One SouthCoast Chamber Co-CEO: Support Small Business Saturday
Has American Express lost sight of the commercial jubilee they actually started in 2010, which has also benefited so many South Coast businesses? Where have all those stellar TV commercials gone that showed the day dedicated and celebrating small businesses and encouraging consumers to buy from local establishments?
“In years past, there was a lot of Saturday marketing for small businesses that came directly from American Express, but this year we haven’t seen that,” noted Rick Kidder, co-CEO of One. SouthCoast Chamber.
To jog your memory, Red Letter Day gained popularity in 2011, when the United States Senate unanimously passed a resolution supporting it. Yet in the age of COVID-19, when we need it most, do we hear crickets from the founders?
Sandwiched between the frenzy of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, our small businesses need our support.
“When someone buys locally, 80% of those dollars stays in the community. When someone buys online, almost none of that money becomes local,” Kidder said. “And it’s interesting that about 80 percent of the people employed in this country work in a small business.”
SouthCoast has a fabulous assortment of mom and pop retail stores, “and these businesses, which define our local character and work ethic, are the same people who support our local little leagues and others,” Kidder recalled.
“I never minimize big box stores because they employ people who live here. However, at One Southcoast Chamber, our members are 90% small businesses,” Kidder said. “We believe in small businesses, which have had such a hard time staying open. We look at our membership numbers when we send out invoices, and every month, and we get two, three or four that come back saying ‘recipient unknown’ or ‘is no longer here.’ “
Local businesses are owned and operated by your neighbors. Small Business Saturdays allows us to use our holiday shopping dollars to recognize the importance of small businesses and the contribution they make to our community and the local economy.
“What I hope about all of this is that we can shop and enjoy our small businesses,” Kidder said.