#AdoptAShopYEG brings love—and business—to local businesses

ATB's partnership with local influencer Linda Hoang puts money in the hands of local shops and entrepreneurs.

By Erika Stark 24 November 2020 3 min read

ATB partnered with Edmonton influencer, blogger and entrepreneur Linda Hoang for the #AdoptAShopYEG: ATB Neighbourhood Hop in support of local Edmonton businesses. 

As an influencer, entrepreneur and blogger, supporting local businesses is part of Linda Hoang’s DNA. As an organization that was started more than 80 years ago to help Albertans through hard times, it’s in ATB’s DNA, too.

And if the results of the #AdoptAShopYEG: ATB Neighbourhood Hop are any indication, it’s evident that Albertans are just as hardwired to support their neighbours by supporting their businesses.

During November, Hoang leveraged her social influence and large follower base to encourage Edmontonians to “adopt” one of eight neighbourhoods in the city. Based on nominations she received from community members, Hoang curated individual itineraries for the different neighbourhoods, each featuring eight local businesses. Those who signed up committed to spending at least $60 across three different shops in their chosen neighbourhood.

Hoang had encouraged similar neighbourhood adoptions back in July—173 people spent more than $8,000 at 50 small businesses in Edmonton. She says she continued to hear from people looking for another chance to adopt a shop and support the businesses that had been impacted by COVID-19.

‘A natural fit’

Seeking to raise the profile of the initiative and reach more people, Hoang approached ATB to see if we would be interested in being a partner this time around.

“When I think about organizations in Alberta that give back and want to help small business owners, ATB comes to mind immediately,” said Hoang. “ATB helps build vibrant communities, so it was a really natural and obvious fit.”

From ATB’s perspective, the decision to partner with Hoang was equally natural, said Jesse Yuen, the Director of Marketing for ATB’s brand team.

“We love the spirit that she brings,” he said. “Linda’s job is very deeply rooted in values that are aligned to what we do at ATB.”

It took less than three days for Albertans to sign up for all 200 initial spots (25 in each neighbourhood) Hoang had opened for #AdoptAShopYEG. The immediate, overwhelming response prompted her to open additional spots. Many of those, too, filled up within a few more days.

“It was a really good signal to me that people want to help small business owners,” said Hoang, adding that half of the businesses involved in the initiative were owned by people of colour or minorities. “People want to help the businesses they love stay in business.”

‘It’s about people’

All told, the initiative led to $17,849 spent across 64 local businesses in Edmonton—plus another $5,000 in Visa/MasterCard gift cards ATB randomly awarded as prizes to participants, as an incentive to go and spend even more in their chosen neighbourhood.

It's not surprising to see Albertans get behind an initiative to support their local businesses and their neighbours,” Yuen said.

He added that it’s important for ATB to meet Albertans where they’re at during these challenging times.

“At the heart of everything we're doing, it’s about people,” he explained. “Beyond ensuring that we have the right financial products, services and advice for Albertans, we also want to make sure we leverage our place as a member of the community to bring people together to support one another.”*

While Hoang acknowledged that people don’t need a specific initiative to support local, having a structure like #AdoptAShopYEG in place can generate excitement and inspire folks to go out and spend at small businesses.

Yuen agreed.

“We want to help keep the businesses we love in business,” Yuen said. “That means getting money into the hands of business owners by rallying people people who have the means to support those small businesses.”

Hoang said she plans to bring back the campaign again in the New Year.

“There’s never not going to be a need to support your local economy,” she said. “I hope that the spirit of all this is that people will continue to shop small and support their communities once the initiative is over.”

Shop local and support local businesses

Just because #AdoptAShopYEG has wrapped up doesn’t mean you can’t still support the 64 businesses involved in the initiative. Check out our latest Instagram post to see each neighbourhood itinerary.

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