Small is the New Big
Shop Small is a movement sponsored by American Express that encourages people to shop at small businesses. Putting aside the sometimes contentious relationship that small business has with American Express, this is a great example of how corporations can team up with small business and create a win-win for themselves, small business, consumers and local communities.
On the Saturday following Thanksgiving, 82% of Americans report that they will be shopping. If the Shop Small campaign influences even a fraction of shoppers, the results will be enormous. According to the research firm of Civic Economics, for every $100 spent in a local small business, $68 stays in the local community while only $43 remains in the community if you shop at a chain store. Keeping the money local provides capital for critical infra-structure and services such as schools, roads and public safety.
Personally, I prefer to shop locally and do so throughout the year. I always leave impressed and inspired by the retailer's product knowledge and enthusiasm. Often, I leave with something I didn't know existed. This happened to me recently during a trip to Kennwick, WA. While visiting Lemongrass, I was introduced to ecloth -- microfiber cleaning cloths that delivers superior results. I bought it to clean the mirrored back splash in my kitchen and it worked beautifully! Had the retailer not pointed it out to me, I would have never purchased it. When is the last time any one at a big box store did that for you?