#whoneedswalmart

To say Rock Islanders were a wee bit miffed about city officials blowing $15 million and getting stiffed by Walmart is like saying Bix Beiderbecke played around with music as a little hobby.

The outrage has been justifiably hot. As I said in my last column, the city overspent by millions buying up decrepit properties on 11th street ostensibly to create space for a new Walmart which didn’t materialize. That money could’ve, and should’ve, gone to help already existing businesses owned by locals or to help local entrepreneurs looking to start up locally-owned businesses in the area. After all, why not invest in someone in the Quad-Cities who is going to stay here, spend money here and keep their business here, rather than throwing money at big box billionaire carpetbaggers who regard the community as little more than flyover country?

As such, I’m starting a hashtag movement, #whoneedswalmart? Whenever you share one of our articles about a great Rock Island event or business, please add that hashtag. Show them we’re a great community that can and will certainly thrive without the Walton family dropping shop here.

I’ve lived in Rock Island for more than two decades now. I own property here. I pay taxes here. I, like the rest of you, am not happy with this development. I love Rock Island, that’s why, after moving from Chicago, I stayed here. I think it’s a fantastic city with a ton of untapped potential.

And as digital media director, chief of content and advertising director for QuadCities.com, I’m in a position to do something about it. So we at QuadCities.com are doing something.

As I mentioned last week, I’m going to be featuring a number of Rock Island events, businesses and restaurants in stories on our site. We’ve already been doing that for the most part, but we’re going to make an even greater effort to support our local shops and people, the things that make us a great community.

And we’re also going to put our money where our mouth is, so to speak.

For the next month, we’re going to drastically cut our advertising rates, so that we can get as many Rock Island businesses (and Quad-Cities businesses in general, this isn’t just for Rock Island, we want to help everyone) on our site and give you a financial break that will allow you to advertise on the fastest growing media outlet in the Quad-Cities. We’re projected to have over four million hits on our site this year, and that number, and projection, just keeps growing. Based upon our hits for September so far, we could surpass five million. And we want those people to see you and your business and discover how amazing it is.

So this is what we’re offering:

For less than 50 bucks a month you can get a ton of exposure on our site. Seriously – for less than two dollars a day, less money than you spend on your morning coffee – you can advertise your business on our site in a HUGE way.

For less than $50 a month, here’s what you get:

  1. A Business of the Week article featured on our home page for one week, and scrollable for four more weeks.
  2. A Home Page Featured Business Listing for three months.
  3. A Featured Listing with your logo and a link to your website for one year. This displays above the regular business listings on pages and search.
  4. Inclusion of your customer provided text, photo AND video on your individual business listing page.
  5. Five keyword phrases (i.e. loans, mortgages, Christmas club, annuity, insurance) on your listing for better site search.
  6. A social media post on Facebook and Twitter linking to your Business of the Week article and your individual business listing page.

In addition to that, we’re cutting ALL of our ad rates from now until the end of September, giving everyone HALF OFF of all our community partnership and banner ads.

Hey, it’s not $15 million, but it’s a show of faith.

We believe in Rock Island.

We believe in Quad-Cities businesses.

And we want to be your site for free, fun, local entertainment and your go-to spot for cool places to see and be around the Quad-Cities.

As I said last week, together we are the community, and together we can build a better community.

This is my way of helping that happen. If you’re interested in taking advantage of our offer, we’re happy to help you get started. Just drop me a line at Sean@quadcities.com and we’ll get things rolling. If not, cool, as always you and everyone else is very welcome to check out all of the great stories on local events, creators, businesses and arts and leisure outlets, always for free, always without popups or any other annoyances, here on QuadCities.com.

And as always, if you’re interested in joining the team here as a writer, photographer or videographer, or if you have an event you’d like to get promoted on our site, you can contact me at that email as well.

We want to be your online community for arts, entertainment and leisure in Rock Island, and the Quad-Cities.

So, hey, #whoneedswalmart? We’ve got plenty of great businesses and awesome attractions right here already.

Let’s shine that spotlight on them!

 

Sean Leary is an author, director, artist, musician, producer and entrepreneur who has been writing professionally since debuting at age 11 in the pages of the Comics Buyers Guide. An honors graduate of the University of Southern California masters program, he has written almost 30 books including the best-sellers The Arimathean, Every Number is Lucky to Someone and We Are All Characters.