Friday, February 03, 2012

Reviews and Promotions


Unless otherwise stated, all reviews/promotions/shares/giveaways are not paid for or solicited by the stores, restaurants, artisans, or other businesses that I talk about here.

If someone has donated a product for review or to be given away I will say as much in the post, it does not however affect my opinion. If I do not like a product I will say so. If I am giving something away and I haven't tested it I will say so. If someone pays for advertising space it will be in the form of an actual ad and not some sort of phony internet infomercial where I pretend to love something. Because that's not me and I won't do that to you.

I do this because I want to share the things I love. 99 times out of 100 these people don't know about the blog. I have started to ask if it is OK to take photos of places because I do know how sensitive some people are about how they are presented on the internet and what image is being put out there.

I'm doing this because I want to help small businesses succeed and grow.

For those of you who have never owned or worked for a small local business you cannot imagine how hard it is to come up with funds to advertise and find other ways to bring customers in. It can be so frustrating to have the best food, product, or service in the world but no one comes because they simply don't know about it and you don't have the money to get ads out where people can hear/see them. In these soul-crushing economic times, our small local businesses need all the help they can get to stay afloat. Everyone is struggling right now, businesses are struggling to find ways to avoid laying people off, they are trying to stay profitable and keep the doors open, and it is no easy task. I just want to help in any way possible.

We love the travel channel in our house. It allows us to live vicariously through the show hosts since we can't travel any more. The great thing about these shows is that the majority of the travel channel hosts are not eating at places like McDonald's or Olive Garden or Chili's or Outback Steakhouse...they are eating at funky little local spots that are unique to the areas they are visiting. When I travelled the best part was being able to find a tiny but amazing restaurant all run by several generations of one family, or stepping into a little shop off the beaten path and finding unique stuff you won't find in the souvenir shops on the main road.

It is local individuality and flavor that makes a place special and gives it an identity. If all we support are big box chains that is what we will become, an anonymous and faceless suburban sprawl that is identical to all other faceless suburban sprawls across the country. I don't want to be another statistic in a corporate chain's demographic. I want to know the people behind the counter and I want them to know me, I want that quickly disappearing sense of community. Do you? Because there are still wonderful places where you can find that. At the risk of dating myself with this TV reference, you can still find a spot to be "Noooooooooorm!", and you know what? It feels pretty darn good.

I'm planning on starting a feature of this blog and it will be called "Cache Valley Business Of The Week". I will stop by a local business take a few snaps, find out what they have to offer and do a profile. You can then decide if you want to try them or not and please feel free to leave a review here so others know how your experience was. If you have a local business and would like me to feature you, all you have to do is email me (nachista {@} yahoo {dot} com) or comment on this thread. I will happily share your information out there for everyone to see. If you want to buy an ad or place a button on the site, use the email about to contact me.

I'm also floating the idea of starting another feature called "Ask Aunt Marion". Some of you know my Aunt Marion, she is crazy but in a good way. I aspire to be "Crazy Aunt Suzzzz" to my own nieces and nephews. Everyone who meets her, loves her. She gives great advice and is not afraid to tell it like it is. I'm still trying to talk her into it. So if you have a question or a dilemma and you want some sound, old school, no-nonsense advice, send me a note and I'll get you an answer.

And now, dear readers, I'm am going back to bed because I have caught that nasty stomach bug that has been going around and all I want is to sleep for the next 10 hours.

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