Bring it to Tulsa
Thanks to our fabulous members for supporting the Business Development Crew and helping spark a conversation about desired changes in Tulsa.
Inaugural Campaign: Trader Joe's
Second Campaign: Uber
The Bring it to Tulsa initiative, a creation of the Business Development Crew, periodically seeks to prove Tulsa's viability for select businesses that have no Tulsa locations but are deemed by our members as particularly needed. Events surrounding the initiative are aimed at demonstrating the support for the target company and providing a glimpse of doing business in Tulsa.
The first Bring it to Tulsa campaign was wildly successful, as Tulsans purchased nearly $7,000 in merchandise from an online shop created by TYPros on behalf of national specialty grocer Trader Joe’s. The merchandise was then transported from the grocer’s nearest location in Kansas to a temporary storefront in Tulsa. Hundreds of people visited the temporary location in February 2013.
TYPros has more recently sought to attract Uber, a digital-based service that provides reliable, affordable and safe transportation any time of day.
About the initiativeWhat? Bring It To Tulsa is a grassroots business-attraction initiative. The Business Development Crew aims to educate TYPros' members about barriers-to-entry in opening certain stores to Oklahoma and finding creative ways to break through those barriers and show national retailers what Tulsa has to offer. Each campaign will focus on a different business; if you have a suggestion for an upcoming Bring It To Tulsa campaign, email the crew Leader to pitch your idea.
How? Using completely zany, audacious ideas like setting up an online store and pop-up pick-up point, we can highlights wants and needs in our community. For instance, our first Bring It To Tulsa highlighted both a desire for Trader Joe's to come to T-Town as well as the need for a full-service grocery store downtown and need to update Oklahoma's liquor laws to promote economic development.
When? These events will not be on a set schedule. We will organize and highlight 918-needs as possible. If you are interested in getting a certain business rolling down route-66 to T-Town, sign up for the crew newsletter to get meeting notifications.
Uber: OngoingThe concept behind Uber is simple: Riders who sign up online can select a pickup time and destination from their smartphones, pay digitally and be picked up by a vetted professional in a vehicle that matches the luxury preference of the rider. Drivers can work on their own time as much or as little as they want.
To attract Uber, Tulsa needs drivers and riders. Signing up is as simple as downloading Uber's smartphone app from your app store. And in honor of Bring it to Tulsa, Tulsa riders can receive a $20 discount with a special promo code.
To become a driver:
1. Visit partners.uber.com
2. Select “Not an Uber Partner”
3. Select “Tulsa” as the city you want to drive in
4. Complete the application
To be a rider:
1. Download the Uber app in your app store or visit https://www.uber.com/go/BRINGITTOTULSA
2. Enter Promotional Code: BRINGITTOTULSA
3. Enjoy a free ride ($20 discount)
For more information about the Uber campaign, click here.
The event highlighted the need for a downtown grocery store as well as a need for modernized liquor laws in Oklahoma. The event successful sparked a conversation; the event was covered in-depth through all Tulsa media and attracted more than a million visitors to the TYPros website, online shop and Facebook sites.
Defined need: A full-service downtown grocery store
Grocers like to open in areas of high residential density - whether that's through houses, lofts or apartments. Although downtown Tulsa has a growing residential population, it is still dominated by businesses and restaurants. However, the need for a grocery store is significant due to a lack of grocers in a wide area surrounding downtown, especially to the north.
During the pick-up pop-up shop, we requested shopper's zip codes so that we could track just how far people would drive for the right grocery store. Below is a map of our results. There are also outlying responders, but the general cluster reaches as far east as Claremore, as far north as Collinsville, as far west as Sand Springs and as far south as Bixby.
Defined need: Updated liquor laws
The Trader Joe's campaign was also intended to spark a conversation about updated liquor laws. Trader Joe's is a solid example of why. This national retailer has an $8.5 billion annual revenue stream that depends wine, beer and liquor sales. It's a solid business model, but few companies with such a model can afford to change just to break into Oklahoma market. Oklahoma must become friendlier to them. This would help our existing grocery stores, which could benefit from an additional revenue stream.
Participants of the inaugural Bring it to Tulsa campaign learned from Government Relations Crew leaders about the importance of modernizing liquor laws to stop inhibiting economic development. Shoppers had an opportunity to learn the basics of lobbying government for change and could even sign a letter to their legislators asking for consideration to modernize liquor laws. More than 100 attendees signed letters.
If you're interested in supporting this opportunity to update Oklahoma's outdated liquor laws, download this sample letter, add your information and pop in the mail. Legislators prefer personal mail! If you aren't sure who your legislator is, first click here and input your address to determine your house and senate district numbers, and then click here to find the senators and representatives for each district.