If you are anything like me, you will know that this too shall pass.
The current situation has changed business as we know it. You can’t even stick your tongue out at service people that you don’t like.
Ok, we are different.
We realise that as the scope and uncertainty around coronavirus grows, small businesses are being forced to adapt to an increasingly challenging environment.
Here in Melbourne we had up to 8 months of lockdown. That’s enough to change habits of customers as they now can only be reached through digital means, mainly their mobile phones.
Despite all of this, one thing we can control is our efforts to stay top of mind with customers while attention shifts to digital and habits are changing.
A little strategy and relationship building right now, can go a long way in helping small businesses build the momentum they will need to be successful in the post-COVID market.
This is why each morning, I endeavour to write a little about how you too can have a business that’s profitable and enjoyable.
The time to start being proactive is now.
Many businesses are adapting and while in the short term they need to survive, they also can thrive on the other side of this.
To all the business owners out there who are forced to shift your strategy and make difficult decisions during this time, here’s some food for thought:
1.Digitise your business and update your current information
If you don’t already have a website or a robust social presence now is the time to work on that.
Update your website, social media pages, local listing sites, blog, etc.
Transparency and follow through are key – have your hours changed?
Have you temporarily closed but can arrange delivery?
How can customers contact you to set up an appointment for next year when things settle?
2. Create Social Content
If you haven’t had the time to evolve your social content to where you want it now is the time.
Tell your story, engage with your local community and customers. Even if you are a business that has had to shut down temporarily, you can stay top of mind with your customers during this phase by creating helpful content. E.g if you own a hair salon start creating content to help your customers care for their hair on their own – when everyone starts back to work they will need your help.
Ask your customers what kind of content they would like to see from you, this can help guide both your short term content and your longer term strategy.
3. Communicate with your customers
Regardless of how the current business climate has affected you its critical to communicate with your customers and let them know your current status – especially if you are still open for business or if your model has evolved (retail store evolving to delivery for example).
Talk with customers to understand their current needs and situation – this may lead you to create new ways of doing business for the short term that you hadn’t thought of.
4. Engage with your top fans in social channels
Advocates of your brand are important to your reputation and engagement.
Identify and engage with your top fans in social media to help you spread the word on changes, current offerings, listen to your community.
We do the same in our #livelongbusinesscommunity
Ask for their support with reviews, testimonials, their help in content creation.
5. Give back
Don’t forget to give back to your community, your industry and your customers/ employees.
This is a very difficult time for many and a lot of people need your help – your community and of course your customers and employees.
Plan to be in business for the long term and this is the perfect time to get more involved in showing leadership and helping others where you can.
Stand by your company’s purpose and values – walk your talk.
Want some feedback on whether or not your Digital Marketing is making an impact ? Take advantage of sending me direct message and get some honest thoughts on where you shine, and where you don’t.