Be a small business superhero!

Did you know that you could be a superhero? Yes! You! From the socially distant safety of your own home, you have the power to help others. Read on to learn how to launch your superhero career.

Across Canada, small to medium-sized businesses have been affected by the coronavirus crisis. On March 17, 2020, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) confirmed that half of the small businesses around the country have reported decreased sales as a direct result of coronavirus. That statistic is sobering but even worse is that 25% of these business owners reported they will not survive if their business loses more than 50% of its regular monthly income. We are only in the first few weeks of the pandemic and businesses will continue to feel the negative impact for months to come.  

These businesses need our support and we can provide a significant amount without setting foot outside our homes. Here are our suggestions for how you can be a small business superhero.

1. Engage online with likes, comments, and shares. 

You are already scrolling social media so why not scroll with purpose? Constantly changing algorithms make it difficult for many business posts to achieve a significant organic reach. At a time when social media ad budgets may be suspended, you can help with a tap of your finger! Liking, sharing, and commenting on posts increases their reach which means more people will see it. These people may be potential new customers for a business or they may know someone else who would like that product or service. Increased and high-quality interaction on social media platforms also helps improve the credibility of a business through social proof. Next time you are scrolling down your timeline, hit that like button to show support for your favourite businesses. 

2. Leave reviews.

Social proof is critical to business success. When thinking about hiring a contractor or buying a new product, you probably go right to the reviews to learn more about other people’s experience with that business. One study found that 95% of buyers read online reviews before making a purchase and 72% of customers won’t take any purchasing action until they have read reviews. You have a superpower that can help more people shop locally and buy from your favourite businesses. By writing favourable reviews, you can boost the profile of a business and connect the business with new customers. Make a list of your favourite businesses and leave a summary of your positive experience on their Facebook page, Google Reviews, and Yelp. You can email a copy of your review directly to the business so they can share it on their website and other social media accounts like LinkedIn or Instagram. You can prove you have extra superhero powers by ensuring your review outlines how the product or service helped you and what values you appreciated most during your interaction with the business.       

3. Support your favourite eateries.

Even superheroes still have to eat so call your favourite restaurants, cafés, or bakeries and ask if they are offering delivery or selling prepackaged meals that you can freeze. As a small business superhero, you deserve a break from cooking. If these places are not offering any services right now, buy a gift card to use in the future. This helps improve their current cash flow situation and gives you something to look forward to once life starts to look a little more normal.

4. Give gifts with purpose and heart.

Life feels like it is on hold but there will still be much to celebrate in the coming months. Start thinking about upcoming birthdays, graduations, weddings, and holidays and plan to purchase gifts from local artists and small businesses. One quick post on your favourite community Facebook page asking for recommendations and you will have enough inspiration to last into next year. You don’t even have to wait until the next celebration comes along. Be a superhero by ordering a special treat for someone who needs a pick-me-up. Send a little peace of mind in the form of delicious treats from Peace By Chocolate. Owned and operated in Nova Scotia by a Syrian refugee family, this company makes world-renowned fine chocolates and donates up to 5% of company profits to Peace On Earth Society. This organization donates funds to peace building projects around the world.  

5. Go green.

Another way to double up the impact of your superhero powers is to go green and support a small business. Throughout Canada, there are many small businesses that offer high-quality eco-friendly products. You can find handcrafted cosmetics, cleaning and laundry products, essential oils, pampering products, baby products, and more! Stay home from the grocery store and order eco-friendly laundry strips from Tru Earth. This company based out of British Columbia is on a mission to provide a laundry solution that is sensitive to your skin and to the environment. Their product has a significantly smaller environmental footprint compared to traditional detergents and it still achieves excellent results. Skip the trip to the drugstore for your next tube of toothpaste and order Change Toothpaste Tablets instead. Created by a start-up company in Alberta, the idea was inspired by one of the co-founder’s children who embarked on a quest to reduce their family’s waste. The tablets are packaged in a compostable pouch and are helping to reduce the more than 900 million toothpaste tubes that end up in landfills every year.    

The world needs your superhero powers!

Coronavirus is our new reality, at least for the foreseeable future. We don’t have control over how long social distancing measures and other restrictions will be in place. We DO have control over how we take care of ourselves and support others during this time. Being a small business superhero is one way that you can truly make a difference. And of course, connect with us on social media too (you can find us on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube) to let us know what superhero actions you are taking or to give a shout out to your favourite businesses. If your business needs some guidance on reworking your marketing messages in light of our new reality, give us a call! We are happy to provide support and expertise to help ease some of the overwhelm many business owners are feeling right now.   

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