|Local produce by Mountain View Farm CSA,|
not imported from Mexico or California,
supported by shareholders of the farm.
If you tuned into this conversation you'd assume the future of being a business in the US, and especially in the manufacturing and technology sectors, was all doom and gloom. How can you compete against firms that will do the same work as you for a fraction of the cost? With localization technologies, suddenly that Indian firm that charges rates 1/2 of yours is too close for comfort. Do you cut rates? Do you yourself start outsourcing more of your work to those inexpensive labor markets? Do you pick up and move to India?
To paraphrase their great list:
These same ideas apply equally whether you are a general consumer or in business procurement; spending money in your immediate area fosters a strong, vibrant, and local business community, one that you can turn to for procurement sources as well as customers.
- Significantly more money re-circulates in the community
- Non-profits and charities receive greater support
- Unique businesses contribute to the local character of the area
- Environmental impact, locally and beyond, is reduced
- Small businesses, and locally-owned businesses, contribute more jobs to the economy
- Customer service is often better
- Local business owners invest in the community that they are members of
- Create a greater tax base to support local services
- Added competition and diversity lead to more consumer choices
- Entrepreneurs and skilled workers are more likely to invest and settle in communities that preserve their one-of-a-kind businesses and distinctive character
Creating lasting bonds with local vendors establishes more than just a buyer/seller relationship, but can develop a relationship where you are a trusted advisor and long-term partner. Think of this as less blind sales pitches and greater business development efforts.
More than anything else, creating a local partner can create a positive buzz for you within your area. Relationships matter and within a community referrals can be worth their weight in gold. So instead of being another nameless entity become a trusted face. Buy local and locals will buy from you.