The Coronavirus has devastated countless businesses and entire industries in recent weeks.
Business owners nationwide are scrambling to adapt and survive. They are searching for new ways to stay in business and continue to serve clients, customers and patients during an unprecedented time in history.
They need ideas for new products, new services, new marketing approaches, and new sources of revenue.
But there’s one huge problem: When you’re worried about how you’re going to pay your employees and keep the lights on… When customers aren’t walking through the door… When you’re in fight or flight mode and you’re just trying to survive one more day… It’s hard to be creative and come up with new ideas.
That’s why we’ve compiled this resource guide to help business owners see what other business owners are doing to rise to the challenge.
Facebook Live Q&A Strategy
The beauty is that people can get answers to questions that other people are wondering about too.
“Do you have a mail order source for masks?” “What are the best nutritional supplements to help prevent succumbing to the more serious late effects of the infection?” “When do you think COVID-19 will peak in the DC area?” “Is it safe to travel to Florida with young children in a rental car if she disinfects the car?
By taking time to hear and answer the questions that are on people’s minds, the doctor is providing much-needed information while also calming anxieties of people at home.
The Facebook Live Q&A sessions help the medical clinic maintain consistent communication with current patients, create digital content that helps people seeking answers discover their clinic, and generate goodwill for once things get back to normal.
How you can use this in your business
Your clients / customers / patients probably have plenty of questions right now that you can answer. You can start by announcing the date and time of your Facebook Live Q&A session and inviting your clients / patients to attend to ask you their top questions during the Facebook Live Q&A.
Rather than just filming yourself answering frequently asked questions, doing it in the form of a live Q&A will engage your audience. They will appreciate the opportunity to speak with you in real time and realize that other people have similar questions and concerns.
The Business Spotlight Strategy
A local realtor is making Facebook posts every day highlighting businesses in her town that are still open. She’s helping promote curbside and takeout services, new services, or just raising awareness for great local businesses that are still serving their clientele.
What’s brilliant about this strategy is that the realtor is keeping her name and her own business top of mind without coming across as “salesy” or trying to pitch her own real estate services. By focusing her social media posts on other businesses in his local area, she is generating greater awareness and visibility for the featured business and her own realty business at the same time. Featured businesses are highly likely to share her Facebook posts with their social media audience as well — making it a win-win all around.
In uncertain times like these, people are hungry for positive news and messages. They enjoy hearing about local businesses that are doing cool things. As these posts get seen and shared by more people, guess what happens … They create a web, and all of the strands lead back to the business that has been spreading the goodwill.
How you can use this for your business
Take a few minutes each morning to research businesses in your town. Read your local newspaper. Search local hashtags on social media. Call local businesses and ask if they have any news you can share. Start compiling stories, and make a daily post that shines your “spotlight” on someone that could use a boost. And remember: don’t be self promotional at all. The goal is to lift up other people, and in the end the rising tide will lift all ships.
The “Donating to a Cause” Strategy
Every day we are hearing stories of shortages caused by Coronavirus shutdowns. Hospitals are running out of masks. Medical professionals are running out of gloves. Grocery stores are out of toilet paper.
Here’s a way you can help solve the problem and build goodwill at the same time.
A local resident is donating safe masks to a local gift shop. The gift shop is using proceeds from the sales of the safe masks to purchase bread from a local bakery to donate to local food banks. It’s a great way to create a circle of giving in your local community that generates goodwill and positive publicity for participating businesses.
The “Communicate Changes” Strategy
In the midst of uncertainty, you can stay top of mind and build goodwill and rapport with clients and the general public by sharing what you are doing to respond to current health concerns and anxieties and providing clarity and guidance.
GoWell Urgent Care, Warrenton VA
The GoWell Urgent Care clinic in Warrenton is sharing video announcements on Facebook to let patients and potential patients know that they can schedule a telemedicine visit and speak with a doctor or nurse practitioner from the comfort of their home while they are being encouraged to “shelter in place” to protect their health.
Blaser Physical Therapy
Blaser Physical Therapy is offering free 20-minute telephone consultations with a licensed physical therapist to give people experiencing chronic pain, discomfort or injury an opportunity to discuss their specific concerns and find out if physical therapy can help alleviate their pain and discomfort. They are also getting the word out to patients and the public that they are offering telemedicine visits as well.
These communication strategies accomplish several things:
1. They keep these medical practices top of mind through frequent updates via social media, email and their website.
2. They help put people’s fears to rest by letting them know that these clinics are being proactive about protecting patient health and ensuring patient safety.
3. They are reassuring people that they can get the health care they need without exposing themselves to the Coronavirus.
At a time when people are feeling bombarded with messages of uncertainty, these communication strategies are letting people know that “We have things under control. We are taking precautions, and we have your back.”
How You Can Use This In Your Business
Whatever your business is, you’ve probably made some changes recently to adapt to the “new normal”.
If the changes you’ve made are for the benefit of your clients, make sure you are getting the word out.
Calm fears and anxieties by explaining how you’re being proactive to protect your clients.
Even if your changes don’t directly impact clients, pull back the curtain and share all the ways you’re adapting. People will appreciate seeing someone who is calm and collected in these crazy times.
The “Viral Giveaway” Strategy
In honor of Mother’s Day, Timeless Moments Photography is giving away photo sessions plus two fully edited 8” x 10” photographs to five local mothers. Everyone who enters their giveaway campaign is encouraged to share it with their friends and mention who else they would like to include in their photo session.
In addition to increasing this photographer’s online visibility and goodwill within his local community, this giveaway campaign is also helping him build a list of potential photography clients who he can stay in touch with after the winners are announced.
He can reach out to those moms who did not win and offer them special pricing on a future photo session.
How you can use this for your business
Think of a service or product you offer that people would love and that you would be willing to give away to help you build your list of potential clients and customers.
Then spend a little money to advertise your giveaway to your target clientele on Facebook.
Paid Facebook ad campaigns are a great way to reach a wider audience for as little as $5.00 a day.
I hope this article has given you some new ideas that you can use in your business to survive and thrive in this time of upheaval and uncertainty.
At the end of the day, entrepreneurship isn’t just about making money. Entrepreneurship is about solving real problems for real people. It’s about seeing solutions where other people see only problems. It’s about creating a brighter future when everyone else sees only a gloomy present.
And it’s about creating services, products and organizations that make the world a better place.
Entrepreneurs are superheroes. And right now the world needs heroes more than ever.
People still need your services and products. Now is the time to lead and to let your light shine to your clients and your community. You can do it and we’re here to help.
If we can support you we’re here to help. Just reach out.