Today Mission Local is launching the “Be Mission Market” an experiment in creating a local version of Etsy.
For those that don’t know – Etsy is an online store (think eBay) for handcrafted goods, vintage items and more. We reached out to local artisans and crafters in the Mission and using TinyPayMe as a third party site we’ve created a local marketplace where folks can buy goods from local sellers. Mission Local will take a small percentage.
Each month we’ll also have a featured seller. To launch we’re highlighting The Mission Live Local card (which you can buy at the “Be Mission Market“). This is a card you can purchase for $20 and for a full year will give you discounts at 30 businesses around the Mission (and that number is growing). It’s a fantastic replacement of any buy 10 get 1 free card and encourages buying locally.
The imputes for the “Be Mission Market” was actually the Live Local card. When I saw the launch of the Live Local card it struck me as an excellent endeavor for a hyperlocal news site. We’re in the business of selling advertising in the hope that is brings customers. Why not sell coupon cards that encourage customers as well. This is different than the Groupon craze. The Live Local card encourages patronizing local businesses repeatedly over the course of a year.
Of course the tough part about starting a local card program is recruiting businesses. Luckily the Live Local card already got started in the Mission. After speaking with the founder, we struck a deal to let Mission Local sell the card online for a commission.
But why stop with just selling the Live Local card? There are a slew of local artists, crafters and entrepreneurs in the Mission looking to tap into a Mission audience. Why not create a marketplace for them? That’s just what we did.
Right now the “Be Mission Market” is small. We are selling eight items that range from the Live Local card, hand-crafted earings, a local energy elixir and more. We are also selling Mission Local T-shirts and a guidebook to the Mission.
But we also have an open call to join the Be Mission Market. Hopefully we can continue to grow and feature enterprising local products every month.