The digital campaign #ChooseBDA was launched on Sunday, May 3rd on Instagram and Facebook as an effort by a small group of business owners to help bring awareness to the major impact local small businesses have on the island’s overall economy. These founding business owners hail from different sectors of the economy and collectively saw the need for a conversation about a change in mindset from the consumers to the local business and all of Bermuda’s stakeholders.

Danielle Paynter from The Nab App notes, “The residents of Bermuda have so much power to protect and grow the Bermudian economy just by making a conscious decision to support local businesses. And, with the impact to our tourism industry, the strength in our numbers matters more than ever.” With an estimated $180 million dollars in lost revenue from cruise and air travel, and the other negative financial knock-on effects the COVID-19 pandemic will bring, Bermuda’s economy will take time to recover, but with changes in mindsets and behaviours, the hope and foundation of #chooseBDA is to help expedite that process.

“While these uncertain times have been distressing to many local business owners, new opportunities have arisen and by adapting to an online platform we can provide better services, allowing us to truly step up our game for our customers.” says Joanna Stapff from 1609 Design who has transitioned her business from a bricks and mortar store to online in a matter of days.

In order to spread this inclusive message, the founding group of #chooseBDA contacted their various networks of small business owners from all sectors with the request to adapt their social media profile photos to include a uniform upside-down triangle and to post a pre-designed #chooseBDA image. Over the course of the day, over 150 businesses followed suit. “This was an incredible showcase of solidarity and goes to show how much we all truly want to support one another” notes Laura Farge-Lowe from Island Trading. While the campaign launched on Sunday, the plan is for individuals and businesses to continue to adapt their profile photos and help share #chooseBDA messages and content.

As efforts continue to protect Bermuda’s people from this global pandemic, #chooseBDA aims to educate fellow residents about the impact of local businesses, encourage businesses to take on new challenges and present great offers and services to consumers, and inspire action to create the future we want to build for ourselves, our family and our island.