Small Business Saturday is a big deal for many independent businesses, with millions of shoppers expected to shop small on Saturday, November 25. Not all business owners will win the day simply by opening, however – they need to close deals by turning browsers into buyers and repeat customers, and the UPS Store is helping by offering a Closer Kit.
The Small Business Saturday initiative was created in 2010 by American Express. This year, The UPS Store is launching a new campaign to help businesses close more sales on Small Business Saturday. The campaign features online videos of a helpful and informative salesperson, ‘Mr. Closer,’ providing tips and sales strategies to help business owners be more successful.
Additionally, small businesses can order The UPS Store Closer Kit print materials online, providing a range of affordable, customizable print materials that are specifically designed to help “on-the-fence” shoppers to make a purchase.
“Small Business Saturday is an important time for small businesses of all types, and it presents new opportunities to gain customers on that day and beyond,” said Karen Kelly, director of advertising for The UPS Store. “Most small businesses compete with unique products and exceptional service, but it’s hard to provide a personalized experience to every customer when your store is jam-packed. The UPS Store is delivering tools and tips to help business owners close this gap – and close more sales – on this important day and throughout the holiday season.”
The numbers from last year’s Small Business Saturday demonstrate the need for increased focus on closing more sales. In 2016, a record 112 million Americans said they shopped independent businesses on Small Business Saturday, a 13% increase from 2015. But even with this surge of shoppers, estimated sales dipped slightly to $15.4bn, according to Small Business Saturday Consumer Insights Survey, November 28, 2016.
Working with agency Doner out of Detroit, the UPS Store created a series of videos in actual small businesses in the Detroit area. In preparation for Small Business Saturday, the ‘Mr. Closer’ came in with a bunch of people to two stores, surprising real shop owners on a Tuesday. The man playing ‘Mr. Closer’ then asked the owners if they were ready for all types of shoppers on Small Business Saturday, including ‘deal seekers’ and ‘inquisitors.’ Both admitted they weren’t as prepared as they could be. Then Mr. Closer showed them how printing services from the UPS Store can help retain customers through incentives and brochures.
“It’s not just enough to be open, you gotta close the deal,” said Kelly. “We used local businesses in the Detroit area – real owners. They didn’t know it was happening.”
The UPS Store Closer Kit Print Materials include an array of options designed to help business owners share their unique stories with customers, even during busy periods when they’re unable to spend significant time talking to them in person. Options include a pass-along card that incorporates reminder notes or special offers for shoppers to share with a friend; a product brochure; a merchandise rack card; and a come back card to encourage customers to return by a certain date.
“These materials are designed to get people to come back again. We’re highlighting print materials that are professional and polished. But we also provide packing and shipping services. Many of these businesses also have a mailbox with us,” said Kelly, adding that some services can be done same day if the product is local, though others may take longer, so businesses need to think in advance.
With Closer Kit options starting at $9.99, businesses can order the right combination of materials to best fit their business print needs.
The Closer campaign will be supplemented with a series of online videos and ads, which will highlight some of the challenging scenarios owners are likely to face during Small Business Saturday, along with recommendations on how to address them.
“For most businesses, the best salesperson is the business owner, but many owners are stretched thin on busy days like Small Business Saturday,” Kelly said. “With these videos, we’ll demonstrate the power of print materials to help owners extend their message to customers, and turn more browsers into buyers.”
Videos and ads will run through November 25, and the campaign also has a social element, including a Facebook live event, where business owners had to come up with marketing slogans to win the prizes.