The U.S. Small Business Administration is hosting its annual National Small Business Week May 1-7.
The theme for this year’s celebration is Building a Better America Through Entrepreneurship, acknowledging “small businesses from across the country for their resilience, ingenuity, and creativity.”
National Small Business Week recognizes entrepreneurs and small business owners for their contributions to their communities and to the economy. Make sure you don’t miss out on the chance to raise awareness about the importance of small businesses like yours. Here are some ideas.
These Are the Best Ways to Celebrate National Small Business Week in Your Pharmacy
Don’t miss out on recognizing a day dedicated to businesses like yours.
Promote your independent community pharmacy on National Small Business Week with these ideas.
Hold a front-end sale in your pharmacy
The best way to bring attention to your pharmacy business is to host a one-day celebratory sale.
A sale works to promote your pharmacy’s products and services. And it brings in traffic.
Make sure your marketing and signage dedicate the sale in honor of National Small Business Week.
Use these strategies to make your one-day sale profitable:
- Arrange discounted products next to full-price complementary items with high margins
- Offer discounts on bulk items, such as buy one toothpaste at full price and get mouthwash for half price
- Discount items that you want to promote, such as unique products other pharmacies don’t sell
- Mark down items that need a quick turnover
- Discount items that expire soon
As an alternative to a one-day sale, send out discount codes or coupons to prospective patients redeemable only between May 1 to 7.
Offers with a time limit generate extra traffic and spur people to spend when they otherwise wouldn’t.
Contribute to the day’s hashtag on social media
#NationalSmallBusinessWeek is the social media hashtag for the national day.
Use the hashtag when you post pictures and stories of your pharmacy’s offerings and activities on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
Pictures serve as visual storytelling. They engage your followers and help them connect with your brand.
Written stories of your pharmacy and your employees can also engage your audience. The epic popularity of Humans of New York shows that people read longer social media posts as long as the stories are good.
Personal posts will work best for National Small Business Weekbecause your business’s individuality differentiates it from mass merchants.
Use these social media strategies to connect with your audience:
- Write the story of your community pharmacy and why you started it
- Introduce your audience to your family members to showcase the true “mom and pop” of your pharmacy
- Use video to show your personal side with a message for your audience or to introduce your employees
- With permission from a patient, tell how your pharmacy went to extra lengths to provide personal care
- Highlight a unique product or service that only your pharmacy offers
- Use GIFS, which are more likely to get likes and shares
Also, use the hashtag to promote your neighboring small businesses. (And hope it encourages them to promote you back).
Ask patients to promote your pharmacy
Use National Small Business Week to ask your patients to show the love for your business.
Ask them to use the hashtag (#NationalSmallBusinessWeek) on their social media accounts that day.
Or, suggest they write a positive review of your pharmacy on review sites like Google, Yelp, and Facebook. At least 74 percent of people looking for a local business turn to online review sites a minimum of once per month. And, online reviews influence 97 percent of those people. So, the more positive online reviews your pharmacy can get, the better.
But customers are more likely to leave a review the more recently they visit your pharmacy. So, ask them in person for a review. That way the idea is fresh in their minds when they leave your pharmacy.
Make the offer even more enticing. Enter everyone who posts an online review into a contest to win a coupon to your front end.
Partner with neighboring businesses to host an event
When you host an event, you celebrate something and promote your business. (You get two-for-one.)
So, why not host an event on National Small Business Week?
Events attract attention not only from those invited but also to everyone in the vicinity. Especially if you hold it in a populated area, like the town square.
Outdoor events provide even greater visibility to non-customers. And, a bigger chance that you’ll attract people unfamiliar with your pharmacy.
Partner with other local businesses to host an outdoor event or an event in a shared space on National Small Business Week.
Ideas for a successful National Small Business Week event:
- Offer samples of area vendors’ food and drink to showcase local products
- Provide fun activities, like face painting or a caricature artist
- Have a silent auction featuring local products
- Offer prize giveaways, such as a night out for two at local restaurants
Offer customers “check-in” deals
Want to get your pharmacy noticed on social media?
Encourage patients to “check in” to your pharmacy on Facebook on National Small Business Week.
“Check-ins” can spread your pharmacy’s name quickly and boost visibility.
And, check-ins capitalize on people’s herd mentality. The more people see others visiting your pharmacy on National Small Business Week the more likely they’ll turn up as well.
People also act on incentives. So, offer every shopper who checks in to your pharmacy on social media an exclusive promotion.
A simple offer could make the difference between someone showing up or staying home.
Or, go a step further and enter anyone who follows you on social media into a contest to win a prize.
Thank your patients in unique ways
Your patients keep your community pharmacy alive.
Without their loyalty, national chain pharmacies and big box stores would swallow up your local pharmacy.
So, show patients your appreciation for supporting local businesses. (Plus, appreciating their loyalty will also help increase their loyalty).
Ways to thank your patients for supporting your pharmacy:
- Write patients a handwritten note
- Provide coupons
- Thank patients in person
- Write a blog post or an open letter on your pharmacy’s website thanking patients for their business
- Offer a branded small gift, such as a water bottle, notepad, or pill organizer
Now your pharmacy can use National Small Business Week to promote your pharmacy. And you can celebrate the contributions of all local businesses.
A Member-Owned Company Serving Independent Pharmacies
PBA Health is dedicated to helping independent pharmacies reach their full potential on the buy-side of their business. Founded and owned by pharmacists, PBA Health serves independent pharmacies with group purchasing services, wholesaler contract negotiations, proprietary purchasing tools, and more.
An HDA member, PBA Health operates its own NABP-accredited secondary wholesaler with more than 6,000 SKUs, including brands, generics, narcotics CII-CV, cold-storage products, and over-the-counter (OTC) products — offering the lowest prices in the secondary market.