Word-Of-Mouth Helps Bring Business Back To Moore Establishments
MOORE, Oklahoma - Locally owned companies have been struggling to survive following the May 20 tornado.
Some were on the brink of closing their doors, but have recently seen a surge in customers. All of the store owners agree, word-of-mouth about their struggles is responsible for the increase in business.
A week after visiting an empty Harry Bear's at lunch time, the scene is completely different. Nearly all of the tables were full at noon on Friday.
"I would say we just about doubled, maybe a little more," said owner Jane Mitchell.
That turnaround is attributed to people spreading the word that businesses in Moore are open and in need of customers.
Melissa Gray, a stay-at-home mom from Norman saw the need and started a Facebook page to encourage people in the area to shop local. She said she saw Harry Bear's story on News 9 and felt like she needed to do something to help out.
"I can't go out to a field where there's hazards and clean and try to keep an eye on them. I watch other people's children also," she explained. "So this is a great, easy way and it shows my children how important it is to shop local and support local businesses."
One business feeling the boost from Gray's page is the Donut shop at SW 4th and Telephone. Gray's post about the business was shared nearly a thousand times and some 85,000 people on Facebook have seen it, according to Gray.
"He's selling out in the middle of the morning so it's very exciting to see."
The owner of the business agreed. He said in the few weeks after the tornado hit, he had virtually nobody come by the shop.
Gray said that shopping in Moore is one of the easiest ways people can help out. With so many people displaced after the tornado, restaurants and shops have not had their normal clients. Even spending a few dollars helps.
This is good news for these small businesses down here in Moore, but here's the deal. It's going to take months for families to recover from the tornado, which means a dip in the number of clients in the area.