Why Join LOCO?
Businesses join LOCO as members to get the benefits we provide to promote, connect and support them. These benefits include:
Promotion: Our Buy Local campaign (Live Local, Buy Local) is a consumer awareness campaign that launched Dec 2012. It provides in-store branding, advertising and other media and social media opportunities for our consumer-facing business members. Online member profiles and our networking events promote businesses to other members. Our advocacy work promotes businesses to governments and institutions.
Connection: We believe in the power of a network and we have fun getting business done. Membership includes discounted tickets to our monthly business mixers. These events connect like-minded businesses, and those connections lead to business, mentoring, partnerships, etc. in a setting that doesn’t feel like work.
Support: We work to improve the competitiveness of small businesses by reducing cost and increasing sales. Our work to improve members’ environmental impacts and promote their social/economic contributions enhances their brands and reduces costs. We provide other support services like a group health plan and critical illness benefits to reduce other costs.
Who Can Join?
Local businesses benefit our communities and the local economy, because they:
- Buy from other local businesses, keeping money and jobs in the community.
- Keep our communities unique, because they have individual character, products and services.
- Support local charities, school events and sports teams.
- Improve sustainability by reducing the transportation of goods that can affect climate change, and by supporting Canadian labour and environmental standards.
Local Ownership & Decision-Making
Our membership criteria are based on ownership and the authority to make local decisions on purchasing and marketing. We base this on many research studies that show how these support the benefits listed above, as well as the experience of over 80 local business networks involved with the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies (BALLE).
We require our members to have:
- Local ownership of 50%+
- Local headquarters
- Purchasing authority (the products you stock, the services you buy, and decision-making over marketing)
For us “local” means BC-based. We welcome other companies and national Canadian businesses as affiliate members, but we do not promote them in our buy local campaign because we feel that these bigger businesses have the purchasing power and marketing resources to be more competitive against global chains that small businesses do not.
Since the world is a complicated place, and benefits to local are never cut and dried, we’re happy to discuss any of our membership criteria on a case-by-case basis if you’d like to join but don’t fit the above criteria.
Things we hope (and help!) you strive for
We promote local businesses for all the good that they do for our region, and we want to ensure that they are the best businesses for their employees, their communities and the planet. We encourage and support innovation in the areas of environmental and social responsibility. We also realize that local businesses are at different stages along this path.
We promote what our members are doing in these areas, and help others to move forward in any way we can. We currently offer consulting services on implementing sustainable business practices. In the near future we hope to offer workshops, share best practices, facilitate group green procurement and help our member businesses collaborate on common issues (ex. zero waste programs).
What Does It Cost?
The cost for business is a sliding scale from $123.50-513.50 depending on the number of employees. Non-profit organizations receive a 25% discount, and individuals are $97.50. Click “BECOME A LOCO BC MEMBER TODAY” below to join. There are three options to pay.
Some businesses support the organization at a higher level. Please contact us for more information on our Founding Partner, Community Partner and Sustaining Member levels, or click here for more information.