Keep Calm and Business On
It has been a hell-of-a-year already. And we all know that the coming months could be tough on business, health, mindset and other areas of life.
It is times like these when fight-or-flight reactions kick in. It can be easy to retreat, to scale down, and let famine mentality kick in. That is exactly what you SHOULD NOT be doing.
Our business needs us to be a leader. Our clients need us to be a leader. Our community needs us to be a leader.
So here is what you are going to do instead. Turn this challenge into an opportunity.
Do you know the expression “buy low and sell high”? It applies to more than stocks and bonds. It applies to your business as well.
When business is at a low is when you want to double-down and focus on short-term and long-term growth. Focus on those things that will get you some quick wins and those that are an investment in the future – there will be a future for your business if you keep working it.
Leads are the lifeblood of your business. Follow-up with your list and if you don’t have a list, now is a great time to start.
Reach out to people on the phone. Check-in with them. Ask them how they are doing. How you can help.
LOOK FOR SPEAKING & SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES
There are going to be things that are going to be put on hold. The in-person group program, that trade-show booth, that speaking engagement. We have had several ourselves.
Don’t lose focus on these things and when all returns to normal (and it will), be prepared to pick right up where you left off.
Research speaking and sponsorship opportunities. Even with all the cancellations, there are new events for the fall being announced every day.
LOOK FOR JOINT VENTURE OPPORTUNITIES
Look for opportunities to partner with someone to add even more value and reach a larger audience. Who in your industry offers a complimentary service that you can bundle together?
Know someone who is planning on running an online event or challenge – ask to be a part of it. Or, better yet, start your own.
Check-in with your local Chamber of Commerce, Downtown BIA, industry association etc. What are they doing to support their members?
WORK ON THAT COURSE OR BOOK
Have you been sitting on a product or service idea for a while? Pull it out, dust it off, and use this time to get it done.
UPDATE YOUR WEBSITE
When was the last time your website was updated? We are not talking an overhaul (although you may be due for that) but updated to reflect your current photo and bio, your current offerings etc.
If the operation of your business has changed during this challenging time, update your website to reflect this. Operating hours, location, protocols for coming to your physical location, anything that your customers need to know to continue working with you.
CONTENT IS STILL KING – OR QUEEN
Get your content out there. Blog, engage on social media. Start doing short videos (if you are not already).
Look for podcast opportunities. Now could even be the time to get your own podcast going.
Find out what your ideal clients are looking for right now and give it to them.
DOCUMENT YOUR STUFF
Put pen to paper and document some of those business processes that exist only in your head. Now is a good time to have a look at them – can they be streamlined and more efficient? Can they provide a better user experience for your customers?
ADAPT YOUR MESSAGING
Different times call for different messaging. Please check any pre-scheduled content for its appropriateness at this time. When anxiety, stress, hopelessness, and chaos are the regular state of mind these days, people perceive messages in a different way than before. Adapt your voice and tone according to the situation people are facing.
Post content that adds value to the conversation. Be encouraging and motivational. Be generous. We are not suggesting that you white-wash the situation out there – but all need to move our world forward in a positive direction.
People are hanging out online, even more than before. That means you have an audience, you just need to understand the best ways to communicate with them.
Every business challenge can be turned into an opportunity. Continue to focus on adding value, be generous with your expertise and focus on solving problems.
What does the events of 2019-2020 mean for the future of business? Digital communication will just increase from here on. Businesses will incorporate digital more and more into their operations, service delivery and marketing strategies.
Social media, websites, online courses, digital delivery of programs and services… these things will all become more important in the future to ensure that businesses are agile, adaptable, and shit-happens-proof (to coin a phrase).
Let’s start thinking now how we can future-proof your business!