Local media employs hundreds of local salespeople, content developers, journalists and support employees who spend their income and tax dollars in our community. Whether businesses choose to invest a portion of their marketing budget with local print or broadcast media, they should feel good about the investment because buying local media is as important as purchasing products and services from other local businesses.

Facebook is not local, nothing about it is local. There are no local salespeople or support people, there is no brick and mortar commitment to the community, and the money you spend with Facebook ends up in Menlo Park, Calif. Facebook doesn’t fund our local schools or food banks. It doesn’t provide giveaways to organizations for raffles and doesn’t really know who you are, what your business goals are or what marketing problems you are dealing with. And Facebook doesn’t provide the local audience like local media can.

Every day, thousands of households purchase newspapers, tune in to local television or radio programs, or pick up niche publications in racks. Facebook has gone the other way when it comes to organic reach. In 2015, according to a study done by Bonsey Jaden, the average organic Facebook post reached 5.4% of your followers. In 2018, it dropped to 1.2%.

Local media invests in journalists who report on local news and happenings. We produce our print or on-air products every day to serve the community where we live.

We want you to stay in business and thrive. Your success is our success. We have a vested interest in our community, the health of it, the wealth of it and the education of it. We want people to shop local, buy local and live local. It’s our passion.

Over the last few weeks we’ve been hearing about local businesses that are quite serious about getting the word out on shopping local and supporting local business. We agree! Whether we are talking about consumers purchasing products and services or whether it is businesses purchasing media, think local first.

When you invest with local media, you keep the money right here, with the people who care about your success.

Local media will be here with you. We are businesses like you and share your fate. Let’s make a commitment to supporting each other during this time and moving forward for the community’s sake.

Rickman is publisher of the Eau Claire Leader-Telegram.