If COVID-19 has impacted business for you like it has for many others, you may have had to temporarily close your doors. Or maybe you’re a business in planning whose opening date has now been delayed indefinitely. While certain sectors (at least in California) are starting to slowly open back up in a limited capacity, the restrictions may still be impacting your business operations and your bottom line.
If you’ve read my previous blog posts, you know I stress that now is not the time to lose momentum. And if you know me, you know I love a good checklist. So here are some things you can do *right now* in this season of waiting that will benefit your business in the future.
- Update your website. Take this time to ensure your business information is up to date (including new hours of operation, if they’ve changed!). Refresh your photos, add new customer testimonials, and make sure your website copy reflects your company’s services and values. While you’re at it, make sure that your Google Business Page and any other platforms you’re on are current, too.
- Create content. Even if your doors aren’t open right now, you can still create content that engages your customers and keeps you top of mind. Allow your employees to do an Instagram takeover to introduce themselves and show off their #WorkFromHome set-ups. Create simple videos with favorite recipes or other DIY creations your customers can try at home. Offer free workout classes online or do a free guided wine or beer tasting event. Business that offer free value now will see a great return when they reopen.
- Connect with customers. Whether your business is on pause or if you haven’t opened yet, encourage people to sign-up for your email list. At a pace that makes sense for your business, you can send updates, connect more personally with your customers and create excitement for when you reopen. I typically use Mailchimp for my clients but there are so many great platforms out there to try.
- Network, network, network. Chambers of Commerce and other local business groups are a great way to stay connected to the business community right now. So many of the Sacramento Region’s Chambers of Commerce are going above and beyond to offer value to their members, from virtual seminars to resource portals. Connect with fellow members for virtual coffee. And see if the organization has any opportunities for you to promote your business, like Member-To-Member discounts.
- Plan ahead. Your marketing budget and timeline may look a lot different now, so take advantage of this slower time to reevaluate your strategy and priorities. You may want to develop a plan around your reopening and devote more resources to it. If you’re able, you may want to consider taking your brick and mortar business online. Whatever this looks like for you, use this time to plan ahead and develop a sound strategy that will benefit you now and in the long run.
I’m working right along side you during this uncertain time! If you need help with any of the above checklist items or want to brainstorm over a virtual coffee, let’s get in touch.