About a year ago Governing Magazine ran an article about Buy Local Campaigns. The question rose as to whether they work. Comparing it to campaigns such as Cash for Clunkers, the author stated that it seems to give a boost to the economy at the time, but then falls back into a slump. When a buy local campaign offers something free such as cash back or gift cards to other local retailers, it gets the consumer in the door, but does it keep them coming back?
Cities who initiate “Buy Local” Campaigns should detail the reasons why this is important. The reality is that consumers are going to shop where the products they want to purchase are sold. However, if they understand that buying local puts tax dollars back into the economy in which they live to pay for the city services that benefit them, I believe they would do most of their shopping locally. I know I would.
Buy local campaigns continue to grow according to a more recent article in the Wall Street Journal. It seems that these campaigns do work, but only for the short term. Companies continue to try new ways to promote the Buy Local Campaign including social media to offer local promotions. Here is an example of a campaign that Omaha, NE is running to boost consumption in their local economy.
What are some other ideas you have tried to buy local?