Black Friday: It’s on everybody’s mind.
Regardless of whether you’re a consumer, part of a big corporation, or a small business owner. Although the reasons for thinking about it might be a little different for each. Recently I’ve noticed that business owners are thinking about it for a specific reason: marketing.
Over the past few weeks, a handful of small business owners have reached out to me asking about marketing for Black Friday and how to stand out in the crowd of ads that are going out. The sad truth? It’s going to be hard, on a small business budget! Competing with corporations that are throwing billions of dollars into their marketing for Black Friday is almost asking for a black eye! When we try to compete at the same level as them, as small business owners, we almost always lose. But that’s because they’ve got billions of dollars to funnel into their marketing and less interest in developing relationships with their clients and customers. .
Those corporations with billion dollar marketing budgets are going to spend millions of it over the Black Friday weekend. For small businesses, spending money on ads is like throwing pebbles at a giant without a sling. But don’t despair! There’s hope for success on that weekend.
Here’s a few tips for how you can get results on Black Friday Weekend, (even if you don’t have a few million set aside to spend on Black Friday marketing!).
Instead of spending Thanksgiving evening trying to be creative after you’re hopped up on turkey and pie, get going on your sales and marketing in advance. But don’t just plan it in advance, get your marketing for that weekend going now so that you’re started in advance.
Additionally, leverage Small Business Saturday to ask for support from your network! Create cool deals and hype about your business leading up to Small Business Saturday so that when it happens, people are already excited about your sale and held on to some of their money over Black Friday just to purchase what you set up for them! (Hint: They can’t do this if they don’t know what you’re going to put on sale! Be public with what you’re doing!).
Find creative ways to get people involved. Design something like “The 12 Days of Small Business Saturday” (as opposed to Christmas) where you start counting down in some cool way to a great sale that will get people interested.
Instead of trying to compete with big corporations on Black Friday, work your magic inside your sphere of influence and get your Small Business Saturday prepared for success. But most importantly…
Don’t waste money on Black Friday Ads.
Your ad is not going to have the money power behind it that other ads will. Which means consumers will see your ad maybe once, as opposed to the big corporation ad that they will see 14 times. Standing out with ads on Black Friday is extremely challenging and most small business owners aren’t able to put the energy into designing a stand-out ad that will make sense to put money behind! So find more creative, fun, non-advertisement ways to get engagement and send out marketing for Small Business Saturday.
Granted, ads can work! And if you have a decent budget and a solid grasp on what you’re going to do with it and how you’re going to make an impact with your marketing, then go for it! But don’t just spend willy-nilly on ads that weekend because “This is what we’re supposed to do...right?”
Use The Referral System
Actively talk to your clients and colleagues about spreading the word about your sales for Small Business Saturday.
Use a simple “Hey, we’re a small business. We can’t compete with the big guys. Would you do us a favor and help us spread the word by sharing with and tagging people who might be interested in our sale?” script.
You’ve been spending time developing relationships as a small business owner, now is the time to leverage the time and effort you’ve been pouring into those relationships with your crew, tribe, and clients.
If you haven’t, start asking yourself what you can do to begin developing those relationships now so you’re getting somewhere around Small Business Saturday.
Honestly, a lot of money is going to be spent that weekend. And you deserve a part of it.
So find ways to create buzz around your business that don’t require tons of money. Come up with funny skits, spoofs, parodies, and funny sing-alongs that prompt people to get crazy about supporting Small Businesses on Small Business Saturday.
Most importantly, develop those relationships. People will be far more inclined to buy from you if you’ve got a relationship with them, so start developing those now and create value in their lives that gets them to want to buy from you.
Go out and rock Small Business Saturday, because you can! And you can do it without spending hundreds of dollars on ads!