It began as a way to remind shoppers of a pleasant alternative to shopping malls

This year, as the American Express Small Business Saturday enters its fifth year, San Rafael counts itself as a proud partner in the initiative to rally shoppers around and generate excitement for local businesses.

American Express Launches an American Tradition 

A longtime proponent of small businesses, American Express launched Small Business Saturday in 2010 – a pivotal time in the U.S. economy when small businesses in particular needed to spur activity.

With a patriotic mantra – “When you shop small, it can lead to big things” – the day instantly engendered widespread media attention while focusing interest on the fact that the country’s 25 million small businesses account for about 75 percent of all jobs in America, according to Entrepreneur Magazine.

The day also underscored what many San Rafael business owners already know: that small businesses often deliver the kind of friendly, personalized customer service that people cannot find on the Internet. And this stands to reason: many San Rafael business owners are residents of the local community and, as such, are vested in its success as well as the satisfaction and quality of life of the people who live in town.

San Rafael Chamber of Commerce Lends Enthusiastic Support 

The relatively new holiday shopping tradition continues this year on Nov. 29 – with the San Rafael Chamber of Commerce supporting the cause every step of the way.

And that’s an endorsement that shoppers are going to notice every step of the way, too, since participating businesses in Marin and San Rafael will be displaying doormats and posters and distributing special shopping bags to commemorate the day.

Some San Rafael small businesses will be offering special promotions and bargains on November 29th, so be sure to check the Chamber’s website for participating merchants. If you’re not on the list, contact the San Rafael Chamber’s Management Strategy Analyst, Evan Williams at ewilliams@srchamber.com. In the end, the event promises to make San Rafael the place to be the weekend after Thanksgiving – restoring the sense of fun and excitement that makes holiday shopping such a quintessential American tradition.

Forward Push Media Bolsters Local Businesses 

Small Business Saturday is exactly the type of event that Forward Push Media can help local businesses capitalize on. And that’s just for starters.

Small Business SolutionsThe company partners with local businesses and, fundamentally, encourages them to “know their target audience and communicate with them.” This may sound like an inherently simple idea, but it’s also one that many businesses need help finessing, especially when it comes to using traditional and digital advertising, branding, and social media outlets to inspire measurable brand loyalty and drive sales. By developing customized websites, using Google apps for business and TV spot buys, Forward Push Media can help any local business stand out and generate new and loyal customers.

For Forward Push Media, helping local businesses is more than just a goal; it’s a passion. Forward Push Media’s Chief Strategist Marc Apple is an Ambassador for the San Rafael Chamber of Commerce, and he champions the ideals of the small business owner every day.

For him, Small Business Saturday exudes nearly perfect symmetry: a way for small business owners to showcase their goods and services, a day for shoppers to revel in a small, welcoming and festive atmosphere and an event that the San Rafael Chamber of Commerce can proudly say develops new and productive business relationships.

San Rafael Chamber of Commerce by the Numbers: Small Businesses

  • Chamber members that are small businesses: 74%
  • Top small business membership categories, 15 employees or less