Despite COVID-19 restrictions, businesses in San Marcos saw a wave of support from locals.
To get the word out, the San Marcos Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with the city, provided local businesses with “Shop Small Saturday” promotional strategies including free and customizable marketing materials and social media resources.
The chamber also sent weekly newsletters and email blasts, as well as promotions on social media accounts to encourage residents to participate.
Deon Masterson, owner of Finely Home in San Marcos, told The Coast News that she had the second-biggest sales day since she opened two years ago.
“We got some really good exposure and really good support from the community. People came in all day and said that they wanted to see us survive in this pandemic,” Masterson said. “I think they came out of curiosity, but also out of loyalty and out of a sense of community and wanting to make sure that small businesses make it.”
Masterson attributed the city for encouraging consumers to shop locally, including Mayor Rebecca Jones who frequents the store.
“When you turn it into a thing and you call it Small Business Saturday and you talk about it, it makes people stop and think about what a community would look like without these small businesses,” Masterson said. “It reminds us that we all have to do our part to make sure we keep it going the way we want it to be when we come out on the other side.”
Camille Hastings, owner of Leading Notes Studios, also participated in Small Business Saturday and, though she did see more interest in her services because of it, she is hopeful that consumers keep shopping small throughout the holiday season.
“I think we need to keep reminding people that small businesses and local businesses still need their support. It doesn’t end with just this one day,’ Hastings said. “I definitely feel like the San Marcos Chamber is a helpful resource for me as a business owner, and I think they should do even more to get people to keep shopping locally.”
Hastings added that, despite such an uncertain time, it was encouraging to see people supporting each other, and she’s hopeful for an even bigger turn out next year.