With the desire to replicate the retailing success of the post-U.S. Thanksgiving Day sale that’s come to be known as “Black Friday,” big box retailers have launched a series of competitive Black Friday in July promotions, including:

    • Today: Amazon’s Prime Day, “a blowout sale bigger than Black Friday,” the company claims.
    • Walmart.com’s response: a “rollback” of prices on items in categories including electronics, home, baby and toys.
    • Target’s “Black Friday in July” sale has been around since 2010
    • Best Buy has a “Black Friday” sale, July 24-25

Small Merchants Should Respond

Much like political candidates in a heated campaign, big-box retailers are quick to respond to the promotional moves of their competitors. Even if July isn’t a holiday gift-giving season, national and online retailers are always looking for a way to create a reason for consumers to, well, consume.

If big boxes are looking for a mid-July reason to get shoppers in the stores to clear the shelves before the big back-to-school push, then small merchants should join in. American shoppers would welcome it.

#SmallBusinessSummerSaturday: A DIY Pop-up Promotion

November’s Small Business Saturday has been a success due to the massive promotional investment of American Express.* While that company has benefited from increasing the number of small merchants that accept the card in their stores, the promotion has grown in ways that make it about more than American Express (like Thanksgiving has grown past the Macy’s Parade) and has become a great reminder to shoppers to remember small and local businesses among all of the hype about Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales.

As corporate sponsors for Small Business Saturday are already deep into planning for this year’s event (and we are fans of their efforts), a Summer Small Business Saturday needs to be 100 percent grassroots. Especially this year, when it’s more like a “pop up” event than a planned promotion.

A pop-up hashtag event: #SmallBusinessSummerSaturday

Pick your date. (The third Saturday in July? Sounds good to us.)

Declare it. Promote it. Do it yourself.

Hashtag it.

(Drag off this logo and use it if you want.)small business summer saturday logo


*Small Business Saturday is a registered trademark of American Express. We support and applaud the efforts of Small Business Saturday, but in no way are affiliated with that event (except as fans).