DTI launches #flexPHridays in support of local products

Louella Desiderio - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) launched yesterday a campaign to encourage consumers to support local businesses.

Called #flexPHridays, the DTI said the campaign seeks to leverage on the rising “flex” culture online where social media users share their purchases on their accounts or different online communities.

With the country having over 76 million unique social media users or approximately 71 percent of the population, the DTI sees an opportunity to tap the online community and get them to support local businesses and products, as well as to promote such in the global market.

Under the campaign, the aim is to make it a weekly habit every Friday for social media users to inspire purchase of local goods by sharing online a Filipino product they are using.

“Stimulating economic recovery is a monumental task, and we want to invite and involve the entire online Filipino community in this endeavor. The spirit of bayanihan is alive and strong, and this digital #flexPHridays campaign will help champion the beauty and quality of Filipino products in the digital space,” Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez said.

“This campaign aims to drive awareness that in buying local products and supporting our micro, small and medium enterprises, we are providing jobs to countless Filipinos and developing the entrepreneurial drive of our countrymen,” he said.

The campaign wants to promote all local consumer goods industries including fashion and apparel, textiles, gift items, furniture, food and beverages, accessories and décor, houseware and fixtures, and technology.

Through the campaign, DTI wants to help in increasing the discoverability of local brands and products online as studies show majority of consumers search brands online before making a purchase.

“We are proud to be part of this campaign and this fully utilizes not only the local Filipino community but our countrymen abroad to advocate for Filipino products. We envision that this campaign will not only develop our local economy but also position our country as a sourcing destination for a variety of export products,” Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions executive director Pauline Suaco-Juan said.

Apart from consumers, the DTI is also encouraging businesses to participate by using the hashtag on their campaigns, engaging their endorsers to post, and also providing benefits to loyal customers who use the hashtag and mention their brand.

“The campaign was designed so that it can be easily integrated in existing marketing campaigns of companies. We wanted to provide opportunities for the development of promotional and loyalty programs so companies can identify loyal customers and reward their patronage and support,” Trade Undersecretary Abdulgani Macatoman said.

To take part in the campaign, one simply needs to take a photo or video of a Filipino product, share on social media and use the hashtag #flexPHridays.

Participants are also encouraged to share how they learned about the brand, where they bought it and why they like it.

“We call on everyone to use the hashtag #FlexPHridays and wear something local during Fridays. We encourage you to post your locally-produced goods on your Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Tiktok. Hopefully this transforms into a habit or culture of patronizing locally-made products as this will help restimulate demand that will bring back more jobs needed in the recovery,” Lopez said.

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