I Need a Recommendation for…
By Rande Davis
It probably won’t surprise you that I have been thinking about the advertisers in the Monocle lately. So many of them have been stalwart supporters of the newspaper over the more than ten years we have been bringing the news and stories of the day (past and present) to our readers in and around town, and we are so grateful. Without them, there simply is no newspaper. Based on the humbling feedback we get so often from readers about how much they like the Monocle, we trust that our readers are grateful to our advertisers, as well.
Looking over our list of advertisers, it is not surprising to find they are the Who’s Who of the contributing businesses in town. You see them on our pages, but you know what, you most likely will see their names as the sponsors and donors for all kinds of good causes in town from ads in high school play pamphlets to the backs of fundraising t-shirts. Our business community contributes to the town’s good causes with cash, discounts, products and services, or other forms of help. Without them, the civic groups, sporting programs, educational ventures, and community organizations that serve us would be really hurting. In a sense, without them, there really is no community here, just a place for slumber.
I have been on the board of directors of the Poolesville Area Chamber of Commerce for many years now, and consequently I have come to understand that the organization’s call to Shop Local is more than a catchy slogan. It is a vital message for a healthy community.
Every once in awhile, someone on Facebook pipes up with a request for personal recommendations for a business or service. If you are new to the area, you may be uncertain as to whom to call from our list of advertisers, those listed in the PACC phone directory, or on its website (poolesvillechamber.com). As a newcomer you most likely came from a much bigger community where people and businesses can operate more anonymously—not so in Poolesville. Any business in Poolesville that has been around for a number of years is one you pretty much can count on. How come? After being in town since 1976, the way I see it, we are too small and close-knit of a community for a business with bad products or service to survive. Here, word gets out even without the internet. That’s not to say people don’t have preferences. Tastes do vary, and no one can please everybody all the time. It is to say, however, that if they have been in business a long time in our area, they have already passed through a strong filter of broad customer satisfaction. You want references? Trust me, they have references. Just ask them. At the very least, they deserve your call.
With that in mind, I want to alter the PACC slogan a bit. From now on, I think it should be Shop Local First. When you give a local business a chance first, you not only initiate a relationship with a business that has proven to please most in the area over time, but in a very real way, you are helping your community by ensuring services and jobs. By the way, forgive me for being a bit self-serving, but when you call one of our advertisers, let them know you are calling because you saw their ad in the Monocle and that you appreciate their support of your local hometown newspaper. As I always say when people tell me how much they appreciate the Monocle, “Thank you and be sure to tell our advertisers.”