Black Shop Friday Partners with Target to Support Black Business Owners
Black Shop Friday and Target Corporation announce its new partnership and expanded campaign which encourages Chicagoans to shop at Black-owned businesses on the Friday after Thanksgiving, commonly referred to as Black Friday. One of the biggest shopping days of the year, Black Shop Friday is making it easier to identify and shop at more than 700 local Black-owned businesses. To view the full list of shops and community resources participating in Black Shop Friday, visit BlackShopFriday.com.
For its second year, Black Shop Friday is partnering with Target to increase the impact of the program by providing retail training for participating businesses and expanding the reach of an integrated marketing campaign. As part of Target’s ongoing support of Black-owned businesses in every stage of development, it is encouraging participants to apply for its Target Accelerator Programs: Takeoff & Forward Founders which are designed to increase their potential for long-term success in retail.
“Target remains focused on working alongside diverse and minority business owners to accelerate their economic opportunities and expand their growth,” said Maurice Cooper, senior vice president marketing, Target. “Equity in access, resources and exposure for Chicago business owners is key in creating and sustaining generational wealth and we are proud to partner with Black Shop Friday in this important work.”
The initial 'Black Shop Friday' programme was created by Black and diverse staff members at Chicago-based agency OKRP, led by Aubrey Walker, executive creative director in November 2020. The success of the program has led to the establishment of Black Shop Friday as a 501c3 non-profit organization dedicated to amplifying Black voices & culture.
In commenting on the creation of the concept, Aubrey Walker, executive creative director at OKRP said, “Black Friday has been around for a long time, but what has been missing is the Blackness. As we began thinking about things we could do to address racial inequities, we were inspired by programs that support the idea of shopping at Black-owned businesses. We saw a way to add to that concept by flipping Black Friday into Black Shop Friday and asking people to add one Black-owned business to their shopping cart and buy something really dope that supports the Black business community.”
Black-Owned Businesses Reported Success
The award-winning initiative helped featured businesses see an increase in traffic due to the campaign and realize increased awareness with over 2MM impressions and engagement coming from a diverse population with people coming from all over the city to visit and support local businesses. In its second year, Black Shop Friday is seeing a 25% increase in participating businesses.
Nikki Bravo, co-founder of Momentum Coffee & Coworking shared, “During last year’s Black Shop Friday campaign, we saw a 25% increase in traffic and sales compared to the prior week. It really made an impact on our bottom line and created awareness in the community, giving us that boost during a challenging time for small businesses.”
Another local business success was Chicago Upholstery and Drapery. Owner Dale Forbes said, “Black Shop Friday gave us visibility to consumers from other neighborhoods. I was especially excited to the see diversity among new customers and how passionate they were about shopping local and Black owned. I’m excited for the 2021 program!”
Earlier this year, Black Shop Friday also collaborated with Target to establish a majority-Black board of directors. Highly decorated ad industry veteran Carol H. Williams is joining Black Shop Friday as a board member and her agency, Carol H. Williams Advertising, is also supporting the media campaign execution.
Carol H. Williams shared, “We’re proud to support this important, culturally relevant effort in Chicago and we’ve enjoyed working with the team to make Black Friday real by flipping the script to buying Black on Black Friday.”
Black Shop Friday has continued to receive support from last year’s initial partners, the Chicago Urban League, the City of Chicago and Edelman. The BlackShopFriday.com website was built in 2020 by Geletka+, whose team has enhanced and expanded site and delivered digital support.
“We know that Black-owned businesses have less access to capital and other resources needed to be successful. With Target providing retail training, resources and accelerator programs, our communities will benefit," said Chicago Urban League President & CEO Karen Freeman-Wilson. "Black Shop Friday is an important campaign to raise awareness of these challenges, while also providing a mechanism for people who want to be intentional about supporting black businesses.”