With America still struggling through a rough economic period, it's more important than ever to make sure local economies are boosted as much as possible.
The Fayetteville Regional Chamber is proud to launch its new "Buy Local, Buy Chamber" initiative to help encourage keeping your money here in the Fayetteville region.
The concept behind the plan is simple. The more of your money you spend through local businesses, the more of it actually stays in the community. The more that stays in the community, the better it is for everyone as those businesses grow and prosper. Essentially for every dollar spent in our community, you can multiply it seven times here.
"It's surprisingly simple to think of how much money we could push through our local economy if we thought to buy local first," said Doug Peters, Fayetteville Regional Chamber President & CEO. "The more we can do to reduce the amount of money leaving our community, the better we'll all be."
In the coming months, the Chamber will roll out a number of initiatives designed to help with awareness of the buy local concepts.
"Buying local isn't just about making sure you choose a local store over a chain store," Peters said. "Sure, it starts there, but it goes way beyond that. Our goal is that everyone will seek out local options first for everything they do. Whether you're shopping for a gift, going to restaurants or buying supplies for your office, there are local options for almost everything."
Awareness of opportunities is often cited as the biggest roadblock in buying local. Your Chamber has long pushed to make sure Chamber members support Chamber members.
"What we want to see is a community that thinks like we used to think," Peters said. "In a small town, you knew who your grocer was. You knew who your dentist was. The awareness was easy to come by. But now, that's not as easy anymore. There are so many competing avenues for our attention that we frequently just go with what we think is quickest and cheapest."
While cost is always a concern when focusing on buying local, it doesn't have to be a major hurdle.
"We understand that there are other places outside our community that you can possibly get things cheaper from," Peters said. "But if the demand increases for goods and services to local vendors, prices are likely to be much more competitive."
As the program rolls out in the coming months, the Chamber will be asking for community input on how best to support our local businesses. If you've got ideas for programs or projects that can help, please contact your Chamber today.
"We consider this among the most important missions we can take on." Peters said. "Watching the Fayetteville region thrive and grow is what we're all about. This program should help boost that."
The Impact of Supporting Local
By choosing to patronize locally owned establishments, you make a positive impact on our community in many ways. Here are just 5 of them:
1. Environment - By buying things made closer to home, you’re cutting down on fossil fuel use, reducing your carbon impact and saving money.
2. Local Economy - Local businesses buy more often from other local businesses, so the money you spend is retained in the community in a more concentrated fashion.
3. Local Flavor - The experience at a local establishment is completely unique – providing the local flavor of the area
4. Community Care - Local entrepreneurs are more connected to our community, because they live here, too. They are more likely than their non-local businesses to get involved in community efforts.
5. Voicing Your Opinion - You are voting with your dollar to say, “Hey, I like this place and the neighborhood wouldn’t be the same without it.”