Managing a business is stressful, but managing a business during slow times can be unbearable, especially when there isn’t much you can do to help the situation. Sometimes owning the situation is the best kind of marketing tool – figuring out how to spin something bad into a web of good.
It is highly likely that all businesses will be affected by the past few weeks and upcoming weeks due to COVID-19, but it doesn’t have to be career-ending. Here we will cover a few things that your business can do during downtimes.
- Check-in with clients and employees
- Stay active on social media
- Organize and review finances
- Revise marketing strategies
- Get ahead of schedule
Check-In With Clients
During business downtimes, it’s especially important to make sure you and your business remain at the forefront. You can do this by checking in with clients, customers, and especially your employees.
Send E-Mails To Clients & Customers
Consider sending personalized emails asking how they are doing during the Covid crisis and offering any assistance that your business may provide. Just remember – the goal is not to sell but to engage. The last thing anyone wants to see is an opportunistic business.
Find ways your business can be of assistance. Do you offer drop-shipping services of must-have products during a crisis? Perhaps you can send informational articles or humorous articles to keep spirits up.
Stay Active On Social Media
Join niche communities that are related to your business. Engaging online is a great way to keep in touch and ensure the saying of “out of sight, out of mind” does not apply to your brand.
Share articles on LinkedIn, tweet and retweet news on Twitter, hold conversations on Facebook, post photos and memories to Instagram. The more active you are the more others will see you.
Don’t Forget Your Employees
Checking in with your employees is a top priority during downtimes. With many working remotely from home, it is good to check-in with them to see how they are doing and ensure they are staying on schedule if there is work that needs to be done.
Keep working to motivate the colleagues you are responsible for. Working from home can be difficult. It is isolating, distracting and can lead to people suffering both mentally and physically.
Organize And Review Your Finances
One of the biggest things you can do during downtime is to grab your team together and review all the funds coming in and going out. This is the perfect time to slow down and take a good look at the books and determine what is necessary for the business to run, and what could be cut.
You’d be surprised by how many businesses are being double-charged for services or have an unnecessary subscription that has since been left behind for an alternative. Now is a great time to check everything, including:
- Advertising costs
- Unnecessary subscriptions
- Supply costs – Switch to wholesale and find the best vendors
- Reduce Vehicle expenses – Necessary travel only, purchase used vehicles, focus diesel and hybrid vehicles
- Cut Insurance Costs – Review your policies and discuss options with your insurance broker
- Switch to cloud-based services rather than keeping expensive servers on hand
The bottom line, there is almost always something that can be cut to help preserve funds during downtimes.
Revise Marketing Strategies
Downtimes are perhaps the best possible way to review and revise marketing strategies. Have a remote meeting with your team to discuss what you’re currently – and have been – doing and brainstorm what can be done differently or improved upon.
- Review website analytics
- Review social media strategy
- Review email templates and update them
- Document testimonials
- Grab client feedback
- Update your website
- Review all marketing subscriptions
There is no better time than now to do some research on different marketing strategies and figure out which one may work best for your business. This is a great opportunity to additionally review the different ad options available online and find the most cost-effective options that won’t break the bank.
Get Ahead Of Schedule
Do you have projects in various stages of completion? Now is the time to get ahead by finishing up past-due and in-process projects. Take advantage of these slow times and ensure you’re all caught up for when the downtime ends and things pick back up again.
Downtime doesn’t mean your business should come to a grinding halt, just the opposite actually, take advantage of the downtime to get organized and get things done ahead of time.
- Fill out your content calendar
- Review deliverables that are sure to come your way and get them done
- Catch up on paperwork
- Write your standard operating procedures (SOPs)
- Update headshots
- Work on a style guide for your company brand and logo
Downtimes are rough for any business. The end goal is to preserve all you can and find ways to continue to bring in small amounts of revenue for the time being. Whether it directly relates to your business or not, if you have a way to still contribute toward your bills at the end of the month, you will be in better shape.
Stay positive and focused on yearly goals to keep you and your entire staff engaged and ready to come back to work. Who knows, maybe this is just the kind of downtime your business needed. Maybe it’ll give you the grand reopening you wished you could have, but never thought you’d get.
Check out our other articles in relation to the Covid19 crisis. Stay safe and good health.
- Small Business Covid19 Crisis Response Resources
- Stay In Touch With Clients & Survive Working From Home