Belhaven Bikes has been backing Small Business Saturday since it was founded five years ago, and was this year cherry-picked to be one of one-hundred businesses promoted on social media by the grassroots campaign. The promotion led to an uptick in sales for the Dunbar-based retailer.
"We had our best Small Business Saturday yet in terms of turnover," said Belhaven co-owner Mandy Cairns Ford. "Hopefully our celebratory, convivial atmosphere helped towards this and maybe the complimentary cake helped too?"
She added: "We enjoy and appreciate the networking and promotional opportunities that being part of the campaign gives us and it’s great to be part of a national promotion where everyone pulls together, celebrates small businesses and delivers inspiration in abundance."
Being chosen as one of the Small Biz 100 businesses to be promoted brought many opportunities. This included press coverage with support from the Federation of Small Businesses, an invitation to 10 Downing Street, and visits from local politicians. This was in addition to being promoted for a day on the Small Business Saturday social channels.
"Our promotions in the Autumn have had Small Business Saturday as an integral part and we have offered a variety of prize draws and offers," said Ford. "All of the promotions raised our profile."
Belhaven Bikes, voted by BikeBiz readers as one of the UK's top twenty IBDs, runs profile-raising events throughout the year, including free bike hire on John Muir's birthday (the world-famous conservationist was born in Dunbar) and free bike safety checks at local primary schools prior to Bikeability lessons and the Big Pedal events (Big Pedal is a Sustrans-organised event supported by the cycle industry's Bike Hub fund).
Pic shows Lothian politicians Martin Whitfield MP and Iain Gray MSP.