Scheme launched in Midhurst to increase the reach of small businesses
A new scheme which allows businesses to be ‘recognised and trusted over a wider area’ is proving successful in Midhurst.
Entrepreneur Tillie Fredericks, who previously worked in construction, said The Mustcard membership scheme encourages people to use local independent businesses ‘as opposed to shopping online’.
She said: “The scheme works by allowing small businesses the opportunity to appear on a website that will be recognised and trusted over a wider area. As we grow and build members we will give these businesses the ability to provide an offer to a closed market for free. The businesses have their own profile page which holds all the information about them, links to their website and social media accounts and a review from me.
“I spend my time advertising us and all our independents via social media and at local events. The aim is that businesses change their offer on a regular basis which makes it more fun and exciting for the members whilst making the scheme profitable for the businesses.”
Tillie said The Mustcard was ‘created from my passion to discover new and unique brands that surround us’. She added: “I love spending all my time exploring every nook and cranny of this beautiful countryside, sourcing everything and anything that I think is fabulous. I aim to make local people look outwards on how to support the traditional independent businesses before they are lost for good.
“These days we are spoilt with an abundance of creative micro businesses that form the backbone of our economy. By encouraging people to spend their money locally we can help keep our neighbourhood beautiful and thriving.”
Having previously founded, developed and run a small luxury business, Tillie said she knows that running micro businesses is hard and ‘keeping it fresh and flourishing in this market is even harder’.
“Many businesses suffer from growing pains as it can be hard to make a mark on a particular slice of the market,” she explained.
“After deciding to move my family to Sussex for a better life I recognised a gap in the market for a loyalty card that is designed to encourage people to love local living. It gives locals a reason to stay loyal and it gives local businesses the ability to reach a wider audience. It’a a win, win for all.”
Tillie said Mustcard ‘only recommends businesses that we approve and we think our members would like’. She said: “We do not charge the businesses and therefore our loyalty remains with the members and making sure they receive offers from only well recommended places. We only launched at the beginning of August but we currently have 120 local offers and these are growing daily. “The subscription is only £19.99 per year and £1 goes to our chosen local charity, The Haslemere Hub.”
During the week of December 9 to 15, Tillie will be donating 100 per cent of profits to charity and ‘will be setting up in several locations over Haslemere, Midhurst and Grayshott’.
She added: “This money will be used to provide food and presents to local food banks and churches in the area to go to those less fortunate.
Find out more at www.themustcard.com.