Do you want to make a difference in your community? Do you like social media? Are you someone who digs doing cool stuff with cool people? Do you love supporting local small business? Well, welcome to the #BuffCashMob! We’ll be mobbing the next business on Friday, January 6th.
I’ve organized several of these events over the past year and since the idea was highlighted in the Wall Street Journal yesterday, it seemed like an opportune time to do it again.
The first known cash mob was the brainchild of Chris Smith. The 37-year-old from Buffalo, N.Y., says the idea stemmed from his realization that consumers, including his wife, tend to flock to smaller establishments when a bargain is available through the daily-deal social-networking sites including Groupon Inc. and LivingSocial Inc.
“Why do we need a discount to support good, solid, local businesses?” he asks.
He used Twitter and Facebook to rally more than 100 people to purchase wine at City Wine Merchant on Aug. 5. Business that day tripled, according the store’s president, Eric Genau. “We have clients that would have taken a lot longer to get here or never would have gotten here at all if not for that,” Mr. Genau says.
This is a tough economy and many small businesses in Buffalo and WNY are looking for ways to increase cash flow. That’s where we, the organized social media denizens of Western New York, come in. Businesses like City Wine Merchant and many others have made significant investments into our community. They are rebuilding this city and working to make it a better place and we should return their investment with one of our own.
Rather than do the slacktivist thing, posting links to businesses we like and writing on their Facebook pages, let’s get out, en masse, and show them some straight up cash love. Buy their goods, pay for their services, patronize their establishments. And have a great time doing it!
The goal will be to get ~100 people to “flash mob” a local establishment and spend $10-$20 each on the goods and services offered. No discounts, no coupons, no special deals. Just support our local merchants by spending $10 in their place of business. Think of it as a reverse-Groupon. Instead of businesses offering crazy discounts to get people to mob their stores, the Buffalo hivemind is going to take the initiative and spend money for goods & services at posted prices. The best way to promote and grow Buffalo business is to support and patronize them.
It’s that easy.
I’ll take nominations for businesses who will get a visit from the #BuffCashMob on the AV Daily blog or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org starting today. I’d prefer you choose businesses who are members of Buffalo First!. Their full, sortable, and searchable membership listing can be found by clicking here.
We’ll also keep our eyes on Twitter to check for other nominations there as well, but make sure you use the #BuffCashMob hashtag so we’ll know to look for it. Your nomination should tell us something about the business, what they sell and why they deserve some #BuffCashMob love. Lets show local businesses that social media isn’t just about nerds talking about “branding”, that it’s about bringing people in the door to spend some cash.
Here’s a video from the first event (shot and edited by Marc Odien of WNYMedia.net).