Small businesses 'bringing back the love' to Keynsham High Street

Published on: 06 Nov 2015

November 2015

A group of Keynsham small business owners are hoping to have the best December ever by working together to encourage shoppers to keep it local this Christmas.

The local entrepreneurs are working on a range of initiatives to attract people to the High Street and to other ventures based in the town, including social media campaigns and coming up with added personal touches not offered by bigger firms.

Fiona Wyatt, who runs online men’s footwear firm A Wyatt Shoe Shop, has been inspired by Small Business Saturday, an initiative first launched in America to increase the footfall on high streets on a certain day.

Small Business Saturday is taking place on December 5 and Fiona says she hopes to see Keynsham High Street “buzzing” as local firms promote what they have to offer.

Fiona, who hopes one day to open a department store in Bath, said: “This is the beginning of the plan to ‘bring back the love to Keynsham High Street’.

“The beauty about being in a small community is that people really want to help. I have received so much moral support from the businesses that have signed up on my venture to make this December the best December yet and joining SBS15.”

Some of the companies involved will be offering incentives that go beyond the discounts offered by bigger firms – Fiona is offering to hand-deliver any pair of shoes ordered from her on the day in the BS and BA postcode areas and to polish another pair of shoes for the customer, for example.

And the December 5 event is just one part of the Keynsham campaign, which is also challenging each business to raise its social media profile, attracting more “likes” on Facebook and followers on Twitter, with the winner earning a one-minute slot on Keynsham Town Community Radio to promote what they do. The companies involved all attended a recent social media workshop at The Ship Inn run by Get Up To Speed, which is supported by local councils.

Fiona added that shopping locally has many benefits for the local economy, adding: “When a customer shops in a small business, that shopper is helping to pay that business owner’s mortgage, put food on the table, pay for ballet or football lessons. If they shop in a large chain store, they are paying for the CEO to have another holiday abroad, they are paying the dividends to be paid to shareholders. That’s the fundamental difference.”

The local firms supporting Fiona’s venture so far are: Smart Computers, Jazz PC, Bath Bakery, The Beehive Practice, Trigaci, Simply Carpets of Keynsham, Grimebusters, iTeam Solutions, Truly Bespoke, Fenton and Charles and The Ship Inn, which can all be found online.

 

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