SOURCE: Michigan Retailers Association

Michigan Retailers Association

August 12, 2015 11:34 ET

Buy Nearby Campaign Promotes Mobile-Friendly Website, New #ibuynearby Photo Contest

Economies in Local Communities and All of Michigan Benefit When Shoppers Buy Nearby

LANSING, MI--(Marketwired - August 12, 2015) - A mobile-friendly website that helps retailers and their customers find ways to promote buying nearby to support the economy in local communities and the state of Michigan has been launched by the Michigan Retailers Association (MRA).

The Buy Nearby website at buynearbymi.com has a fresh new look that can be easily viewed on mobile devices, including smartphones. Retailers can use the site to learn ways to promote their business through Buy Nearby, schedule a visit from the Buy Nearby mascot, Buy Nearby Guy, and download online resources. Michigan residents can see features on great places to shop and when Buy Nearby Guy will appear in their communities.

"When shoppers make purchases in their local communities, they are contributing to our state's economic growth and creating jobs," said James P. Hallan, MRA president and CEO. "We hope Buy Nearby's mobile-friendly website will remind Michigan shoppers to buy nearby and help retailers encourage more customers to shop at businesses in their communities."

The Buy Nearby campaign also has launched a contest awarding $50 gift cards to shoppers who post photos on social media with the hashtag #ibuynearby when they "Buy Nearby" from retailers in Michigan. The contest includes posts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Winners are chosen in weekly random drawings.

The Buy Nearby campaign will celebrate its third annual Get Caught Blue-Handed Day on Oct. 3, 2015. During this day-long event, many stores will offer special promotions as a thank you to supportive customers. Shoppers can find one-of-a-kind items, great service and unique deals when they visit local retailers that day.

With about half of every dollar spent in a Michigan store going back into the local and Michigan economies, buying nearby has a definite impact. Michigan Department of Treasury figures show that retail trade accounted for $93.7 billion in economic activity in the state in fiscal year 2014.

If Michigan consumers switched one in 10 of their purchases from out-of-state merchants to Michigan businesses, Michigan would gain more than $900 million in increased economic activity and 7,463 new jobs. Switching one in five purchases would mean more than $1.8 billion in increased economic activity and nearly 15,000 new jobs, according to an Anderson Economic Group report.

A Buy Nearby Fact Sheet highlighting the benefits that buying nearby brings is available at BuyNearbyMI.com.

The Michigan Retailers Association is the unified voice of Michigan's retail industry, representing nearly 5,000 member businesses and their more than 15,000 stores and website. Retail is responsible for more than 850,000 jobs in Michigan. Follow Buy Nearby on Facebook at Facebook.com/BuyNearbyMI, on Twitter @buynearbymi and on Instagram @mibuynearby.

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