The concept of narcissism is something I know well.
(For those who know me personally—stop laughing. This is going somewhere useful.)
From a young age, I was raised to recognize the importance of healthy self-esteem. I was taught that confidence leads to success—even if you only have a “fake it ‘til you make it” level of confidence at the beginning—and that acknowledging and improving upon your individual talents would set you apart from the herd. My parents also stressed the importance of being self-aware of my capabilities, and to stay away from exhibiting any signs of unwarranted self-regard; because, in the “real world,” you are only owed what you have earned.
Honestly, my parents did a great job. It isn’t their fault I took the idea of “healthy” self-esteem and ran with it as fast and as far as my little legs could carry me. The damage had already been done by the time we realized my self-esteem was a little more on the morbidly obese side, and now it is just a fact of life that I—and those around me—have to deal with.
(But I promise I’ll try to tone it down at least 40% of the time…)
I’m not the only poster child for self-appreciation, however. In fact, in today’s society I am probably in the minority due to my extreme lack of selfies and almost nonexistent oversharing via social media. The almost startling rise in technology we have seen over the past few decades has highlighted the fact that all of us are a little narcissistic.
When we had customizable AIM profiles, it wasn’t enough. When we had personal MySpace pages, it wasn’t enough. When we could show every element of our lives to each other with Facebook, it wasn’t enough. We wanted it all. We wanted Instagram. Snapchat. Kik. Pinterest. Twitter. Reddit. Tumblr. Selfie sticks. Everything.
We wanted to share our lives.
And when you think about it, is that really a bad thing? Especially when what you share has a purpose?
“Social media is not just for fun, socializing, and commerce. More and more, these digital platforms are showing their value as vital agents in communication, saving lives, and serving as vehicles for advocacy and campaigning.”
As your local chamber, we are fierce advocates for the #shoplocal movement; and when it comes to spreading the word about your local businesses, social media is essential. When a business speaks to their customers directly via social media platforms, they are able to avoid multiple obstacles that have restricted growth—and subsequently, success—in the past. Distance isn’t a problem when you’re online shopping. Marketing costs aren’t an issue when an Instagram account is free. And any business can seem accessible, even familial, when they share a witty 140-character tweet.
Social media has opened a lot of doors for the Mom-and-Pops of the world, and as the strongest voice for business within the LAX Coastal region, we are here to celebrate each of them on Saturday, November 24 during this year’s Small Business Saturday.
Founded by American Express in 2010, Small Business Saturday encourages residents to support their local business community and #shopsmall. Just last year, “small business owners generated an estimated $15.4 billion dollars on Small Business Saturday,” and it is a trend that we want to keep going. Through Welcome Stations, Scavenger Hunts, and other community activities, businesses and residents come together on Small Business Saturday to support one another and celebrate exactly what makes their community great—all while enhancing their local economy.
This year, your local chamber is here to encourage you to do the same through the #ShopLAXCoastal selfie. Simply patronize one of our amazing LAX Coastal Chamber members, listed here, and take a selfie. Whether the selfie is of you looking amazing (remember, we are all a little narcissistic, so it’s okay), you and the business owner you’re supporting, or you and an awesome product you are buying, we want to see it!
Simply take the shot, post it on social media, and make sure to tag #ShopLAXCoastal and #ShopSmall.
We love the community we represent, and we know you do too, so let’s show the online community just how much!
Are you a local business in the area? Are you planning a special event or promotion for Small Business Saturday? Let us know! We are always looking to support your business and promote your product.
And don’t forget there are TONS of ways to promote your business as a proud LAX Coastal Chamber member. Visit our Chamber Toolkit to see how we can help elevate your business!
Find the LAX Coastal Chamber on Social Media:
Instagram – @laxcoastal, #laxcoastal, #yourlocalchamber