Wow, can you believe it’s the middle of August already? Right now back to school is on the minds of many families in our area. And as you head out to pick up all the supplies you need to send the kids back to school prepared and in style think about this, if every family in the country spent $100 of their back to school shopping budget at a locally owned, independent business over $7.8 billion would be directly returned to local communities in this country. What an impact we could all have if we just stopped and shopped locally when the opportunity arises.
Even if it’s not $100 just by shifting a portion of our spending think of the impact we can have to create more jobs and a stronger community right here in Rhinelander.
This month the Chamber and DRI are launching the second year of I Buy Local and we want you to participate. There are two different ways you can get involved. First as a business and second as a consumer.
If you are a local business owner we want you to join the program. In our second year we are again offering advertising, networking and educational resources for businesses. We’ve revamped our approach with a new and fresh logo plus a more targeted advertising campaign.
This year we are looking at advertising on television, radio and in print. Plus, we are putting a focus on getting consumers in the Rhinelander area involved with the program in a much stronger way. We are also looking for some great prizes from our local business community as well to give out as promotions during the campaign so if this is something you’d be interested in hearing more about give me a call at the Chamber and I can give you details on all aspects of the program.
Now for the second part, consumers. This year we have a consumer promotion we are going to launch. For $2 you as a community member can not only support the local business community but also area non-profit organizations. For $2 you can purchase a consumer card which you will take with you when you visit participating I Buy Local businesses.
Every time you make a purchase you will get a punch on your card. After ten punches you’ll be entered into the drawings for our monthly prizes. The $2 will also get you a Buy Local button and 50% of the proceeds will be going to local non-profit organizations. We are still working out the details on this promotion but we are excited to get local community members involved and showing off the pride we all have for supporting our local Rhinelander businesses.
Spending dollars locally means big impacts for the Rhinelander community. Nationally small businesses are the leading employer which means each time you shop at a local business you are helping your neighbors, family and friends earn a living, send their kids to school and to continue living in our community. Still not convinced it’s worth the effort? Well think about this fact, non-profit organizations receive on average 250% more support from smaller business owners than larger businesses. That is a huge impact.
Overall it’s the smaller, locally owned stores that help give Rhinelander it’s vibrant and unique vibe. Plus, for every dollar that you spend at a local business 68 cents stays right here in our community continuing the cycle that helps keep our economy strong.
So if you are a local business and interested in learning more about I Buy Local give me a call, 715-365-7464, I’d love to talk to you about all the ways we can get your business involved and help keep our community strong. And the next time you head out to spend a few dollars remember to look for the I Buy Local logo and think local first!
Lara Reed is available at 715-365-7464.