Visit BUILDstlouis.org Locally-Owned Independent Businesses Need Your Support More Than Ever

By Ed Mantels-Seeker


Spend your money wisely during these tough times. Don’t let the St. Louis area become just another generic Anytown, overloaded with non-local chain stores and franchise businesses that drain money from our local economy and diminish St. Louis’ unique local character. Most consumers believe the myth that national chain businesses are always cheaper, or the best value. It’s not true. Plus, St. Louis’ locally owned independent businesses provide much more than just good prices:

Better Service. Local independent owners and employees really know their business and their customers, offering more personalized service and relevant advice. You’re important to them, and it shows!

Superior Quality. Based on Consumer Reports® and others, many local independents provide higher-quality products and services than the average chain business.

Unique Choices. Locally owned independent businesses aren’t stuck with a formula. They bring their own creativity and knowledge to their businesses, offering selections and services you won’t find elsewhere.

Local Investment. Unlike non-local chain businesses, a locally owned independent business returns more of each dollar spent back into the St. Louis metro area. And money you spend at local independents has a multiplier effect — generating at least THREE TIMES that amount as it cycles back through St. Louis-area neighborhoods and other local businesses. Local owners share local concerns with the rest of us, and are here to stay. They’re essential to our local prosperity, and truly help build St. Louis.

BUILD St. Louis is spreading the word about “Buying Locally.”

Our members are some of the great locally owned independents and nonprofits who really care about keeping their neighborhoods distinctive, vibrant, and stable. From the Downtown Loft District to Old Orchard, from The Loop to Downtown Kirkwood, from Maplewood to South Grand, it’s our local independents that give St. Louis neighborhoods their authentic character and build a strong local economy.

Why are local independent businesses joining BUILD St. Louis?

Because they know there’s strength in numbers, as part of BUILD St. Louis’ co-op campaign to raise awareness about buying locally. By displaying the BUILD St. Louis sign, distributing our handouts to their customers, and listing/linking their business on our website’s Community Buying Guide, they promote not only their own business but those of others who are committed to making the St. Louis area a better place to live and work.

There are hundreds of great local indies in St. Louis city and county. The more that participate in BUILD, the more consumers will remember to buy locally more often — and ask their friends and families to do the same. As local-brands loyalty grows, with members actively promoting other members, locals are more likely to survive alongside the non-local chains.

BUILD St. Louis members receive far more than they actually pay for in dues, thanks to some of our members’ and volunteers’ generous donations of time and services to the cause.

Join BUILD St. Louis and help make a difference!

Business membership in BUILD St. Louis is open to local independent businesses owned by residents of St. Louis city and county. Members receive printed and online consumer marketing materials, free member networking events, a year-long listing in our online Community Buying Guide, plus other great benefits. It’s a remarkable value. Contact us to learn more.

Small nonprofit groups can receive the same benefits for just $125 per year. And citizens can support BUILD’s mission with as little as $25.

Please take a stand for local independents and join our coalition!  Learn more at www.BUILDstlouis.org. E-mail your questions to Ed Mantels-Seeker at info@buildstlouis.com.