For any particular city, town, or even country to thrive, it’s important to keep the local economy running and to encourage its growth. Doing so means more jobs for more people, more money circulating within a specific area, and more money for the government to use on community betterment projects.
The question, then, is how you can do your part in stimulating business in your area. If you want to learn more about how you can help, read on for a few ideas:
Buy from Homegrown Businesses
To start, you may have to consider giving up certain imported or international brands that you’ve gotten used to buying from. That’s because the best way to stimulate the local economy is by far the simplest: prioritize buying from your own people. This way, more money will circulate within the community to the benefit of the businesses that operate there and the consumers that live there.
Patronizing the businesses in your neighborhood also increases the velocity of money. This means that money circulates a lot more quickly in the community such that more people are benefiting from it and at a faster rate. As a result, the shops within your small town, city, or village can use the money to continue doing what they do, while consumers like you can use it to continue supporting said businesses.
One example of how you can support businesses in your area is to buy American-made compression socks, shirts, hats, and other types of clothes from local fashion brands over ones made overseas. Other examples include patronizing a bar or bakery within your community as well as ordering from restaurants and pubs near you. You may just find that their offerings offer you better value for money than the foreign brands you used to buy from!
Offer Free Marketing
Aside from patronizing businesses in your immediate area, you and other members of the community can encourage and maybe even convince one another to keep supporting local companies. An easy way to do this is to give some free marketing for homegrown establishments that you regularly patronize.
The best part is that you can do all this for free and none of these activities will take too much of your time. It can be as simple as telling your friends and family about the delicious food/ Cuisines a nearby pizza joint is serving, putting in a good word for your friendly neighborhood barber, or recommending a fantastic deli a few blocks away.
Support Local Financial Institutions
Banks are crucial elements of any economy, but unfortunately, many people don’t understand the role they play. That said, small financial institutions, like small- and mid-sized banks and credit unions, also want the community they’re in to thrive. After all, said institutions can only make a profit if the people who live there have money to spend.
Essentially, to operate, banks need people to put money into the said institution, often in the form of deposits or other financial products. In return, financial institutions can help infuse cash into their neighborhoods in the form of loans.
These loans can be used to fund startups or business expansions within the community. People can also borrow money from the bank so that they can keep the lights on while getting their financial health in order. Eventually, these people can pay back their loans and be in a much better position to give back to the local economy.
So, do support the banks and credit unions within your area if at all possible. Open an account if you can, get your loans from them, and use them as a conduit for investing.
Try Joining a Giving Circle
A unique way to stimulate your local economy is to infuse it with money, to begin with. You can do this by signing up for a giving circle. This is a type of organization wherein members pool their own money together to be used for improving their community.
Joining a giving circle is not only an excellent way to spur on the economy, but it’s also a means to connect with like-minded individuals whose passion and endgame is to make the community at large a better place to live in. These circles can have anywhere from a handful of members to hundreds of them and will generally give the pooled funds to neighborhood nonprofits.
With this in mind, note that not all localities have an existing giving circle. If this is the case for your neighborhood, consider organizing your own. The entire community will be sure to benefit from it.
The encouraging news is that Americans are recognizing the vital role of the local economy and are doing everything they can to support it. So, with more Americans doing their part, make sure you’re doing yours, too. Consider trying some of the consumer practices above and encouraging people you know to do the same.