Live Local

Member to Member Discount

In 2012, the Truro & Colchester Chamber of Commerce started the “Live Local” committee. It brought together members of the chamber, along with several stakeholders in the community, to determine ways to encourage people to spend their money at businesses located in the Truro/Colchester region, rather than having that money leave the community. Various studies and surveys have shown that many in the local area are choosing to spend their money in outside communities or online, which means nothing is returned to the local economy. Even a small shift in shopping habits would mean more money in the local economy, more jobs and businesses would be better equipped to support local charities, sports teams, events, etc.

The “Live Local” logo displayed on the left was created by local designer Amanda Bent (to view more of Amanda’s work, please click here) with input from members of the Live Local committee. It is meant to signify the cycle of investment in the local economy when money is spent in the Truro/Colchester region. For every dollar spent at a local, independently owned business, close to 70% is returned to the local economy by way of payroll, commercial taxes, sponsorships, donations to local charities, etc. For every dollar spent at a national chain in the local area, about 45% is returned. When that money is spent at stores and businesses outside the Truro/Colchester region, or online (unless at a locally located business that has online purchasing options), none of that money is returned to the local economy.

This logo is available via a removable sticker for any businesses in the Truro/Colchester region that would like to display it in their store fronts or offices. Displaying this sticker means you are committed to the betterment of the Truro/Colchester region and that you are adding to the local economy. If interested, please call our office at 895-6328 and we can drop off or mail one to you. For consumers, when you see this sticker at a local business, it means they are committed to the local area and the local economy. Please support them whenever you can. We realize it is very unlikely that any economy can be 100% locally-based. However, every little bit counts.

During the time frame from June to September of 2012, the Truro & Colchester posted a short, simple survey on its website asking consumers some basic questions about their shopping habits. The idea behind it was to find out why people are choosing to spend their money outside of the Truro/Colchester Region. The read a report based on the results of the survey, please click here. Ultimately, what the survey found was that while many were aware of the benefits of shopping locally and felt that local business supported their local community, there were still choosing to spend money outside or online. The number one item that people are purchasing outside of the Truro/Colchester Region is clothing. The number one reason cited in the survey was selection. Given the size of the Truro/Colchester Region, it is very difficult to offer the selection that larger cities are able to offer. However, it is worth noting that if you’re looking for a specific article of clothing, say a hooded sweater, there are several places to buy that piece of clothing in the local area. The specific brand name that you are looking for may not be available, but several others will be. Price was the 2nd biggest reason listed for shopping elsewhere. In the case of smaller, independent stores that sell dozens of units of a specific item, no question it will be difficult for them to compete with the price offered by a large international company that sell thousand, tens of thousands and possibly millions of units. However, the savings of a couple of bucks can be negated when purchasing in a larger city or online means none of the money spent is returned to the local community in anyway, shape or form. It’s also worth nothing that savings can also be negated by the cost of travel to another community or region or the cost of shipping when purchasing the item online. In the end, the win factor will always be increased when you buy products and services from your local business community rather than traveling to buy or purchasing online.

What follows on this page is a culmination of research on local shopping habits and research from other “buy local” or “shop local” campaigns that we would like to share with you to help raise awareness on the benefits of keeping your money close to home.

10 Percent Shift

The 10 percent shift, created and promoted by the Business Alliance for Living Local Economies (BALLE), states that “If the 375,000 households in Nova Scotia shifted 10% of their existing purchases from non-local businesses to Local Independents (locally owned and independent businesses), we would see the creation of new jobs and millions of dollars of new economic activity in Nova Scotia, all without raising taxes or spending a dime more than we planned. The elegance of the 10 percent shift right now is that it doesn’t ask people to expand their budgets and spend more. It asks people to be more conscious about where they spend what they’ve already budgeted for.”

According to BALLE, this small shift in shopping habits would expand job creation, boost economic growth, inspite the formation of thousands of new entrepreneurial ventures, help protect the environment and enhance communities throughout Nova Scotia. It is a great example of how a small effort can have a large impact.

The 3/50 Project®

The 3/50 Project in the United States is an excellent example of how a grassroots, buy local initiative can have a major impact on a local economy. The campaign was started in 2009 by Cinda Baxter and clearly spells out how a minimal amount of shopping at local/independent businesses helps the entire community. While Cinda’s research is based on numbers from the Unites States, the impact here in the Truro/Colchester region would be very similar. For instance, the 3/50 show that:

– Based on employment statistics in the United States from 2009, if just half the employed population spent $50 a month at locally-owned stores, it would generate 46.2 billion dollars in revenue.

– For every $100 spent at stores located in any community, $43 to $68 is returned through taxes, payroll and other expenditures. If that money is spent online or at stores located out the community, nothing is returned to the local region.

These numbers show what a staggering impact shopping locally can have on a community. Businesses are better able to support community campaigns, charities, sports team, events, etc., when they are being supported by local consumers.

Viral Photos

What follows here are examples of viral photos that you’ll see pop up in your Facebook, Twitter and other social media feeds from time to time. We invite you to save these to your own device and share whenever and where ever you can. We will continue adding to this page as more information/photos become available. In the meantime, if there’s anything you believe we should be aware of or that should be included on this page, please email us at [email protected].