Hi, it’s Heather from Skate Helper. Like most small businesses, mine too has slowed considerably. Normally, during this time of year things are slow but never this slow. Governments have offered funding and that will help but there are other things small businesses can do during this time.
What can you do?
One thing I’ve done is contact my accountant to review taxes and cash flow. I also contacted my insurance provider to see if my policy includes anything in terms of lost income or business interruption insurance.
Communicate with your Customers
I’ve reached out to all my customers to check in and see how they are doing. I gave them an update of where I’m at with my business and when I’m hoping to resume at a normal pace. I think now more than ever you need to be transparent with your customers and your employees.
Marketing and Social Media
I’m looking at my marketing and social media strategies. Now is great time to hire a freelance social media person or website consultant. I believe you need to continue to put your brand and message out there and align your company with your values and beliefs.
This is a perfect time to look at revising your website, start a blog, add new pictures to your photo gallery or Instagram. Refresh and update anything older than a couple of years. When are you ever going to have this much time to really think hard about your business and what changes you may need to make?
Prepare an online marketing strategy so you stay connected with your customers throughout this time. In my industry, direct mail still works really well. I plan to mail brochures to every ice arena in North America.
Explore Options for Government Funding
Be sure to talk to your suppliers and lenders and look into applying for any government funding that may be available to you.
Research your Industry
Now is a great time to do any research or reading on your industry. Find out what your customers are doing. Connect with them through Facebook and Instagram. Find out how they are coping during this unusual time. Be proactive not reactive. Is there another area where you can expand? Is there another service you can offer your customers?
We are at a time where innovation and creativity will guide society to change the way we do business. I’m sure the government leaders will be looking at innovative ways on how government services are structured and delivered. So many areas need to be reviewed. The old “normal” way of doing things may not work anymore.
Our New “Normal”
Once we get through this, I hope businesses keep the plexi-glass shields up, keep educating people to wash hands and sanitize regularly. Keep up social distancing until a vaccine is available. Keep working together, caring about one another and helping one another get through this.
Stay safe and be kind.
Heather at Skate Helper.