In this unique time many businesses are facing concerns on the future of their business. With so many businesses relying on footfall and personal interaction as their main income, it’s not surprising.
With the inevitable “lockdown” on the horizon, and even the fear factor, footfall will (and already has started to) deplete to a level that for most businesses will render their income level as unsustainable.
Can you change how your business operates in order to survive this trying time? Can you think outside the box? We hope this article may help even one business out there survive where otherwise it might not.
While some people will be stuck at home, sadly too ill to work or play, others will be climbing the walls and turning to media for their news, entertainment, release and social interaction. This is the perfect time to grab the opportunity and turn it to your advantage. You essentially have a captive audience because, let’s face it, they can’t do a lot else.
What will people be doing during these trying times and what can we offer;
to help them;
to entertain them;
to make them feel part of a community;
to educate them;
to keep us in their minds?
What can the business do differently?
What can we offer?
Here are some of our thoughts to get your creative juices flowing:
Is there an element of your business you can offer online? Is your online presence up to scratch? Is your
website mobile friendly and fast? Do you even have a website?
Can you offer your services via an online platform such as Skype, WhatsApp, FaceTime etc. Can you offer one to one lessons, whether it’s music, cookery, art etc. With live streaming you can still interact with your customers, albeit in a slightly different way.
Can you put in force now, an action plan so your staff can work from home via the cloud?
Can you create a paid subscription services offering “inside knowledge” with an option to purchase for home delivery?
Can you alter your product so it is available for delivery?
Generate a buzz – offer competitions or entertaining or educational videos (perfect for food lovers “how to make the most of that dried pasta!”) to bring people into the business when the recovery starts. Put fuel on the fire to encourage people to want to visit you at their first opportunity.
Use video. With not a lot else going on, you can guarantee the YouTube views will rocket. Take advantage and get your business in front of them. Creating a simple 2 minute video is easier than you think and for only a couple of pounds a day you can target your video to show in front of your ideal target audience, right on your doorstep.
Added Value – particularly or the services industries such as insurance, consulting. People may be looking to cut expenses so now more than ever it is important to offer that something extra. Make it that much harder for people to say no to you. This could be by informational newsletters such as “how to….”, for example in insurance “how to insure your business against a potential loss of income”.
Build up your mailing lists – plan for the future.
Many people will be concerned about income and stop their marketing activities. This is effectively like cutting off your air supply. Your business will most definitely suffer if you simply “shut down” all marketing during this time. Staying in front of your audience will help build your future. You simply need to get creative. And this doesn’t necessarily mean paid marketing as there are so many channels out there that if you get creative, will work their own magic.
If cashflow is an issue, although not specifically said, this article does imply that if a company phones HMRC and says they can’t pay VAT or Tax, they will be given time to pay: