By Bonita Van Otterloo, Marketing Director
Part of our Peoples Bank Core Values is enriching our communities. Our local businesses are vital to our communities. They are what help our communities thrive and our local economies grow. They create local jobs, and when you shop local, your dollars stay local. It’s important for us to support and shop local all of the time, but they are needing our support now more than ever.
Businesses are restricted in the services they can provide or are closed altogether due to COVID-19. We should continue listening to the recommendations of local and national health officials and continue practicing social distancing, hand washing, avoiding touching your face and physical contact with anyone who’s sick. However, this doesn’t mean you have to stop supporting your favorite local businesses and organizations while sticking to your budget.
Here are 12 ways you can support local businesses and organizations during this time:
1. Buy Gift Cards or Certificates
2. Buy Local Online
- Donate electronically - Many non-profits offer ways to donate funds through their websites, and some offer ways you can set up an online contribution via text message. Others offer automatic payment options, where you can set up a regular donation to be taken directly out of your checking account. You can also utilize Peoples Bank Bill Pay and set up a one-time payment or recurring payments to your organization of choice. Some organizations may also have a GoFundMe page set up to take in donations during this time.
- Send a check through mail.
- Spring cleaning - For organizations like food pantries or those who take clothes and home goods, this time of social distancing is a great time to go through your home to find items to donate.
4. Restaurants & Bakeries
5. Grocery Stores
7. Wellness, Music & Art
With gyms, dance, yoga, music and art studios closed, many are offering virtual workout or music or art lessons. Check them out and do them from home. And, when you’re done, share it to your social media channels, to give them a plug. Another way to support these businesses is to pay for your membership or lessons in advance.
8. Buy Branded Merchandise
Some of your favorite local businesses offer branded merchandise like t-shirts, hats, mugs, totes, etc. If your favorite local coffee shop, bakery, store, etc. has branded merchandise, buy it, and wear or use it proudly. You can even take a picture of it or a selfie with it and post it on social media and tag that business to give them a shout out.
9. Give a Good Review
While you’re not actually buying anything with this recommendation, a good Google, Yelp, or Facebook review can definitely help a business. If others know why you love supporting that business, they might support that business, too.
10. Social Media
In addition to giving your favorite local businesses a positive online or social media review, there are other ways to support them on social media.
- Give the business a shout out on your own personal social media channels.
- Like and/or follow their social media channels.
- Engage! Share, like and comment on their social media posts.
- Share their Facebook page to your Facebook timeline.
11. Reach Out
12. Say Thanks
We are all continuing to learn how to adjust to this time and how to take care of each other and ourselves. We hope you’re all doing well as we navigate this time TOGETHER.
If you’re business looking for guidance during this situation, need assistance, or if you would like more information regarding the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), please contact us. We are ready and willing to help!
Here are a few additional business resources you may find helpful:
- Iowa Business Recovery Assistance: Iowa Economic Development
- For the most current information regarding the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP):