Retailers who say they are too busy at Christmas to promote their store are missing out on a prime opportunity to stress their value to the community, according to the My Shop is Your Shop (MSYS) campaign. Chairman Alan Toft has vowed to change the culture of independent retailer thinking during the festive season. “Retailers are now aware that they can succeed by promoting their community involvement, and Christmas is the natural time for this,” he said. Initiatives put forward by the MSYS PR Action Group include a DrinkAware programme to help local shops demonstrate community responsibility, support for traditional Christmas activities in nearby schools, and the development of the MSYS Walk & Shop campaign to encourage shoppers to ditch the car and shop locally. “The credit crunch and the superstore price war mean that the Christmas trading peak assumes greater importance than ever,” Toft said.