Words matter. When “small business” and “small business owner” is used over and over again, it begins to feel belittling. Together, opportunity awaits those who brew fresh ways to talk with and about small businesses!
First, let’s get an elephant in the room. Everyone understands the need for business categorization within an economy and yes, size is a simple metric. Entrepreneur Support Organizations (ESOs) are quick to explain that because of government policies, regulated programs, and the history of small business owners not thinking of themselves as entrepreneurs, using “small business” has become second nature.
The opportunity exists within events where the assemblage are small business owners, but what about this fear of marketing that won’t resonate without a clear call to “small business owners”? Here’s the trick. Use small business terms to gather awareness, but then let those technical terms chill once everyone comes together. This ensures clarity in branding, online activity, and event promotions. As events get underway, emcees, speakers, panelists, and staff can embolden the audience by using “small business owners” as necessary, but intentionally use more alternative titles that add depth to the narrative. Instead of everything being stuck on small, try these seven synonyms that describe greatness, importance, appreciation, growth, and yes, small business owners.
- Community Builders
As people who may have only identified as a small business owners start using enlivened vocabulary, these side conversations become a signal of something lasting! If this effort continues at future events, more people will connect with more terms they feel inspired by. This exposes small business owners to even more relevant resources, helpful ideas, and different areas to confidently explore within an expanding entrepreneurial ecosystem.
When was the last time you wanted something important to be small?
Using this working draft of synonyms, we can each quietly inspire more inclusivity through fresh assimilation at events. Even if policies remain rigid, more people will learn to celebrate and identify with more codifications.
Over time, more will feel allyship with all that is entrepreneurship. We will remain proud small business owners, but just as vested when we hear whatever the latest jargon may be.