Bringing awareness to local businesses
With the rise of online shopping and the realities of a global pandemic, small businesses are relying on community members more than ever to stay afloat. Many business owners had to temporarily close their doors or faced a significant decline in revenue over the last year, but local programs like Edmond Locally Owned seek to provide resources and awareness for the small businesses that make our community unique.
“As the voice for business, the Edmond Chamber of Commerce recognizes the struggles faced by locally-run businesses, especially after an extremely difficult year,” said President and CEO Sherry Jordan. “We continue to promote and educate small business owners through our programs including Edmond Locally Owned.”
Edmond Locally Owned (ELO) seeks to create awareness in the community and encourage consumers to shop at locally-owned businesses. The program offers a business certification serving as a platform to differentiate locally owned businesses in Edmond.
Twenty-three Edmond businesses are currently classified as Edmond Locally Owned, including five that have been part of the program since its launch in 2014: Citizens Bank of Edmond, Edmond Life & Leisure, Kennedy Tire and Auto Service, Results Fitness and Nutrition Center, and Wallis Law Group.
To qualify for the program, the business must be at least 51% owned and controlled by an Edmond-area resident with a business address within the city limits. The business must also be opened for at least 18 months and privately held. In addition, the owner must attend at least two Chamber events annually and two certification briefings.
“The mission of ELO is to increase the support of local businesses while sustaining the character and quality of life in Edmond,” said Jordan. “That mission really sums up how important small businesses are to our community. They are the backbone of our local economy and contribute greatly to what makes Edmond a great place to live.”
Shopping small doesn’t just impact the businesses you shop at; it brings more revenue to the community and keeps it there. Three times more money stays in the local economy when you shop at independent businesses compared to a national chain.
Consumers continue to find value and importance in shopping locally, especially after the pandemic. According to Accenture’s research on post-COVID purchasing behavior, 56% of consumers are now patronizing neighborhood stores or buying locally sourced products.
“We hope to see the ‘shop small’ trend continue growing, and the Chamber is dedicated to providing resources, promotion, and connection for business owners in Edmond,” said Jordan. “Our community has truly incredible businesses, and we encourage you to choose local when you are shopping, dining, or enjoying Edmond.”
To learn more about Edmond Locally Owned, see participating businesses, or apply to join, visit here.
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About Ashley Neese
Ashley Neese currently serves as editor of Edmond Business and a freelancer specializing in overall communication strategy. She previously served as the communications and marketing manager at the Edmond Area Chamber of Commerce, where she promoted chamber events, helped members gain exposure, and spearheaded the Edmond Young Professionals organization, as well as the Chamber’s diversity and inclusion initiatives.
An Edmond native, Ashley graduated from the University of Central Oklahoma in 2017 with a degree in Strategic Communications. In her free time, she enjoys brewing coffee and finding the best local eats.