We are back with our increasingly popular interview series. Today we are interviewing Vanessa Crooker from American Express Canada who will share more thoughts with us about the new Shop Small campaign. Thank you for taking the time to answer our questions Vanessa, we appreciate your time!
Q: Please tell us about yourself. What is your role with American Express Canada (AMEX)?
I’m Vanessa Crooker, the Vice President of Merchant Marketing at American Express Canada. In my role, I’m responsible for leading a team that focuses on engaging our network of Merchants.
Q: What is this Shop Small campaign about?
We launched the Shop Small program to stand by small businesses and support them as they strive to recover from the impacts of COVID-19. We’re investing in a national advertising campaign backed by our largest-ever Cardmember offer to help jumpstart spending at local businesses. Until September 13, 2020, Cardmembers can get $5 back in credits when they spend at least $10 at up to 10 different small businesses, allowing them to earn up to $50 in credits through the program.
Globally, American Express is investing US $200 million in Shop Small across six international markets, including the US, Mexico, UK, Australia, and Japan, in addition to Canada. Shop Small launched in Canada in 2013, and this marks the first time the campaign has extended its reach at such a large-scale in Canada.
Q: What are some of the key things that you would like for small businesses to benefit from the Shop Small campaign?
We commissioned proprietary Small Business Recovery Research to gain new insights into how the pandemic has affected small businesses and customers within their communities. Through this survey, we learned that more than half (53%) of small business owners are concerned their businesses will not make it through to 2021.
These business owners have been fighting to survive, but they are resilient and are ready to get back to business. In fact, over half (51%) of the business owners we surveyed said they need a sharp recovery for their business to remain viable and over three-quarters (77%) agreed sales promotions are important to stimulate spending for their business to make a successful recovery.
We launched our biggest-ever Cardmember offer to help jumpstart spending at small businesses and support them in their recovery. Our goal with the Shop Small promotion is to have Cardmembers show up for small businesses as much as possible. We want them to support multiple local businesses, which is why we have made it possible to earn the credit ten times by shopping at ten different businesses – online, curbside or in-store.
Q: What else can we look forward to from American Express Business Canada?
We’ve run several Shop Small promotions previously to entice our Cardmembers to shop at local businesses, but this is our largest one to-date. With this program, we are extending our typical 6-week offer to 3 months, making it available nationally, and have raised the number of times our Cardmembers can earn credit back. As we move forward with reopening across the country, we are committed to continuing to help small businesses recover, rebuild and navigate the new normal.
Q: Any closing thoughts?
At Amex, we understand the critical role we can play in encouraging not only our own Cardmembers, but all Canadians to get out there and show up for small businesses. With this campaign, it’s not about how much you spend or how you pay. It’s about standing by the small business owners who have given so much to our communities.