On the morning of May 30, five million readers of the Daily Mirror and the Daily Record (in Scotland) will open their copies to find money-off coupons giving great deals on big brands in local shops.
It’s the start of the biggest-ever generic wholesale/independent sector bonanza alerting the consumer (who will decide the fate of the sector) to lots of good things about independent shops.
National Independents’ Week is the crucial showstopper for the My Shop is Your Shop (MSYS) campaign launched in 2004 to fill the vacuum caused by the absence of a positive non-protest consumer and trade programme.
It’s a programme which has proved it can alert the shopper to the positive and unique values brought to the local community by the local independent c-store, newsagent and rural shop.
And it’s a campaign which has proved that it can achieve its objectives of encouraging the independent to maximise his or her involvement in the local neighbourhood as a footfall driver.
What makes MSYS different is that it does not fall into the conventional “anti-Tesco” lobby. That’s for others. MSYS deploys every ounce of its energy on cross-industry marketing and promotional activity: it’s just pro-independent.
Sole traders and family businesses supplied by wholesalers and the consumer using those outlets are the target of MSYS – positively encouraging the former to recognise the importance of the latter.
In this way MSYS helps to dispel the gloomy myth of the imminent demise of the local independent store, which protests about the power of the multiples appear to spread among the public.
What’s different this year – the second NIW which was expanded from the original one-day event – is the range of activities. There’s something for everybody.
Big supportive brands are making a difference. They recognise the power of the platform created by MSYS and NIW.
IT’S STREET PARTY TIME AGAIN
Lots of independent retailers threw street parties for their local communities in NIW 07. They were supported by many supportive suppliers who donated free product, samples, goodies and give-aways – ask and you will receive was the cry.
One retailer told ProWholesaler: “We organised our street party with a lot of help from our wholesaler and those suppliers who call on us. We had a ball.
“It’s not just the goodwill which results from this on the day. It’s the longer-term impact on the community which is important.”
Street party guidance has been published by MSYS and is available on the website [http://www.myshopisyourshop.co.uk]