Largest campaign to date will encourage West Michigan residents to shop local via special advertisements and interactive events.
By Samantha Vanderberg
GRAND RAPIDS, MI – For the first time ever, Local First is putting up billboards and placing web advertisements – ALL over West Michigan. The message is simple: support the people that live in your community by shopping local. West Michigan is full of locally owned businesses that make this place unique. The Discover Your Local Treasure campaign will give business owners the chance to tell their stories and community members the platform to share their local treasures.
A Local Treasure is a locally-owned business or organization that has brought something special into your life. It could be your favorite ice cream shop, bookstore, or coffee joint. The museum you go to with your kids or the place you take your car for repair. It is the place you tell your friends about and the place you take your out of town guests to visit. A Local Treasure is unique. It is one of a kind. And it contributes to your quality of life and to our community in a meaningful way.
This campaign will run from now through April 2014. In November alone, the campaign will receive 36 million impressions from West Michigan residents, and over the duration, the campaign will make over 200 million impressions.
For years, the Local First board and members have been asking Local First to do a large-scale general awareness campaign. We are especially interested in reaching those who have never thought about the importance of buying local, which is why we are using advertising mediums we’ve never used before.
“At Local First, we get to work with our community’s local treasures on a daily basis. Through this campaign, we get to share the behind-the-scenes stories about the local businesses and owners that positively impact our community. In addition, we’ll be asking community members to tell their stories about how our local businesses have positively impacted their lives,” said Elissa Hillary, Executive Director of Local First. “We want people to discover and share their local treasures, which will deepen connections between businesses and consumers and remind our community of how special West Michigan is.”
Community members will have many opportunities to engage with the campaign, whether it is through posting on social media outlets or participating in some of the campaign’s events.
- The third annual Online Holiday Auction will be open for bids through midnight on Wednesday, November 27.
- Local First will be hosting screenings of It’s a Wonderful Life in Grand Rapids, Holland, and Grand Haven in December.
- Local First will also debut a HUGE shopping bag sculpture at the Holland Holiday Open House next Saturday (the 23rd) that you won’t want to miss! This interactive sculpture will be making appearances throughout West Michigan in the next several months.
- Share your local treasure on Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram with hashtags #mylocaltreasure and #ourlocaltreasure