Today, the Ulster Herald is launching a major marketing campaign valued at £30,000 to boost community awareness of the need to support our local businesses, towns and villages. Over the next 12 weeks we will heavily promote the #TogetherWeAreStronger message across our newspapers, web & social media platforms, e-newsletters and digital editions. We will back this up with positive editorial, photos and reader engagement. The more exposure the campaign receives the better the potential rewards for our communities.
As a local business, the Ulster Herald is passionate about the communities we live and work in. We have been and continue to be at the forefront of promoting local groups, businesses and campaigns. Over the years we have used our various print, web and social channels to champion our local traders and providers, through our long-established ‘Shop Local’ and ‘Spend Christmas at Home’ initiatives. We have engaged with our local traders, listened and acted; they have asked us to join with them again to get their message to you – their communities – to ensure we keep our local ‘independents’ open for business.
Nigel McDonagh, Ulster Herald editor said, ‘“Earlier this year we pledged our commitment to supporting our readers through this pandemic now we want to do the same for the business community. We know traders are facing an extremely difficult time and that’s why we wish to actively promote and encourage support and loyalty to our local businesses. I’m delighted that the Ulster Herald is driving this campaign which will provide an important marketing message to the wider community free of charge. It’s something that we hope will be of real and tangible benefit to local businesses.”
Many of our local independent retailers and service providers have been on the front line ensuring we have access to our essential everyday needs. It is these same local businesses which are now
asking for your continued support as we face yet more uncertainty. How we shop and get our everyday essentials has certainly changed in 2020, but it’s worth remembering that our local businesses are not only the places where we go to clothe and feed ourselves, where we get our health and well-being needs, where we go to ensure we keep moving forward in our daily lives. Our ‘independents’ are central to our communities – they employ our sons, our daughters, brothers and sisters and ensure that our local economies continue to prosper. Smaller businesses provide higher levels of service, advice and local knowledge.
Statistics have shown that 63p of every £1 spent with independent traders and service providers is circulated back into our local economy, ensuring continuous prosperity, employment and confidence. By using larger multi-national companies, that figure reduces to 5%, or 5p for every £1 spent*. To say that this year has been a challenge is perhaps too much of an understatement. Uncertainty in all walks of life, of mixed messages and false starts, our communities have risen to the challenge and come together to support friends and neighbours and to help maintain a level of normality. We truly believe we can make this work if we work together.
Look out for the #TogetherWeAreStronger message, share it on your social media, promote it to your customers, tell your friends, but ultimately remember every time you shop, aim to make it local.