The Independent Christmas campaign is a new campaign, launching in 2012, and a spin-off from the well-established Independent Retailer Month (IRM). The B2C aspect of IRM originates at the local and community level, with the retailers at the forefront, supported by local press, media, councils and other organisations. Retailers and local business organisations in communities across the UK work together in their specific locale to create a month-long celebration of Independents. The objective is to draw local people back to their cities, towns and village centres where these businesses sell goods, and services, to consumers.
Independent Christmas, #IndieXmas, runs for 6 weeks prior to Christmas day
The Independent Christmas campaign, or “Indie Xmas”, runs for the 6 weeks prior to Christmas day, from 12th November 2012. It will include both B2B and B2C aspects. The B2C element will encourage consumers to divert a proportion of their Christmas spending – be that on gift and food shopping, partying or pampering – to local, independent businesses. The campaign will therefore be inclusive the wider group of “retail” businesses – in fact all those who serve consumers – bars, restaurants and salons as well as more traditional shops.
The message to consumers will be that buying from an Independent guarantees them a more unique experience. We’ll highlight that if they are looking for a bit of indulgence at this celebratory time of year, wanting to find unusual gifts, unique outfits, delicious treats, and enjoy special occasions, they should explore their local independents. This is the perfect opportunity to give independent businesses a real boost in sales;already c. 30% of their annual sales are achieved in the 6 weeks before Christmas, an incremental increase during the peak period could make a significant difference to their bottom line. The B2B element, much like Independent Retailer Month, will centre onproviding retailers will the motivation, inspiration and activation to launch the campaign in their local area and get the message out to local consumers.
Get Involved and Celebrate an Independent Christmas
So far there are 2 major strands developing for the Independent Christmas campaign:
1. Activation events
These are for retailers and their supporters, networking events to really kick-start planning / thinking about what can be done to make the most of the campaign at the local level. There are 2 events planned, which will be more or less identical – Indie Xmas London – www.indiexmaslondon.eventbrite.co.uk and Indie Xmas Manchester – www.indiexmasmanchester.eventbrite.co.uk
2. Christmas Shopping Crawls
These are locally based and encourage consumers to visit the retailers on the crawl. For more info about this specificially see http://retailchampion.wordpress.com/2012/07/25/christmas-shopping-crawl/
Beyond that we’ll maintain and build how free “how to..” guides and will continue to provide the free UK Independent Shops Directory via http://www.independentshops.co.uk
More news about the plans will be coming in due course, in the meantime have a think about this, it’s not too far in the future, and Christmas trade is really key for a huge number of retailers. Let us know if there are things we could be doing to better support you.
Speak soon 🙂