Rural Tech Startup Wins Award

New “Shop My Town” concept to revitalise Aussie towns was recognised with it’s first award, only six months after starting. The tech marketing hybrid designed for small towns received the Judges Highly Commended Award for Professional Services at the Lockyer Valley Business Awards on Saturday night.

“We started in the Lockyer Valley and are now stretching through Toowoomba and out to the Western Downs” says founder Melody Jarvis. “The vision is to save Aussie towns for the future of our children.”

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Lockyer Valley Mayor Steve Jones praised the good work of Shop My Town in helping to get other businesses thinking about how they promote themselves in the marketplace.

“We’ve certainly moved on from the days of the chalkboard out the front of the shop being the best way to advertise your business and the work that Melody Jarvis and her Shop My Town team are doing was rightly recognised at Saturday night’s awards ceremony.

“I fully support the concept that Melody has put in place in helping other businesses to promote themselves online and encouraging shoppers to think locally as much as possible.

“I congratulate Shop My Town on their recognition which was well deserved,” Mayor Jones Said.

The cornerstone of the idea is it’s simplicity, built around bolstering the resources available to small business. “We know 1/3 of these rural populations are active on Facebook, and our experience in regional marketing means we can train small business to reach them. We are talking as locals, who understand how small towns work. The city thinking around marketing just doesn’t work here!”

Creating a one page website on a regional platform removes the hard work for small business. Then a strategic plan is individually created.

“We assess what their needs are, and how they communicate best.” Says Melody “It may be a Youtube Channel, or perhaps they like to write and communicate through pictures, so a blog is more suitable. Because we build this around the business, and train them how to use it, we guarantee their success.”

Today there are 44 businesses using the program, and seeing the results of reaching out to the community online.

“Since advertising on Shop My Town, there are more customers walking through the door, we have definitely noticed a difference. Melody has motivated me and is making a positive change that we all need.” Says Chantal from Croziers Electrical Gatton.

The concept has been systemised so it can travel to any region in Australia. Employing a local “Town Connector” enables the team to understand each community, so it can be rolled with success. It’s great to see how we are also creating jobs in rural communities, that were not there before.

Melody Jarvis can be contacted on 0400661874 or melody@shopmytown.com.au