So is there a way to help keep the cash moving in our communities and support the neighborhood food service companies beyond take out and delivery? Here are 5 ideas:
1. Buy Digital Gift Certificates
Many wine tasting rooms, bars and restaurants like 100 Grapes offer gift certificates and gift cards to patrons for future purchases. Call and ask if you can have your gift card electronically delivered so that you can still help infuse cash into the local economy without even interfacing with a human being.
2. Donate to a Virtual Tip Jar
3. Buy Merchandise to Show Your Support
Many neighborhood bars and restaurants have shirts, hats, mugs and other branded merchandise available for raving fans that want to show off their loyalty. If you're one of those fans, consider picking up a couple products for you and your friends.
4. Support On Social Media
Your loyalty goes beyond the wallet. Follow your favorite local restaurants on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Like, comment and share their posts as well. It may not seem like a big gesture, but your social support will help these establishments reach more local residents who might buy a gift certificate from them. Plus, any new followers and patrons they gain during the stay-at-home period may turn into paying customers once they can open their doors again.
5. Need Help at Work? Hire Out-Of-Work Service Industry Staff for Virtual Tasks
If you own a business or have a full time virtual job in which you frequently need to hire virtual assistants or temporary contractors to handle your workload, consider hiring an out-of-work service industry professional until the bars and restaurants open up again.
If you know friends and family who are unemployed currently, find out their other skill sets and see if they can assist you with simple tasks like data entry, social media management or answering phones. All these jobs can be done virtually in social isolation to bless a family in need with a little side income.
The Fox Valley Business Review is a volunteer-run online community publication with a mission to support the “buy local” movement in the Fox River Valley of Illinois by shining a spotlight on local, independently owned companies in the area.