Local Love

 -  4 min read

Today, as consumers, we sometimes find ourselves buying things without even really thinking about it. Big brands target us through multiple channels 24 hours a day, seven days a week—and it works. With one click, swipe or scan, we can have almost whatever we want delivered to our doorstep by the time we get home.

However, many consumers lately are finding it more appealing to shop local to support local business owners and, in the process, build up their communities. This is Local Love.

Shopping local allows us, the consumer, to feel that we can trust our product more than when it comes from a place of mass production. Whether we realize it or not, we all crave a connection to something in this world. Shopping online is an impersonal experience, but when we shop local, we make an immediate connection—a trust is established between producer (and, by extension, product) and consumer.

There is also a sense of exclusivity that comes from shopping local. Sometimes you’ve bought the last item of a product that will never be produced again. Other times, you’ve bought one of just 50 products ever made. Having something that rare excites a consumer and even allows them to better trust in the product—because their connection to it is so much more immediate. Knowing a product’s origin and lineage is something consumers simply cannot get from big brands.

Objects shown at Renegade by 88er Danielle Chen

A great example of how Local Love can excite a consumer is Renegade Craft Fair. This fair takes place in 12 cities across the world, and twice a year it comes to Chicago, for one weekend at a time. Local businesses participate alongside makers and designers from all over the country. Renegade is a great way to experience Local Love firsthand. From chatting with vendors to buying products, customers are able to learn about dozens of small brands, make instant connections and get their hands on some amazing items.

Renegade Craft Fair is just the beginning of how local and small business owners are getting out there with their products and pleasing the public. With there being so many opportunities to shop local, it’s no surprise that 97% of people search for local businesses on the internet. Consumers crave a connection to their products, and when they shop local that’s what they get. Local Love brings communities closer together. It’s like a family we choose to belong to.

Photos courtesy of 88er Danielle Chen

While online shopping from the large brands we’re used to is sometimes inevitable, it’s important to stay mindful. Rather than only shopping from one place, like Amazon or Target, make it a point to see what’s in your neighborhood. Find a craft fair around town and give the makers and designers the support they need. In our world today, we can get whatever we want with a click of a button, but things are better when we keep our love local.

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