com.

What buying habits tell marketers about each generation

Each generation has unique experiences, lifestyles, and demographics that influence their buying behaviors, financial experts say. And studies show these distinguishing factors often lead to different spending habits between generations.

As a result, many companies are reaching out to consumers and trying to understand — and gain the attention of — these diverse buyers, says Gui Costin (www.guicostin.com), an entrepreneur, consultant and author of Millennials Are Not Aliens.

“This type of multi-generational marketing is the practice of appealing to the unique needs and behaviors of individuals within different generational groups,” says Costin. “In terms of finding and retaining buyers, companies cannot underestimate those generational differences.”

Costin discusses how the buying habits of different generations are influenced by environmental factors and how businesses must focus their marketing efforts accordingly:

Millennials. Now comprising the highest percentage of the workforce, this generation (born roughly from 1981 to 1995) receives considerable marketing attention. Many millennials grew up immersed in the digital world — a big difference from previous generations — and they think globally. “Attract this group early and earn its loyalty by appealing to their belief that they can make the future better,” Costin says. “Traditional mass marketing approaches do not work well with younger consumers. Be sure they know that your organization’s mission speaks to a purpose greater than the bottom line, e.g., globalization and climate change. Give them systematic feedback because they value positive reinforcement at accelerated rates and want more input.”

Generation X. Following the baby boomers and preceding the millennials, their tastes are different from previous generations. “Because they have greater financial restraints, they often shop at value-oriented retailers,” Costin says. “On the other hand, they have a reputation of being incredibly disloyal to brands and companies. Generation Xers like initiatives that will make things more useful and practical. They demand trust to the extent that if your organization does not follow through once, then you are likely to lose them.”

Baby Boomers. This demographic group, with many now in retirement or nearing it, includes those born from 1946 to 1964. Health is a major concern, and change is not something they embrace. “They appreciate options and want quick fixes that require little change and instant improvement,” Costin says. “They do not like bureaucracy — but give them a cause to fight for and they will give their all. Focus on building value and they will be less price-sensitive. While this group may be aging, they’re focused on breaking the mold of what 60 and beyond looks like.”

The Silent Generation. Born between 1925 and 1945, this group represents the oldest Americans and, Costin says, typically is labeled with traditional values such as discipline, self-denial, hard work, conformity, and financial conservatism. “It’s important to earn their trust,” says Costin, “as they believe that a person’s word is his or her bond. Patriotism, team-building, and sacrifice for the common good are appealing to this generation. As a group, they aren’t particularly interested in the information age; however, the younger members of this generation are one of the fastest-growing groups of internet users.”

“Communicating with customers in different generations can be challenging,” Costin says. “However, all generations appreciate honesty and authenticity. As environmental factors change, transparency and genuine interactions remain important to everyone.”

About Gui Costin
Gui Costin (www.guicostin.com), author of the No. 1 Bestseller Millennials Are Not Aliens, is an entrepreneur, and founder of Dakota, a company that sells and markets institutional investment strategies. Dakota is also the creator of two software products: Draft, a database that contains a highly curated group of qualified institutional investors; and Stage, a content platform built for institutional due diligence analysts where they can learn an in-depth amount about a variety of investment strategies without having to initially talk to someone. Dakota’s mission is to level the playing field for boutique investment managers so they can compete with bigger, more well-resourced investment firms.

Super charge your advertising!

Its time to SUPER CHARGE you’re advertising by adding the SEO feature to your print advertising in the Wilson County News! When you choose the SEO option for your print ads your work is done. Your print advertisement is automatically fed into our website at wilsoncountynews.com and keywords are extracted making your ad a searchable document. When you choose this option, a link to your website is provided, as well as placement in our website business directory with an active Advertiser Profile, this is a page on our website devoted entirely to you, the advertiser. The page can display detailed information about the business, show a Google Map of the business' location, and display up to two images, such as the business' logo and storefront. 

Newspapers still top choice for local news

June 12, 2017 | By Stanley Schwartz | Managing Editor | Publishers’ Auxiliary

SPRINGFIELD, IL—People prefer newspapers for their local news over TV and the internet, according to a survey conducted for the National Newspaper Association.

The majority of those who responded, 33 percent, said they preferred newspapers for news about their local community. Thirty percent said they preferred TV (cable/local stations). For community news, local newspapers beat the internet by 3-1, which only received 11 percent of the audience share. Social media came in at just 5 percent, as did radio.

When asked if there were any other sources where respondents got their local news, the majority, 19 percent, said no. Of the others who had picked another main source for local news, the community newspaper came in next at 18 percent.

Fifty-six percent of the respondents said they read a print newspaper that covers their community specifically. Four percent read their local paper online only, and 7 percent read it online and in print, bringing the total to 68 percent who read a local paper.

The majority of respondents, 30 percent, have been reading their local newspaper for more than 30 years. The survey highlights the loyalty readers have for their local newspapers. Responses also included:

• Less than 5 years—14%

• More than 5 but less than 10—16%

• More than 10 years but less than 20—22%

• More than 20 years but less than 30—18%

The reason people stick with their local paper is because they want to know about what is going on in their community. Eighty-four percent said they read their local paper for local news, information and obituaries. Only 2 percent read them for state and federal news.

Nearly half, 46 percent, share their newspaper with at least one other person. But the sharing doesn’t stop there. Twelve percent share it with at least two people, 10 percent share it with three people, 6 percent share it with at least four people and 8 percent share it with five or more people. That adds up to 82 percent of local community newspaper readers who share their paper.

The respondents indicated that they are interested in their local communities. More than half, 61 percent, read their local paper for school news somewhat often to very often. Forty-six percent read it for local sports somewhat often to very often. And 60 percent read their local paper for the editorials or letters to the editor somewhat often to very often.

More than half of the respondents, 51 percent, said they read the public notices in their local newspaper somewhat often to very often. Totaling all the respondents showed that 81 percent of the respondents read public notices at least some of the time. Contrast this with the number of people who visit their local government website: Forty-six percent said they never visit their local government site. And just 25 percent said they visit their local government website somewhat often to very often.

The local newspaper is an important part of people’s lives, according to the survey. Seventy-five percent of the community newspaper respondents said they look forward to reading their paper. Seventy-nine percent said they rely on it for local news and information. Sixty-seven said it entertains them, and 89 percent said it informs them. The local paper is also important for those who shop locally. Seventy-nine percent said they find their community paper valuable for local shopping and advertising information.

And although political candidates throw the majority of their ad budgets at TV before elections, it’s the local newspaper where people go to learn about those running for office. Forty percent of the respondents said they use the paper to help make up their minds about candidates and elections.

This is probably because the majority of respondents who read their community newspaper said they trust their community newspaper more than any other news source somewhat well to extremely well, 54 percent. Those same respondents said that their paper really understands the things that are for special interest and importance to the people in their area, 76 percent. And 46 percent said their community paper does a better job than other news sources of helping them understand the news somewhat well to extremely well.

For those who read community newspapers, 71 percent said their paper is extremely useful to them personally, from somewhat well to extremely well.

At least 48 percent said they read their community paper somewhat to very often. Only 12 percent said they pay to read the paper’s content from its website. Most said they would not be willing to pay for access to news if the paper said it was necessary to charge for internet access to support its newsgathering efforts, 64 percent.

The survey was conducted by Susquehanna Polling and Research based in Harrisburg, PA. From March 6 to April 5, the company contacted 1,000 households across the country.

Research finds little proof $27 billion advertisers spent on Facebook ads is worthwhile

NAPLES, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--If “Facebook advertising” were a drug, the FDA would not allow its sale because there is insufficient proof of efficacy, concludes Dr. Leslie Norins, a veteran medical publisher. His 6,100-word report of his six months of research has been published on Analizir.com, an independent website (www.Analizir.com).

“It’s astonishing that exactly five years after Facebook’s IPO, I could not find substantial independent evidence that the billions of dollars spent on Facebook advertising--$27 billion in 2016-- is worthwhile for most advertisers”, he said. Advertising is Facebook’s main source of revenue.

Dr. Norins said that as a publisher with 40-plus years of experience, who originally had trained in medical research with a Nobel prize winner, his curiosity was aroused after testing a few hundred dollars of Facebook ads that produced no results. “I just wanted to read how big winners profited from their ads,” he said.

He first reviewed 250 of the ad “Success Stories” case histories offered on Facebook business’s own web pages. He judged many deficient: fuzzy definitions, unsubstantiated numbers, vague statements, no dollar amounts for resultant revenue or profit, short durations, and mostly small, new, and local companies. No ad campaign was reported repeated or expanded.

Next, he searched Google ten ways for articles showing Facebook ads produced revenue or profit for advertisers, and 426 million results were retrieved. He studied the 300 ranked highest relevance.

Dr. Norins said most of these articles were sourced to, or written by, consultants and ad agencies that sell advice and services for creating Facebook ads, which he considered a conflict of interest for this research. No article noted that hoped-for revenues and profits are elusive for most Facebook advertisers.

He calculated that if Facebook had spent merely five percent of its $66 billion ad revenue 2013-2016 on ad research, it could have funded $3.3 billion of unbiased, independent studies determining the profit-likelihood of ads for every type of merchandise and service. “Then there would not have been these still-unanswered ad questions today,” he says.

Controversially, Dr. Norins wonders whether Facebook executives actually have been aware of this existential lack of profit proof, but are loath to reveal it for fear of deleterious effects on ad revenue and share price.

Business Wire is a Berkshire Hathaway Company. www.businesswire.com