The relentless spread of the coronavirus is hitting businesses hard, and many will have had to cut back on their normal operations or stop trading completely as the government and health service try desperately to get the virus under control.
Small business owners have had a very rough couple of weeks, to put it mildly. Some have pleaded for clearer guidance from the government on whether they need to close (which is now in place) and some have stayed open because they simply couldn’t afford to close.
Even if you have had to scale your business right back in the face of the coronavirus crisis, there are some things you can do to keep your business running.
One day, hopefully in the not too distant future, it will be business as usual, and you need to be prepared for that. Before you think about throwing in the towel, here are some creative ways to keep your business afloat during the coronavirus outbreak.
Market your business like there’s no tomorrow
Now is not the time to disappear from view. You need to stay visible and front of mind, so that when the world finally returns to normal, customers and clients will think of you. Here are some things to try:
- Focus on building a community. If you have a Facebook group, keep active and use this time to offer help to people or to provide a forum where you can network, share ideas, and discuss concerns (though keep it productive and positive if you can).
- Keep on sending out newsletters and communications to clients and customers, and even better, contact them directly. Call your clients for a chat and stay in touch with customers via Facebook live or similar, for a more personal way of staying connected.
- Keep one eye on the future. One day, this is all going to be over, so don’t let the current paralysis stop you from trying to forge connections with potential new clients, suppliers, or customers.
- Keep putting valuable content out there. What do your ideal customers want to know at the moment? What do they need help with? Take this opportunity to update your website, and keep the content like blogs, podcasts, social media posts, and videos coming. Customers and clients are still going to search for you on Google when things go back to normal too, and putting content out there regularly will help you get found online.
Think about what you can take online
We are lucky to live in an age where we can stay connected at the touch of a button, and technology has helped many businesses carry on offering at least some kinds of services. Can you do virtual consultations, workshops, or training via Zoom or similar platforms? Now is the time to think creatively, and if you’ve been meaning to take some of your services online for a while, this is your chance!
Do you need to go back to the drawing board completely?
Businesses that survive the toughest times are those that are agile and able to adapt to even the most challenging of circumstances. In the light of the coronavirus outbreak, do you need to change your business model altogether to survive? We’ve seen restaurants become takeaways, businesses offering gift cards and other deals that can be used at a later date, gyms and personal trainers streaming live fitness classes; there’s always a way if you are willing to get creative.
It might not seem like it now, but the current situation is actually an opportunity for business owners to discover how to become more flexible, adaptable, and to possibly even change the way they do business for the better.
Do you need help to carry on with business as usual when we’re in a situation which is definitely unusual?
I can help.
Just because we can’t physically travel or meet at the moment, it doesn’t mean that your pressing team and business issues should be left unresolved.
I can do virtual 1-2-1s with you or your managers to help resolve team issues and keep things moving forward so that you have a more supportive, resilient, and productive workplace when this is all over.
Get in touch today to find out how I can help your business navigate these very choppy waters.