small business holiday shoppingWell, we’re into the home stretch for the B2C small business retailers and others looking to make the most of the holiday shopping season and end the year on a strong sales note.

The small business holiday season started strong with the annual American Express Small Business Saturday promotion. Some were critical of the promotion, which they felt was nothing more than a commercial for the giant credit card company. Self promotional elements aside – we think elevating the awareness of small businesses and making a day specific to them in the kick off holiday shopping weekend does a lot of good and really no harm – so let Amex take a little credit.  Jason Keith from reported some encouraging Small Business Saturday Stats as follows:

–       Awareness for Shop Small rose to 67% of polled consumers. That’s impressive

–       Amex small business card transactions on the day were up 21%. What’s good for small business was obviously good for Amex too.

–       The Shop Small Facebook page received 3.2 million likes – up from 2.7 million

Jason goes on to pick apart some of the other inflated numbers but concludes with the same takeaway as ours – any promotion of small business is a good thing.

Since a strong start over the Thanksgiving weekend, sales for most large retailers have tapered off. We’ll need to wait to get a sense of how this trend may be impacting smaller outlets.

As we enter the final week – you may be wondering what you can do to maximize the sales potential and finish strong. If you have used 2012 to build a strong social media presence – you have a lot of tools at your disposal.

Fun gift ideas on Facebook and Twitter can not only capture your customer’s attention but can be shared to their networks as well. Same holds true with Google plus. For those in major urban centers, Foursquare deals could be released this week to drive some extra traffic as too.

If you have not set up or perhaps not fully embraced the social media channels available to you, there are still things you can keep in mind as the year comes to an end.

Anita Campbell has a good list of small business owner tweets to spark some ideas. And Rhonda Adams has some important common sense ideas on the Visa Viewpoint Blog. Maybe she can get Visa to do a New Year Small Business Day to complement their competitor’s efforts? J

First off, of course, is to make a new years resolution to get your social presence in place. That may be hard to do being as busy as you are these last 2 weeks but perhaps it is a perfect New Years Day project.

Yes – it is simple enough to do in a day and the perfect place to start is on our homepage by signing up for our free introductory training. It’s fun and fast and will be the perfect place to “jumpstart”  your 2013 social marketing plan!

Happy Holidays!


image credit: Protect My ID over the Holidays