Funny Money Is Serious Business

According to The Denver Post, the town of Crested Butte, CO has come up with a creative way to support local merchants–they issued their own money, a.k.a. scrip.
BUTTE_BUX.JPG
Consumers purchase Butte Bucks at a 20 percent discount at the Crested Butte Visitor’s Center, up to 100 a day for $80, until the supply runs out.
Participating merchants pay $30 to market the program and agree to accept Bucks as they would dollars. The merchants then redeem the Butte Bucks for U.S. currency at the Chamber of Commerce.
“It is the ultimate protectionist tool. You can only spend it where they say you can spend it,” said Frank Trotter, president of Everbank Direct, a Florida bank that specializes in foreign currency accounts.
I bring this to our attention because it occurs to me that this idea could be executed by any number of brands like McDonald’s, Target, Starbucks, etc.

About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. After working for seven agencies in five states and freelancing for several more, I ventured out on my own in 2009. Today, as head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon, I'm focused on providing effective integrated marketing solutions to mid-market clients.

Comments

  1. Alternative Currencies, gift economies, and barter economies provide a means of exchange outside of the “lie-agreed-upon” valuation of national currencies.

  2. People have been doing this in Detroit for the last few months. http://www.detroitscrip.org/

  3. “… this idea could be executed by any number of brands like McDonald’s, Target, Starbucks, etc.”
    Isn’t that the point of gift card/brand credit card “rewards” programs?
    The brands you’ve mentioned have implemented either or both.