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Traders who have signed up received their own plastic cards and promotional material like window posters and branded card holders.
At a special preview launch last Thursday, they were also shown how the website will look and how the scheme is being marketed on social media like Facebook and Twitter.
James Tillitt, the Astor’s artistic director, was involved in the planning. He said: “I’m so thrilled and delighted by this launch and the response we’re getting from businesses.”
The card entitles customers to discounts from retailers, service providers and tradesmen, and aims to entice them to spend their money locally, choosing Deal over out-of-town developments like Westwood Cross and Whitefriars in Canterbury.
“It’s the type of thing that would stimulate the town more," Cllr Mike Eddy, KCC
A website, www.dealcard.co, will list special offers that are open to card holders only.
Registration is free for customers and businesses, but organisations can take out a premium membership for £60.
Each premium business member will have their own page on the website which can be updated as frequently as they like with a url that can be used in promotional material.
The scheme began thanks to hours of voluntary expertise and cash donations.
A cash grant of £2,000 has helped from Labour county councillors Mike Eddy and Eileen Rowbotham.
Cllr Eddy said: “It’s the type of thing that would stimulate the town more.
“Deal has High Street of the Year, let’s encourage people to use this High Street of the Year.
“The organisers of the Deal Card needed money to kick start it, so this will be of benefit, not just to residents, but to anyone that comes into the town.”
The Deal Card is available in town now, or ask in shops that are displaying posters.
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