Small businesses are the backbone of our community and, as you can imagine, they have been greatly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Now more than ever, the support of both new and loyal customers is crucial. Choosing to shop local first and spreading the word about your favorite places to visit, shop, dine and receive services can go a long way. Customers and clients can truly make a difference with the simplest approaches – sometimes without spending a dime.
In the hopes of inspiring community members to be active allies for our local businesses, our firm has rounded up three free ways to show support.
1. Engage with businesses on social media. Liking or following a business’ page is a great start, but we recommend taking your support a step further. You can help business pages expand their reach to your circle of friends and beyond by reacting to, commenting on and sharing posts. If your favorite restaurant posts about a new menu item, consider sharing it to your feed. When you see a blog or holiday post from them on your newsfeed, give it a quick like. Perhaps your hairdresser or doctor won an award for their services. Leaving a comment to congratulate them is another kind gesture that can lead to more eyes on the message they are sharing.
2. Give referrals. People look for guidance from others that they know, like and trust. In light of this, folks commonly ask for recommendations on Facebook, which is one opportunity to refer a business you love. For example, if someone is looking for a local pediatrician, drop a comment on their post and link to the practice your family goes to. Sometimes opportunities to give referrals arise in face-to-face social settings, so don’t forget to speak up if you have a recommendation to share. If someone seems interested in what you’re saying, send them a link to the business or invite them to like its Facebook page. You can also proactively use your social media platforms to share about businesses you love – even if you simply tag a restaurant with a picture of your delicious dinner or write a couple of sentences about how a service made your day better.
3. Leave a positive review. Taking a few minutes to leave a glowing review for a business that you love can really make an impact. People often have a herd mentality. When they see that there are many positive reviews for a business, they are more likely to become customers themselves. By leaving a review on platforms like Facebook, Google and Yelp, or by emailing a testimonial to the business directly, you can tell other potential customers how wonderful your experience was and inspire them to become a patron as well. Our firm is grateful to have received many kind reviews over the years, all varying in length. Here are two examples to help you write your own for a business that you love:
No matter how you choose to support local businesses, know that your voice can truly make a difference.