Chamber Chat: Local purchases support local economy

Bob Hendrickson

The GINCC supports local buying initiatives to help our communities prosper. One being the Love on Local program managed by the Lake Superior Community Partnership. The program was rebranded and restructured from the original Be Local Buy Local program that started back in the fall of 2017. The initial plan was launched as a holiday shopping program to give small business an edge in the competitive retail market.

The Love on Local program has been embraced by the community with over $300,000 being directed toward small businesses in Marquette County. The Greater Ishpeming-Negaunee Area Chamber of Commerce is a supporting partner of the program and promotes it as part of our buy local campaign.

Love on Local cards are a debit card where the initial balance is loaded and can be spent down at multiple locations. The program promotes shopping at any small business in Marquette County. The cards can be used at any outlet that accepts Visa cards; however, the cards do not work on pay-at-the-pump gas station terminals, but can be paid for inside.

Cards can be purchased online and sent directly to the purchaser and available in amounts from $10 to $500. There is a $3 service fee added per card for online orders to cover printing and mailing. For bulk purchases contact the LSCP directly by email loveonlocal@marquette.org or call 906.226.6591.

The card itself has a 12-month expiration date from the time purchased and is printed on the card. At time of expiration a $2.95 monthly maintenance fee is deducted. Funds can be transferred to a new card if needed. Existing cards cannot be reloaded.

The program is supported and incentivized with a Love on Local App that can be download to your smart phone. Buy using the app to upload your purchase receipts you are entered into a monthly sweepstakes for a $50 Love on Local card.

The program is free to local small businesses in Marquette County. Benefits of the program to businesses is the marketing of the buy local incentives, a listing on the Love on Local Business Directory and engagement of loyal customers who are looking to support the small business community.

With the holiday shopping season just around the corner, this is an excellent time for businesses to get onboard with the Love on Local program. For more information go to www.loveonlocal.com for more details or call the GINCC at 906.486.1111.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Bob Hendrickson is the executive director of the GINCC. He currently resides in Negaunee with his wife, Laura, and daughter, Sierra. He enjoys mountain biking, skiing, fishing and hunting along with family time.


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