Times are tough. Most of us have faced some sort of adversity over the past months. Small businesses all across Indiana have been temporarily, or indefinitely, closed. We understand the uncertainty these times create and want to offer nine suggestions on how to strengthen your small businesses even during times of pandemic.
- Listen to your clients. They will tell you what they want and need by the questions they ask you. Your business may have to pivot to something different to stay operational. Try sharing your recipes digitally, or maybe take this as a chance to move your business online. This is a good time to ask your clients what they want or need from you.
- Do not stop advertising. Sometimes when looking at numbers this is the first thing you want to cut, but it shouldn’t be. How are people supposed to find out about your business if you aren’t advertising? Word of mouth only gets you so far. I would dare say that you should think about putting more money into your advertising bucket at this time.
- Organize your space, office, store, etc. You know the stack of papers that you’ve been dreading to go through on your desk, now is the time to stop procrastinating and do it. Throw away material that you’ve been keeping for years that is no longer useful and is outdated. If you work in an office with several people using an office refrigerator, now is the time to clean that out.
- Learn something new. Take that mastermind course that’s been on your bucket list. Learn another language. Read a book.
- Spend time on your current customers. Tell them how much you appreciate their support and business over the years. You can do this with handwritten letters, text messages, emails or phone calls. One thank you goes a long way.
- Do promotions. Say you own a t-shirt store; you could pull up all of the people that bought Christmas presents from you or winter apparel. Send them a card and offer a buy one, get a free t-shirt.
- It may be hard to get new clients right now. So, find ways to sell to your current customer base. You own a computer store. Pull up all of the people that purchased computers from you last year, but didn’t buy printers. Find a way to sell them printers.
- Support other local businesses. I’ve found the more you support local businesses, the more they will support you back. Share and comment on each other’s social media pages. Root on other small businesses. It will speak to your awesome character.
- Make sure you wake up with a plan. If you are working from home, it is easy to get distracted. I make a list of things that need to be accomplished the night before. When I sit down at my desk the next day, I hit the ground running. I don’t have to gather my thoughts or try to figure out what to do for the day.
I refuse to come out of this pandemic and work the same way that I have in the past. I expect to be better and stronger. I expect to be more creative. I expect to think more outside the box.