When the advertising behemoth known as Black Friday first made its way north from the United States, it seemed to creep almost quietly into Canada. With the Canadian dollar at par with U.S. currency roughly a decade ago, and border-dwelling shoppers flooding south for big box store deals, a number of Canadian merchants decided to fight fire with fire by adopting their own Black Friday marketing campaigns.
Those first attempts seemed to be an almost apologetic toe-dipping into the waters of post-Thanksgiving marketing. But it clearly worked.
Today, the term Black Friday can be found in Canadian retail advertising at a rate roughly comparable to that in the U.S. And we don’t even need a special four-day weekend to take part.
Keeping Canadian business in Canada is a great idea. People are going to be purchasing for the holidays anyway, and the more of those dollars that remain in the local economy, the more they multiply to benefit our communities across the spectrum of both public and private finance.
But is it unseemly to co-opt a specifically U.S. shopping day? Hey, we’ve already got Boxing Day, which somehow has remained as secret from the U.S. as the Tragically Hip.
The spreading of sales over several days and the advent of the “Cyber Monday” campaign have kept the sales event relatively polite compared to events south of the border.
Canadians are even polite when shopping for those bargains!
In the meantime, maybe somebody can come up with our own, Canadian name for the inevitable seasonal shopping campaign.
The Parksville Downtown Business Association and the city may be on the right track with their Bright Friday Christmas tree light-up and North Pole-apalooza, which starts at 5:30 p.m. Nov. 24. When you shop this holiday season, consider supporting local businesses. Those businesses are then able to support local events, teams and charities.
— Parksville Qualicum Beach News