Downtown Blacksburg Inc. starts a cash mob
Updated: This post was updated on Feb. 20 at 5:47 p.m. to include rules for cash mob participants.
Blacksburg is now home to the nation’s latest trend – cash mobs. In an effort to complement their Small Business Saturday and BUY EAT LIVE Local campaigns, Downtown Blacksburg Inc. (DBI) will host its first “cash mob” at 5:48 p.m. on March 8.
There are several Cash Mob groups around the country. Cash Mobs are designed “to encourage people to go into small, local businesses and spend their money, en masse, to give the business owner a little bit of economic stimulus,” according to the Cash Mob website.
DBI has not announced its first cash mob location, but will do so a week before the event. DBI has created a Twitter account for its newest initiative – @CMdtblacksburg. The group plans to make an announcement through this Twitter page, along with their website and Facebook pages, telling members where to meet. When every member arrives at the meeting place, the destination store will be revealed.
“We hope it will encourage people to get to know their downtown community, to visit stores they may have never tried before and to connect with new people,” DBI Director Laureen Blakemore said. “It is a fun way to get to know those small business owners who are your neighbors.”
A member of DBI, Dr. Steve Jacobs, read an article online about cash mobs and presented it to DBI’s Marketing Committee. “It is a natural fit for us as an extension of our BUY EAT LIVE Local campaign,” Blakemore said.
Blakemore said cash mob events will happen at least once a month.
For participants, there are three rules, Blakemore added. Spend up to $20, meet three people you didn’t know before and have fun. According to Blakemore, after the cash mob completes their shopping spree, the group will meet at a local restaurant for a celebratory snack or drink.
Not only does the cash mob event provide local businesses with financial gain and exposure, but it allows for patrons to socialize.
“It is about changing the way people view local businesses, encouraging consumers to shop where their money can stay in the community,” Blakemore said.
“It is about having a positive impact on your own community.”
For more information about Downtown Blacksburg Inc.’s cash mob, click here.
The Roanoke Times | 381-8627
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