LETTER TO THE EDITOR — Small, locally owned businesses, restaurants and services are the backbone of our community here in Southern Utah and the upcoming holiday shopping season is the pinnacle of their year. Given the various impacts of the COVID-19 shutdown over the past year, the upcoming Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday may prove to generate a substantial turnaround for these local businesses and in turn our collective economy and continued quality of life.
As president and CEO of the St. George Area Chamber of Commerce, I am constantly impressed by the fortitude, innovation and cooperation of our business community and the local and out-of-town patrons. On top of pursuing their passions, our business owners and leaders provide jobs, vital services and products, a tax base, and lend to the culture and friendliness of St. George that makes us an envied destination gem.
Heading into such a massive week for our business community, there are specific ways you can help locally owned businesses and service providers.
For starters, as part of the American Express Small Business Saturday, the St. George Area Chamber of Commerce helps to promote locally owned businesses and service providers. You can find a listing of companies participating in Small Business Saturday at this website, our Facebook account or directly here.
Second, most all of our locally owned businesses have social media presence on Facebook, Instagram or their websites. Many companies pivoted during COVID to market and provide products and services through social media and that trend continues. In most cases, you can browse products and offerings within these social media apps or websites and order directly online.
In addition, Facebook and Instagram now offer messenger video call and chat features for even quicker access to businesses for questions, call-ahead information or orders.
This is the essence of Cyber Monday, supporting businesses whether they have a brick-and-mortar storefront or not through their online presence. For these businesses, sales regardless of point of origin are what keep our economy prospering. These online assets help our companies to headquarter in St. George but have a global presence.
Likewise, those looking to earn some additional holiday spending money can use the Facebook jobs feature to look for seasonal or permanent work or utilize the marketplace to personally sell anything from clothes to cars.
In this season of gift-giving, I urge you to look for those gifts and products that originate from our community and have a direct impact and are indeed a gift to our local economy.
Submitted by DON WILLIE, president and CEO of the St. George Area Chamber of Commerce.
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