As we wrote that headline, we rolled our eyes, not for the context of it, but the sheer fact we just added to the oversaturation of the word Covid-19. The thing is yes, it’s a deeply concerning issue, but so too is the way we approach this as brands.
The harsh reality is that a lot of us will have a hard time, though for the others there are 2 ways to approach it:
- It gives us reason to see where the cracks are in our businesses and how to fix them.
- To find the benefits and use them to our advantage.
And, while we can’t control what is happening, we can look at the way we currently do things that can prepare us better, should something like this happen again.
Keeping up to date can be the game changer.
We’re now at a stage where huge events are being cancelled, people are being quarantined and remote working is a necessity. Staying up to date with technology that can keep your business running, regardless of the scenario, is hugely important. This is where a lot of old school businesses that haven’t (or wouldn’t) update may feel the crunch. And now, while they may be frantically trying to get new systems in place, a lot of the newer businesses who have adapted will reap the reward.
Remote working is not a thing of the future anymore, it is the present. Allowing workers more flexible environments give businesses an upper hand when managing situations like this. Having cloud-based systems and remote working access allow the business to continue as usual in most (not all) circumstances.
How can brand’s move forward in this situation?
Think quick. The benefit of being a small to medium business is the ability be nimble and shift. It’s usually during times like this that big ideas, creations and inventions come to light. Quick thinking strategies and implementation can mean that brands can find new directions or revenue streams should they provide a solution, or a want to something that directly relates to the current situation.
What do we mean? Well, as we’ve seen splashed all over the news, people are stock piling on products, stripping our shelves bare and necessity items in demand. If you’re in an industry that can provide a product or an alternative product, this can be a great way to keep bringing in revenue.
A few examples:
- Modi body period underwear – instead of women sanitary items.
- Hippybottomus cloth nappies – instead of disposable nappies.
- Handmade soaps from your local soap maker – there’s plenty out there, have a look.
They’re just a few options which also have the added benefit of being environmentally friendly or supporting a small business in a time when they need you most – win win.
Now what about services? Can you provide something that people want in a different way?
A few examples:
- Cleaning services would be in high demand now, more so than ever.
- A restaurant? It might be a time to get on Uber Eats or Menu Log. Never mind the mark up, people will pay the convenience fee of the delivery to avoid public places.
- Health and Wellness businesses – EDUCATE. Now is a great time to be providing information on the topic. Move the goalposts from trying to turn the audience into ‘now’ customers and into ‘future’ customers.
A big brand making moves, Disney. They’re releasing Frozen 2, on Disney + 3 months early for families that will be stuck at home due to the virus – read more here.
Don’t stop marketing
The last thing you want is to be forgotten during a time where you need to be seen. While it’s a sensitive time, it’s important to tread carefully on what you’re saying (see our previous post ‘Be aware of what you’re saying during specific events), eventually these things end. Just like the GFC (global financial crisis), businesses will come back with a vengeance and it’s important that you do what is necessary during the lull period to boost presence, build the conversation and stay relevant.
As brands we need to stay proactive not reactive. Follow how people are responding to the crisis, stay vigilant, watch what they’re doing and how they’re consuming. These things can provide little gems of information that you can use to help you think or plan differently, whether that’s instant or long term.
In the lull period (if you have one), work on your processes and overall brand presence.
- Find and implement new programs and systems that will set the business up for the future.
- Focus on your plan of attack and the rebuilding phase. What do you need and how are you going to do it?
- Upskill and educate yourself in new areas for growth.
- Eliminate unwanted costs and streamline financial outgoings to prepare for the slower period.
- Think of ways you can provide an online alternative to something you provide for example – online workshops vs inhouse.
- Use this time to brainstorm ideas that can set you apart from your competitors and provide you a stronger point of difference.
Unfortunately, we will see a lot of sad news come out of this pandemic. Adding to the catastrophic loss our country alone has had recently, we will see the loss of jobs and businesses. Though if we try to find a positive out of all of this, it’s that it will force everyone to think differently about how we do things in the future. It will change the way we think and move forward not only from a business point of view, but as a society.
If you have any questions or want to know more, click here and get in touch. Or check out the services page to see what’s on offer. Alternatively, head over and follow us on Instagram and see what’s happening with us daily!