Politicizing your New Jersey business? Here’s a little message for you (Opinion)
Stores with a political agenda are nothing new, both here in New Jersey, as well as nationwide. And although there seems to be a huge uptick with this type of store in recent years, it's quite normal to see this happen when it comes to popular political candidates.
Recently, my colleague Kylie Moore let you know about a brand new "Let's Go Brandon" store that opened up in Toms River. Now yes, this location might seem a little extreme for some, but again, it's to be expected to a certain degree.
But aside from that location, you'll find even more stores like this scattered throughout the Garden State. Some people love them, and others take offense. But that's politics, and always has been.
Now, there is something else that's been happening throughout New Jersey that seems to be a bit more than the opening of a political store. Some businesses in New Jersey seem to be making it known what side of the aisle they're affiliated with.
One such business is located in Hazlet. Prior to Donald Trump becoming president, this place was just an ordinary garden nursery. It still is today, but it now markets itself with quite the red lean.
Not quite like the "Let's Go Brandon" store in Toms River, but the same passion is there. And instead of T-shirts and bumper stickers, it's tulips and mulch.
Even the slogan of Dutch & Olga's Greenhouse goes along with the theme. It's time to make that garden of yours great again.
This business is just one example of what others are currently doing across the Garden State. Although the nature of what is sold at the businesses isn't political, the way the businesses are marketing themselves is.
And it doesn't have to be extreme, either. It could be as simple as flying a flag for all to see.
In this case, we're politicizing the garden. I mean, why can't every vegetable and flower in the garden represent your favorite candidate?
Again, this particular business is just an example. So if you're a business owner that chooses to do this, here's a little message I have just for you.
Keep doing what you're doing. Much like the garden center above, it's completely your choice how you want to represent yourself.
But with that said, please also keep this in mind. You're most likely alienating some of your potential customers.
Unlike a store that brands itself based on a candidate or political party that would only get a specific group of customers, a business such as a garden center might do more than that.
Not only is it already specific to people who are looking to garden, but that group who would shop is divided even more based on party or candidate affiliation. This wouldn't necessarily apply to all customers, but there would be some who would disagree strongly enough with the political lean that they'd avoid shopping at the business over that.
Honestly? It's their choice to choose not to shop at your establishment, just as much as it is your choice to politicize it. And you know what? There's nothing wrong with either.
Look, politics are ugly. Always has been, and always will be. So I'm sure those who do decide to make their business political know what they're doing.
As for me? I personally am not a fan of businesses that politicize themselves. Never have been, regardless of whether the lean is red, blue, or purple. But you know what? That's OK as well, as I know I can't be the only one who feels that day.
But if you do decide to politicize your New Jersey business, I find nothing wrong with it and encourage you to continue doing so. But please keep in mind that your decision to politicize a non-political business will most likely prevent some from shopping at your establishment.