A free platform for creators to sell, exhibit, and engage with local communities
Introducing The Commons by Neighborhood Goods, a new initiative this summer to provide a free platform for brands, restaurateurs, musicians, and artists whose businesses have been affected by COVID-19 to engage with customers, reinvigorate businesses, bring people back to work, and, generally, do everything we can to support local communities.
We’re opening applications for free space at each of our Neighborhood Goods locations. While we’ll continue to feature our typical world-class line-up of brands, The Commons allows us to make space for local and national brands who’ve had their businesses adversely affected by COVID-19, whether through wholesale orders being canceled, revenue or logistics disruptions, or otherwise.
Meanwhile, we’re opening our kitchens to feature food from local chefs to help bring their restaurants back to life, hosting live music in-store to bring musicians back to work, putting together job fairs with local businesses for those who’ve lost work (including our own team), and placing work from local artists on our walls.
We want to provide a platform for all in an effort to offer an avenue back to normalcy; a place for people to come together, safely, in support of their community.
And this is just the start. In addition to announcing participating brands, artists, and chefs over the coming weeks, we'll also be unveiling new initiatives, sponsors, collaborations, and more.
Together, we're in good company.
Update (7/22/2020): Applications and nominations for 2020's edition of The Commons are now concluded. If you'd like to chat about working with us, you can still reach out any time.
How does it work?
We typically charge a monthly fee, in addition to a percentage of sales for our participating brands. But, for those of you who've seen a significant drop in sales, lost wholesale orders, or otherwise, we're offering to feature you in-store for no fee and a much more modest percentage than typical. Whatever the arrangement, we'll ensure it's appropriate for your company size and product type. (But, of course, we have to ensure our people are paid and our bills are paid, too.) For those who are stable and making it through this time, please consider reaching out via our typical application.
We have fully-operational kitchens and liquor license-equipped bars in each of our three stores. For those of you who've lost your restaurants or your staff and are looking for a creative way to start generating some capital to get back up and running, we'd like to open our kitchen to you to host pop-up versions of your restaurant in-store. We'll provide the space and support with personnel. And we'll only ask for, as with our brands in The Commons, a small portion of sales.
For our communities
With The Commons running for several months, we intend to open our doors — at no cost — to host job fairs for local employers. We intend to host communal events, as we've always done, to reunite people. We intend to cover our walls in local artwork and fill our rooms with live local music. We can't wait to (safely) meet back up in a few months.
Questions & Answers
Last updated 5/29/2020
Q: What happens if too many apply and you run out of space in store?
A: We’re going to work to accommodate as many brands and creators as possible. To do so, we will likely end up hosting a number of phases or cohorts of The Commons, so we can provide adequate opportunity for brands and ensure a good mix for consumers.
Q: How long will this initiative run?
A: Our goal is to run this exactly as long as we were forced to close our stores to the public. Maybe a little bit longer, depending on demand.
Q: I’m not a brand, but would like to find a way to be involved and support this effort.
A: We’re looking for all kinds of creative ways to work with organizations, service providers, consumer-packaged goods companies, and more. Please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re interested.
Q: I'm interested in sponsoring The Commons. Is that possible?
A: Maybe! We'd love to find some like-minded partners to help us offer even better terms to our prospective partners, host job fairs, and so on. If you'd like to chat about that, please email us at email@example.com.
Q: I’m not interested in having a physical presence, but would like to sell online with you. Is that possible?
A: Absolutely. You can select this option within the application. We may end up launching The Commons sooner rather than later online, but we'll see.
Q: Do I have to staff the space in store?
A: No. Our team provides the staff, the point of sale, the space, and so on.
Q: How much product do I need to have on hand to sell?
A: This will vary. We will endeavor to provide you a better sense once we know more about your products. We operate on a consignment basis, so can evaluate inventory levels throughout the partnership.
Q: Can I sell in just one store or do I have to be in all three?
A: In the application you can select which locations make sense for you. We would like to make room for as many partners as possible, so please let us know your top choice and if you’re interested in other spaces we can discuss further once we get a sense of numbers.
Q: What kind of brands are you interested in?
A: Our usual answer is brands that are willing to do creative and interesting things with us. That’s still the case, but right now we want to find a way to help those impacted most due to COVID-19. If you're well-equipped and able to weather the COVID-19 storm, please apply through our typical application for consideration. We're always keen to chat.
Q: How would I work with you as a restaurant or a chef?
A: We want to get creative here. We have kitchens and bars in all of our restaurants and would love to find a way to work with you on an event basis or even to host a pop-up restaurant in our space.
Q: How are you going to choose brands?
A: A lot of different factors come into play on this front. Generally, we select brands on the basis of whether we think will be successful in our stores and with our loyal customers. It's not predicated on the amount of money you've raised or otherwise. Just the quality and integrity of your products. Of course, for this initiative, we'll be particularly inclined to support brands who've been hard hit during the COVID-19 crisis.
Q: What does affordable space in store mean?
A: We will waive monthly fees and simply take a small percentage of sales.
Q: How are you going to keep customers and brands safe in store?
A: We've developed a robust Health & Safety plan. You can read more about it here.
Q: When is all of this going to launch start? When are you reopening your doors?
A: We'll be launching The Commons at Legacy West and South Congress in June 2020. We'll launch at our Chelsea Market location as soon as we're able, as well.
Q: Have a question we didn’t cover here?
A: Reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.