In the US it's Independence Day... well in the UK we have Independents' Day today. Very timely given the re-opening of so many critical parts of the economy that include a large number of independent businesses.
I’ve long been a champion of smaller brands. The challengers. The innovators. The underdogs.
Having worked for both very large and very small companies on either side of the Atlantic, I can safely say there’s nothing more rewarding than helping a small company grow its sales, reach new customers or get into the press. This is what Seekology is all about, and while you'll know I decided not to open another store (yet!) I can't wait for the day when it's right for us to support independent brands with a physical space again.
In the meantime, here are 10 things you can do to support small brands today:
- Make an effort to seek them out. Seekology is one place – where I’ve done the hard work for you – and there are plenty of other independent retailers and marketplaces that also support small brands across a range of categories. It doesn’t take much googling or searching on social media to find a plethora of exciting companies out there.
- Ask your friends which small brands they like, and tell them which ones you’ve discovered in return. Word of mouth really is the best referral.
- Consciously start every product search at small companies you know rather than going straight to the big companies.
- Follow small brands on social media, and comment, like and share what they’re doing – this way their content will move up the algorithm and have more chance of being seen by more people.
- Sign up to these companies’ emails and open them – you never know when you might be pleasantly surprised by what they have to offer you or what might interest a friend.
- Plan ahead by buying in bulk from small brands online. When you find a gorgeous candle such as any of these, buy several and create a “present drawer”. This way, you won’t have to wait in line on the high street next time you’re on your way to a socially distanced garden party.
- Following on from this, always try to give presents that come from challenger brands – this way new customers will find out about them too.
- Share content that also promotes small brands. We’re starting to see mainstream journalists writing more about local and independent businesses. If you circulate these articles, you’re promoting the overall ecosystem.
- Make an effort to go into independent stores when you're walking down the high street - especially those you've never been to before.
- Leave a positive review – if you’ve purchased from a brand before and had a good experience, leave a review on their website / google / facebook so that others are encouraged to do the same.
If you've got this far, please do take a look at the wonderful independent businesses we support at Seekology!