Campaign promotes buying in Tri-Cities

The Tri-City Chamber of Commerce wants to help the Tri-Cities remain vibrant in the face of the national economic slump.

There’s no better way for Tri-Citians to show they care about their own community than to shop local, said chamber officials.

Tuesday, the chamber launched a new campaign, “Go Local: Shop Tri-Cties First” to encourage consumers to keep their dollars in town.

“Although the Tri-Cities is holding steadily, it is not immune to the national recession,” said Lori Mattson, President & CEO of the chamber. In the past year, the local construction industry has taken a hit, along with banking and retail, she said.

But by shopping at local stores and using local banks and credit unions, each person can make a difference, Mattson said.

Each dollar spent at a local business returns three times more money to the Tri-City economy, she said. It helps expand the community’s tax base and pays for communitywide projects to make the Tri-Cities a wonderful place to live, she said.

As part of the “Go Local” campaign, the chamber will run TV and radio spots on local stations and is asking its estimated 1,350 members to display a poster and use the campaign logo on their websites.

Members can also pay $1,000 to be featured in an ad. The chamber is working with P.S. Media on the campaign, which is expected to run through summer.

Businesses will offer discounts and drawing to support the campaign and attract consumers.

The campaign also is designed to teach consumers that buying local is easier and sometimes cheaper than online shopping, she said.

“Go Local” will make commmunity members pause and think, “Are my dollars staying local?” Mattson said.

Thriving businesses create jobs, keep people employed and create demand for other services, she said. Also, it can be “greener” because they don’t require as much fossil fuels to ship products to you, Mattson said.

The campaign is more than a buzz, it”ll be a constant reminder for everyone to support the Tri-Cities, Mattson, said. “It shows you care about the community.”

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