The world is in lockdown. Businesses will be hit hard. How long will this COVID-19 crisis last? No one is sure, but we have to do our best as the world will keep on turning. Here are 4 tips which will help your business to weather the storm.
Pivot Your Marketing Message
The current situation has changed the problem that led your customer to your service in the first place, so it’s crucial that you change how you look at solving this problem. Everyone’s lives have been impacted so it’s important to analyse how that is reflected back on to your industry.
Donald Miller from StoryBrand gave a great example about the Flower Business…who would buy flowers at this time? Potentially many with the right pivot in your marketing message. Florists aren’t just selling flowers anymore. In a time where families can’t be together, they are now selling that missing ‘touch’. ‘Touch someone with this gift”.
Your marketing message cannot stay the same.
Don’t make it about yourself. Look at the recent marketing by Coke and McDonald’s, it gained huge negative backlash. It shows that brands need to be careful. However well-intentioned, your message risks being viewed as exploitive.
“Don’t go silent, be helpful!”
In these uncertain times, empathy is the sharpest tool in your toolbox.
Stay connected to your customers and maintain those relationships, even if they aren’t able to commit to buying right now. It’s important to stay calm and give helpful information so you’ll be remembered in the long run.
People are just as stressed and worried as you are, connect to them at that level. Everyone is searching for answers so offer an answer!
Be Honest With Your Team
There isn’t a better time for everyone in small businesses to come together to work through this.
Get everyone together and brainstorm ideas. Maybe someone from accounting will come up with a marketing idea that allows you to change the game. You could even go a step further and be transparent about your business, putting everything on the table – the monthly sales target, the month-to-date sales performance, the month-to-date expenses, the year-to-date profit.
Jim Antonopoulos of Tank has been a great advocator of this with proven results. Even before the crisis when I read his journal concerning this topic ‘Can you handle transparency?’, I found it very interesting and enlightening.
“Everything was on the table in a display of ultimate and extreme transparency. But also a lesson in humility.
His company would succeed or fail in full display of all of his staff and he was using the power of the collective to find the weak points in his business model in a weekly rhythm.
If anything was to go wrong in the business everyone, not just Michael and his Exec team, would know it was coming. No surprises and ample opportunity to correct course if needed.
A full, clear view of the horizon we were all sailing towards”
Check out his weekly journal here http://www.jimantonopoulos.com/
The most important tip is don’t give up and stay positive. Focus on helping others through your business and goodwill come. It has to.