Well at the time of writing, that’s precisely the question we are posing as we look at developing the site – how can we encourage people to buy from us as locals? And vice versa, you buy from them?
Our Plans In Full To Make This Community Even Better
The concept we are working on next, at its core is very simple. To get people to buy from us, we should also look at how we can starting using and preferring our little community when we are buying.
When we do, we are supporting another business. That helps protect them, the jobs that business creates, and in turn the suppliers that benefit from that business thriving.
But we also need that local business to deliver value. Can we trust them? Do we know they will deliver?
Let’s Reward The Buyers – And Create Local Heroes
If we are going to encourage people to buy from within our online and offline community, the real heroes are those who do.
That’s why we are working on the concept of Reputation Credits.
By buying you are awarded ONE credit. That does two things, it creates a special profile page for you permanently. You never lose that page.
And being on more than zero points, gets you listed on a special “Local Hero” page. And you stay there as long as you hold ONE credit.
Buy From A Local Hero
Then, as a community, let’s keep checking our Local Hero page – these are the people that deserve something back. So, from their profile, if we feel we need their service, we can get in touch and if the quote is good and we buy – both of you win..
If we subsequently buy, that business gains a sale and a customer. And a review from the buyer. A good result for them? A fair reward?
That deducts the Reputation Credit from the seller, and awards it to the buyer. Why take it away? Simple. It just leaves the people that have bought but haven’t had anything back – so it narrows the list and focuses on those who deserve their turn
So the seller is still a local hero – just buying once entitled them to the profile page, but now they are down to zero credits, they lose their listing on the Local Hero directory until the next time they buy.
BUT they are replaced with a new, or returning Local Hero who are now listed. Of course if you have bought lots, you stay on the page until you once more reach zero.
At the same time, we are also gathering feedback on how that business performed as a review which others can see.
Encouraging The Linked Online Community To Turn Here First
The search facility allows you to find a supplier fast. So the concept is very simple. Turn to this community first whenever you need anything for your business.
So when you do buy, you are effectively turning your purchase into a potential future sale.
But It Goes Further Too
If you can’t find a supplier from the Linked Online community, if you did buy local, you can still earn a Reputation Credit.
Simply review that local business. And they will be invited to take a free listing too where your review can be seen.
But this new member has value to our community – they become a potential buyer we didn’t have before.
And you’re also helping add quality people to community, with an endorsement which helps others decide to use them.
So you will still be able to earn Reputation Credits because you bought local, and potentially expanded our community too.
When Will This Happen?
As soon as possible! Myself and Pam have invested in the website. Takings from the monthly event got us to this point.
This next module will take more. That’s why we have the different paid membership options. That income helps us add great new features to this community just like this.
That’s why we encourage you to take part in a number of ways – please buy from other members of the community now – you don’t need to wait – the design for this section of the site allows you to retrospectively review purchases from other members and therefore claim Reputation Credits.
Attend the event. Doing so raises your presence in the community – meeting for real makes a big impact – and it’s a great event as many will attest.
And what about upgrading your membership so you get that extra prominence right now? See how you would look with a quick visit to the Member Directory here.
Chat in the group – that keeps you top of mind.
Attend the event – people can meet you for real which starts or builds relationships already started.
Buying from or recommending others – and as you see, that will be rewarded with extra prominence (you can retrospectively claim Reputation Credits at launch).
Connecting with each other on LinkedIn. That’s easy too – just pop across to the Member Directory. Hit the “LinkedIn Profile” link on each profile which takes you to their page on LinkedIn where you can hit connect.
Joining the Online/Offline LinkedIn group – Easy – click here to visit the group and hit the Request To Join button – and you’re in!
Overall – the more you take part, the better it is for your local reputation and ultimately your business.
Happy networking all!