Friday, March 31, 2017

Small Town Specialist Offers Advice for Growth

Deb Brown of SaveYour.Town, left, was introduced at a luncheon meeting Wednesday by Rhonda Nicholson of Perfectly Posh Boutique, right. The event was sponsored by the Sallisaw Chamber of Commerce to discuss ideas on improving business.

With lightheartedness, laughter and a good deal of common sense, Deb Brown of SaveYour.Town spoke to Sallisaw business owners Wednesday.

Sponsored by the Sallisaw Chamber of Commerce, Brown’s Tips and Advice from a Small Town Specialist offered numerous ideas to attract customers and business to Sallisaw.

She began by asking those attending what they would like for the community. Answers included expanded business, jobs so children will stay in the area, a movie theater, and a good community in which to raise children.

Brown offered the following advice:

-Work together

-Use old school houses or empty buildings if available

-Have local artists display works in local businesses

-Have pop up galleries for various arts in the downtown area

-Change laws so empty buildings don’t stay empty

-Host a tour of empty buildings available for lease or sale

-Have Chamber Champions help with upkeep of buildings

-Take over the rental of empty buildings

-Change the Stinkin’ Thinkin’ Mindset

-Add events such as Music in the Park with an open mike; hold a parade; hold an Open Your Heart event when retailers stay open late one evening and donate a portion of profits to a favorite charity; quarterly town hall meetings; county-wide tours; craft days when crafters gather to complete projects; organize a JunqueFest flea market; hold a photo walk; market walking trails; and arrange tours of local businesses and industries.

Brown suggested the town’s promoters “Don’t go it alone,” and work with other communities on regional attraction. She said if an expert is needed, contact one. Create lists of businesses, services and opportunities.

Take note of Time-of-Day Marketing, and when various individuals do their shopping. Stay open one evening a week. Use technology to market products.

“You have fabulous stores here,” Brown pointed out, advising business owners to promote what is already available.

Brown’s visual presentation may be seen at

Sally Maxwell, Senior News Director

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 Green Leaf Properties

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