Buy Local Week is an annual celebration of local business to promote the contributions that BC businesses make to our economy and our communities. The goal of the BC Buy Local Campaign is to illuminate the local market, making BC-based businesses, products, food and wines more visible to consumers.
LOCO launched BC’s first Buy Local Week in 2012, with the City of Vancouver and the Province of B.C. coming on board. We partnered with Vancity and The Tyee on a 12-month campaign (Live Local, Buy Local) to promote local businesses. The campaign included video ads, local business advertisements, a supporting editorial article series, and social media contests. During this time we built strong media and public interest for the buy local message.
In 2013 we continued to coordinate Buy Local Week, leading a Province-wide consortium of local business groups, Business Improvement Areas, Chambers of Commerce, and Industry Associations in a coordinated effort to draw the public’s attention. Our efforts paid off with increased media attention, including print, radio and news coverage.
In 2014 we formed a Buy Local Week committee, made up of local businesses and the representatives of business groups across the Province. With this committee we devised an ongoing BC Buy Local campaign platform to promote and support local businesses as well as buy local efforts across the Province. The campaign will launch during Buy Local Week 2014 (Dec 1-7, 2014) with activation points throughout the new year.
Our goal is to provide a platform for our core message:
- WHY LOCAL. The importance of local ownership to the local economy, the role of independently owned business in our community, how businesses have local impact, and celebrating local businesses and products.
- The key message for businesses is: HOW ARE YOU LOCAL? and for consumers is: WHY BUY LOCAL?
The campaign creates a central BUY LOCAL resource of buy local stories, campaigns, etc. that can be sorted by region, provides a supporting WHY LOCAL story with resources and impacts, and aggregates campaigns to amplify message and extend impact throughout the year.
What is Local Made? What is Local Grown? What is Local Owned?
As part of the campaign we will help educate businesses and consumers on how we define these categories based on economic and other local impacts. Here are our draft definitions:
- Private companies (ex. single owner or partnership, employee owned, co- operative or social enterprise/non-profit)
- Headquartered in BC
- > 50% of owners reside in BC
- An agricultural product grown in BC (ex. food, plants, fibre, wood)
- A manufactured product with >50% materials grown in BC
- A product that is wholly or largely (>50%) manufactured or processed in BC
*Can include products produced without local materials or ingredients. Locally made food, clothing, wood products etc. with local ingredients or materials can add “Local Grown” if applicable.
Who Can Participate & How?
Businesses can participate by identifying themselves as locally owned, and using our kit to label locally grown and made products in their stores and restaurants. Businesses should promote their local impact – their ownership and the local products and services they use and sell. LOCO will promote and share these stories.
Business and other groups can participate by joining as a partner and providing campaign materials to their businesses. Organizing special offers and events during Buy Local Week help with promotion. Events LOCO will promote events and share stories.
Consumers can participate by participating in our social media contest, by promoting the hashtag #BCbuylocal, by engaging their favourite businesses, and by gorilla stickering businesses, produce and products in BC.
LOCO will partner with several innovative BC-based organizations as promotional partners.
We are looking for organizations that believe in supporting local businesses, creating community and building a strong local economy, and who want to show their support for helping other BC businesses to grow. Please contact us for more information.