Hong Kong – In support of the growing number of small and medium business (SMB) merchants across Hong Kong, payment systems Octopus Card Limited (OCL) has announced the launch of its support scheme called the #NeighbourDOOD Merchant Support Scheme, targeted at helping local SMBs in their digital transformation strategies.
Furthermore, said support scheme also helps participating SMBs to take advantage of the Government’s Consumption Voucher Scheme (CVS). CVS is a local initiative by the Hong Kong government to stimulate consumer sentiment towards supporting local businesses by releasing said vouchers for local products and services.
The goal of Octopus’ scheme is to encourage citywide support of small businesses and bring together neighboring communities to create more business opportunities.
Through the initiative, the company will have a professional digital marketing agency to assist each merchant with setting up a social media business account and provide each of them a tailored digital promotion strategy. At the same time, OCL will offer each merchant HK$8,000 worth of online media placement and marketing budget for promotion of their unique story and signature products.
In all, the scheme aims to help preserve and promote the city’s distinctive cultural and culinary heritage.
Speaking about the initiative, Rita Li, sales and marketing at OCL, notes that the company understands the challenges for small merchants and they see the need to go digital in order to sustain and thrive. Therefore, they want to help them by reaching out to the community and getting customers to find their way to them through digital marketing.
“OCL has been offering fast and convenient electronic payment solutions for small-and medium-sized merchants for over two decades. Through the Scheme, we hope to support even more neighborhood shops to keep pace with the trend of digital transformation,” Li stated.
She added, “This will not only increase visibility for small merchants and enhance their competitiveness, but also help people from all walks of life meet their shopping needs. OCL will promote these shops, their stories and features on Octopus social media platforms and the Octopus App.”
During the first phase of the scheme, OCL will also launch the event webpage “#NeighbourDOOD-Nomination of My Favorite Shops”, where visitors or shop owners can nominate their favourite “hidden” specialty shops in the city*. A total of 108 small shops will be selected using the following three criteria: business size, based on operating years, size and employee number; locality, where the shop is locally registered in the city; and speciality, where it is all about the unique history of the shop, its products or services.
This initiative is targeting those whose historical and cultural values contribute to the city’s identity including traditional local shops, handicraft shops and value-for-money specialty shops.