Small Biz Award From Independent We Stand Provides $50K in Cash and Prizes

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — New for the seventh annual Indie Award, a chance for independent businesses to not only reinvest in themselves through a $5,000 cash prize and a branding, advertising and public relations makeover but to also pay it forward through a $1,000 cash donation to their favorite small business group. Independent We Stand invites both the public and business owners to help promote the importance and strong economic benefits of “buying local.” The winner will receive a prize package valued at $50,000.

Getting involved is as easy as nominating locally owned small businesses that go above and beyond to support their communities through charitable donations and community outreach. The web-driven small business of the year contest also gives supporters the opportunity to acknowledge businesses that exceed customer service expectations and also grow their local economies. This year, the winner will have the chance to give back through the award.

What better way is there for an independent business to increase its impact than by giving to the very organizations that help them succeed in their communities?” says Bill Brunelle, co-founder of Independent We Stand. “This year, in addition to a much larger prize package featuring an extensive marketing makeover and $5,000 in cash, our winner gets additional bonus cash to share. We want to help bolster the efforts to grow small business, just like our members do every day in their communities, by helping the winner not only grow their own business but pay it forward, too.”

Anyone can nominate a small business online starting Sept. 12. Voting begins as soon as a business is nominated. Votes can only be submitted once every 24 hours. Any locally owned and operated business in the U.S. is eligible to enter the contest. Nominate and vote at The nomination phase and initial voting run through Nov. 12.

In addition to $5,000 in cash and $1,000 for the winner’s favorite small business group, the winner of the 2017 Indie Award will also receive:

  • Branding, advertising and public relations makeover from independent advertising agency — The Meridian Group
  • 12-month subscription and three months of free managed marketing services from SnapRetail (valued at $1,696)
  • $1,000 STIHL equipment certificate
  • Three-day/two-night retreat and branding workshop in Virginia Beach, Va. (valued at $1,000)
  • Plaque to display at winner’s business
  • Public relations and social media recognition
  • Quarterfinalists receive an Independent We Stand Premium Membership, for life

Nominations and quarterfinalist voting runs from Sept. 12 through Nov. 12. Quarterfinalist voting begins Nov. 20 and ends on Dec. 10. The announcement of The Indie winner will be made on Dec. 13, 2017.

Previous winners include:

  • Dodson’s: a retail and gift shop with three locations in Virginia featuring a round-up program for charities of its customers’ choosing
  • Trio Hardware: a hardware and paint shop located in New York that proudly sponsors local sports teams and a high school robotics team
  • Life’s Memories & More: a scrapbooking store in Massachusetts whose charitable crafting efforts include supporting the military through a greeting card program and knitting scarves for breast cancer awareness

To nominate and vote for your favorite small business, visit

Presenting Sponsor:

STIHL Inc., America’s number-one selling brand of gasoline-powered handheld outdoor power equipment, is the founding sponsor of Independent We Stand and the presenting sponsor of the Indie Award contest. The company follows a unique distribution strategy in the handheld outdoor power equipment industry, choosing never to sell products at big box stores, but instead remaining loyal to its more than 9,000 independent servicing dealers nationwide.

Supporting Sponsors:

About Independent We Stand

Independent We Stand is a nationwide movement of independent small business owners whose mission is to inspire other small business owners to better understand and celebrate their locally-owned status while educating consumers about the importance and strong economic benefits of supporting them. The Independent We Stand movement is sponsored by STIHL Inc. Associate sponsors include PPG Pittsburgh Paints and Do it Best Corp.


Post a Comment


This blog accepts forms of cash advertisements, sponsorship, paid insertions or other forms of compensations. While we may receive commissions when you click on some of our links and make purchases, this does not impact our reviews, comparisons, opinions or thought-leadership perspectives. Please note we also welcome contributed content and there may be links that are affiliate oriented within these contributions, as well. Retail Minded always aims to deliver trusted news, education and support for our readers.

Read More about our Privacy Policies



Retail Minded on Entrepreneur
Retail Minded on Fiverr
Retail Minded on Forbes
Retail Minded on Gift Shop
Retail Minded on LRG
Retail Minded on Museum and More
Retail Minded on NBC
Retail Minded on Party Paper
Retail Minded on today