Most of us have experienced some level of impact on our business from COVID19. While it did come upon us suddenly and without much warning, we can use it as an opportunity to grow. It’s a wakeup call that it’s time to reinvent ourselves and how we do business in the new economy.
Business results don’t seem very predictable right now, do they? But remember, we’ve gone through difficult times before, like the aftermath of 9/11 or the great recession of 2008/2009. Some companies came out of these difficult times by reinventing their businesses to thrive. While others found themselves closing their doors. What made for the different outcomes?
I’ve been through difficult times before and what helped me continue getting predictable results in unpredictable times, was letting go of the past and adjusting my focus to the future. The key is to spend your time being strategic – this is where I say stretch don’t splatter.
Below you will find three key areas that you should be focusing on right now. They are extremely important as you reposition your business so you can reap predictable business results in the not-so-distant future.
1) Reach Out and Talk to Both Prospects and Clients Personally
One of the business strategies I’m encouraging all my private clients to do is to ramp up keeping in touch with people. Every week strive to have 5-10 conversations, especially if you aren’t super busy right now.
Who should you call? Call your current clients, former clients, prospects who didn’t hire you, people on your newsletter list, and other business contacts. Ask them if you can set up a short conversation.
What should you ask? Just ask them how they are doing. This conversation is NOT to sell your services. It’s a touchpoint. Check-in with people and ask them what’s happening on their end. I’ve found that when I’m really in a collaborative conversation with a person, I start learning from them what is it that they really need and that gets my wheels turning on how I could help in the future.
What should you offer? During the call, I’m happy to provide advice, ideas, or strategies that will help them now. You won’t get paid for this, but you’ll reap results later. It helps you build up your “know, like, and trust factor” in their eyes and provides you with brand new business opportunities that you can use for reinventing yourself and your company. Now’s the time to build up your list of trusted relationships with those who may be ideal clients for one of your new service offerings.
2) Enhance the Quality of Your Marketing by Adding Value
Many consultants have become a bit lazy in marketing, assuming things would continue on after this pandemic as they did in the past, but that train has left the station. As you move forward in reinventing your business, you will have to ramp up your business marketing strategies in innovative ways.
What topics should your marketing focus on right now? The key is being of service versus the hard-core selling techniques you could use when business was booming six months ago. The kind of marketing you should be doing provides value for free right now that is in alignment with your new business future. This way you’re silently selling the value you bring to the table so that when someone is ready to pull the trigger, you are the one they magnetically feel attracted to.
Share what people need both now and after we start to see the light at the end of the pandemic tunnel. Go back and look at all of your marketing materials, do they need to be updated to address the new needs and wants of your ideal market? Address what people need to do today, not just the same old, same old stuff. Ask yourself, what’s keeping them up a night right now? It is most likely not what it was six months ago.
What kind of marketing strategies should you be using now? Unfortunately, with all the current noise online, you can’t rely on social media posts if you are selling higher-end services. I’m finding that more people are buying today from people who refer them or know them, which is why it’s so important to make those phone calls!
A particularly valuable marketing strategy is to write brief special reports (one to four pages). I’ve been providing these for my corporate audience and then following up with a phone call to my former and current clients to review it with them. The feedback has been wonderful! Many wanted to share the document with their team or recommend me for an upcoming training.
How frequently should you be marketing? More than ever before! For example, increase how often you send out your newsletter. You may want to go from once a month to weekly.
3) Begin Researching New Products and Services to Meet the Future Needs of Clients
By following the last two suggestions, you’re placing yourself in the perfect position to pivot to new service offerings. By speaking regularly with prospects, clients, and colleagues, you’re learning from them what is it that they really need now. It’s like doing R&D research for your new business reinvention. By shifting your marketing material to share value, you’re seeing what’s working and what isn’t. You should be able to discern which topics are generating interest and which ones seem irrelevant now that things have changed.
You may want to step up your research by setting up a survey using Survey Monkey. Send it to those on your email marketing list, and both former and current clients, asking questions to discover what they see themselves needing as they come out of this pandemic.
In my next article, I’ll dive deeper into how you can determine the kinds of new products and services that will be most effective in the upcoming months. The most important thing is not to give up and to continue to focus on service. I’m a futurist and a visionary so I have been able to reinvent my business over and over again due to the changing business tides and so can you!
Sarah’s Predictable Results Insights
- List five people you can call this week and focus on how you can be of service.
- What new marketing content can you create that will address the current needs of your target market?
- What feedback are you getting to help you identify valuable new products and services in the months to come?
If you need support, now’s the best time to get it. Don’t want until it’s too late, when implementing the right strategy now could save your business in the future. Reach out to me at 1-800-267-3245 for a complimentary strategy session. No pressure tactics, together we’ll brainstorm how to position your business for predictable results.