As promised yesterday, some things to think about when we are talking local.
You won’t see the word beer, but that doesn’t mean the lessons aren’t relevant.
First, this comes from a conversation back in Sitka, Alaska, last summer. A local (of course) and I began talking in a locally owned coffee shop and finished in the connected locally owned bookstore. He explained to me that the coffee shop used to be on the main street, but had to move when a T-shirt vendor offered to pay a higher rent. Thing is the T-shirt shop catering to tourists wasn’t locally owned and wouldn’t be open all year round.
This is when I learned that for every dollar spent at a locally owned business 45 cents stays in the community. For every dollar spent at a business owned by outsiders only 14 cents stays.
Second, a lesson from newspapers. You might recall I’m a newspaper junkie (or was, when you could buy more newspapers), and I found “The imperative of localism and local news” long . . . so I can appreciate your apprehension.
Here’s a takeaway. Newspaper readership began to decline long, long before the advent of the Internet. They quit serving the local community as they once had, not all at once but bit by bit. They quit being as local.
Not a good idea. Not for newspaper owners. Not for brewers.