THEY call it a cash mob.
It’s like a flash mob but they don’t dance, they flash cash.
And yesterday, they flashed cash in a Rutherglen shop to help small business and the campaign of Indi independent candidate Cathy McGowan
Confused? That’s OK, the shop owner was somewhat befuddled, too.
Rutherglen Florist owner Carla Walsh got a call from Cam Klose on Wednesday night.
Mr Klose is one of Ms McGowan’s young and trendy campaigners. His parents run Wodonga’s Jappo Donks, he lived near Ms McGowan’s nephew and he left his web designing job to help Ms McGowan’s campaign.
Mr Klose told Ms Walsh the campaigners wanted to spend cash at her High Street store after a Weekly Times article on unrest in Indi that quoted Ms Walsh on consumer confidence.
“I was really surprised, with the call,” Ms Walsh said as she arranged flowers before the mob descended.
Cash mob members spend money at small businesses to support the local economy and then talk about it on social media. It was founded by an American Mr Klose met in the US last year.
Mr Klose told the founder about Ms McGowan’s campaign and he thought their methods aligned.
It highlights community and social media and how they mix.
“The idea is to help local business and build a sense of community,” Mr Klose said.
“Cathy’s campaign is a lot on social media.”
Fifteen people wearing Ms McGowan’s orange campaign shirts spent up to $400 of their own — not campaign — cash buying flowers they then gave to Rutherglen’s Glenville aged care home.
The mob was accompanied by small dogs wearing jackets sporting McGowan badges.
Ms Walsh said she was “terribly non-political” but the welcome cash injection had swayed her.
“After today I probably will be voting for Ms McGowan,” she said.
You might expect disappointment from shops that missed out but, next door, Bella’s Ladies Fashion shop assistant Viann Doyle said they could benefit too by raising Rutherglen’s profile.
“It’s great they support the town,” she said.