In a 2017 survey of small business owners in the U.S., 90 percent of businesses reported that Amazon is having a negative impact on their revenue. It’s also been widely reported that the overall number of small businesses has declined across the country in recent years.
This is often attributed to the prevalence of online shopping through Amazon and other major retailers and service providers. It’s a phenomenon that’s disrupted local businesses from retail to insurance, home security and everything in between.
Still, on the North Fork, many local residents and entrepreneurs continue to pursue their dream of owning independent retail shops and other small businesses. And customers from across the region often seek out opportunities to shop local.
We’ll hear from small business owners on why they went into business for themselves and how they’re navigating disruption at our next Times Review Talks event at The Vineyards at Aquebogue on Wednesday, June 26 from noon to 2 p.m. We’ll also hear from other professionals who have helped small businesses grow and individuals who go out of their way to shop local when it’s sometimes easier to do otherwise.
Panelists include marketing specialist Yvonne Leiblein, who will give tips for ways local businesses can reach a wider audience online to combat digital disruption. She’s also a champion for shopping locally, and along with our other panelists, will discuss ways consumers can think local first.
Nancy Messer of Bridgehampton National Bank will discuss success stories in small business lending and give advice for entrepreneurs looking to start a business locally.
Several small business owners from different arenas will also join us, including Rena Wilhelm of The Weathered Barn, Stephan Mazzella of Mint clothing boutique, Paul Romanelli of Suffolk Security Systems and Beth Hanlon of Allstate insurance.
The discussion will be moderated by Times Review Media Group content director Grant Parpan.
Times Review Talks are panel discussions mostly on issues our communities are facing with the people who best understand the concerns and, in some cases, are in a position to make a difference. Upcoming talks are expected to cover the topics of school enrollment in Southold Town, the future of our hospitals and more.
The two-hour events are held monthly. The $30 ticket price ($20 for Times Review subscribers) includes lunch. Space is limited, so we recommend purchasing your tickets in advance at bit.ly/TRTalks_JUNE.
This month’s sponsors are Riverhead Ford Lincoln and Riverhead Buick GMC, and Suffolk Security Systems.
To learn more about becoming a sponsor of Times Review Talks, contact Sonja Reinholt Derr at 631-354-8050 or [email protected].