July 4th marked Independents Day - a national initiative to celebrate independent retail, spearheaded by Indie Retail UK. On July 4th retailers get involved by running special events and promotions. As the first event since retail re-opened on June 15th it was even more important to recognise and support it. In addition to the official Indie Retail UK campaign, many UK indies jumped on the hashtag #independentsday. And given the pubs were also reopening their doors, it wasn’t just retailers back online and flying the independents flag. Maybe* has taken a look at how people felt and engaged with #independentsday,, who got involved, and what local retailers can do to continue this energy across social media year round.
The best performing posts in the conversation about #independentsday
What was the best performing post in the #independentsday conversation?
Manchester proved it was mad for #Independentsday. The Manc UK got out in front with a Facebook post reminding everyone that while Manchester was #buzzingtobeback, pubs, restaurants and other indie venues needed public support to stay on the safe side.
Bristol’s Mrs Potts Chocolate House came in second by showing some 'gert lush' love and community spirit for other indies in their Park Street location, while Wythenshawe’s profile of a local florist bloomed into third place.
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There were 301 posts about #Independentsday between June 30 and July 6. 181 occurred on July 4 itself, and earned 1539 engagements of the total 2467 engagements.
How were people feeling about #independentsday
As more and more people have felt the impact of Covid-19 within their local communities, empathy and support for SMEs, indies and local businesses has rocketed. It’s no surprise to see the glowing green positive sentiment for the initiative. None of the conversation was negative.
But while the businesses got involved across the social media landscape, customers were less likely to use the hashtag.
Nearly all the posts using #independentsday were businesses rather than patrons. That’s not a bad thing though, because as hashtags go, #independentsday has an older and slightly more famous sibling, #shoplocal. The#shoplocal conversation sees thousands of posts per day utilising it, and engagements up in the tens of thousands.
Everyone wants to support local businesses and #independentsday is a great campaign for everyone to rally behind. But in order for a hashtag to land and be adopted at scale, it needs to be front and centre. Shoppers and businesses are already familiar with #shoplocal and using this alongside #independentsday really made content resonate throughout the campaign. So, if you want a hashtag for your content you can use 365 days a year #shoplocal is your go-to accompanying tag.
This year’s Independents Day campaign was no doubt a little unique in that it might not have had its usual build up, so we can’t wait to see what happens next year, and for the rest of the year round. Let’s try and make everyday #independentsday!