Ever walk into a locally owned small business and have the owner greet you with a warm smile? And have them remember your last purchase? Don’t you just love that?

These are real people in your community who care about the community and their customers. Did you know that this is actually a new trend which has been increasing since the Great Recession of 2008?

This new trend has a name — the new localism. Yesterday I was talking with Steve King over at Small Business Labs and he pointed me to his 2010 top trends for small business post, where he describes this trend this way:

New localism is a long-term trend whose impact has been accelerated by the recession.  Driven by changing demographics, new technology, rising energy prices and growing concerns about the environment, more Americans are focusing on their families, friends and communities. Small businesses tap into and benefit from this trend several ways.  Small businesses allow greater community focus for the owner and employees, and they benefit from market opportunities created by locally-oriented customers.”

He also shared statisitics on the dramatic increase in google searches for local businesses. Yet the fact is that many of our small businesses do not have the resources that big businesses have — sophisticated websites, CRM systems, slick marketing and coupon campaigns, etc.

Love Local Maryland hopes to fix that. The latest article from BMore media, titled, New site “Love Local Maryland” launches to help small biz owners get online describes this initiative very well,

“Tools include a communications package, the ability to link to social networking sites and also create on line coupons for a website or social network. LoveLocal Maryland has a very large image library, but users can upload personal images to their site as well. They can also link existing sites and just use the tools they’re interested in.

“Let’s say a company is looking at inventory and needs to get rid of some of it can do so easily. Our focus was on what is needed to help small businesses be competitive and bring them into the digital age. Most of them have websites, but don’t update them. So we made it easy to update. One business owner told us. ‘I can update this in 15 minutes before I go to bed.’  And, we’re doing it at a low price,” Andrew Kreinik says.

Rates for using the site are $78 per year, plus a $19 set-up fee for members of organizations supporting LoveLocal Maryland and $98 plus $19 setup fee for for others. “

Now Maryland small businesses (and our CPAs) can have the same tools that the big businesses have. And that is why I Love Local Maryland! And that is why the MACPA joined the other top business associations in Maryland and WBAL-TV to support this and bring it to our CPAs. Help us spread the word! MACPA members and your clients are entitled to the special discounted pricing listed above.

Andrew Kreinik was present at many of our town halls / PIUs this past spring and will be joining us again this fall, so stay tuned for more …

Connect with them on Twitter and Facebook.

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