1. Digital Marketing
Now, with limited ability to interact in person, it’s important to meet customers where they are. Digital Marketing allows you to do so in a number of different ways:
With more people online now because of the stay at home order, people are spending more time online than ever before. Online is ultimately the safest way to interact with customers during the pandemic; the ability to video conference or perform online advertising has given us the ability to stay in contact without risking exposure to the virus. This also gives businesses the ability to reach customers all over the world simultaneously.
Facebook and Google algorithms provide lookalike audiences which mimics behavior and interests of your existing audience and customers, creating smarter targeting based on that data.
Email marketing allows you to stay in touch with your customers and control the customer journey with custom flows that increase conversion.
The best way to get started is to use your website host to run email marketing campaigns as well as Google & Facebook ads, providing a centralized hub to execute all digital marketing initiatives. You can also automate these processes using tools like Hubspot, Google Analytics and others.
Digital marketing has a low barrier to entry; instead of spending lots of money to advertise on traditional media, you can hit a targeted demographic with a smaller budget and scale up from there. Use online analytics tools to see where all the hits and misses are in your advertising structure then optimize from there.
2. Grants and Loans
Applying for grants and loans are a great way to garner funding for your business during the pandemic. The government and corporations are dispersing funding that is able to help businesses stay afloat during Covid-19.
A simple Google search of small business grants will show you all of the many resources available. Some of the most credible and efficient resources are USA.gov, Grants.gov, Small Business Administration (SBA) and your local Economic Development Corporation.
3. Local Advertising and Promotions
For small businesses that depend on foot traffic, it is important to cater to local & existing clientele. Since small businesses such as boutiques, restaurants and mom and pops shops already have a special relationship with certain customers, paying extra attention to your clientele will ensure you keep your existing revenue and maybe even garner extra revenue from referrals.
Signs placed outside of the business, including promotions catering to local customers is a great way to maximize foot traffic. A loyalty program will incentivize your loyal customers and encourage them to spread the word.
4. Communicate Covid-19 Preparedness
It’s important to communicate Covid-19 preparedness, solely because it’s a concern for everyone. Doing so will instill confidence in your prospective customers and patrons. Regardless of whether people believe that Covid-19 is real or a conspiracy, it is important that we all stay safe regardless.
Pay extra attention to details and use safety protocols such as signs that keep your customers six feet apart, practicing social distancing, providing masks, hand sanitizer and allowing a maximum number of people inside the establishment to ensure customers are safe and secure.
One of the best ways to efficiently communicate Covid preparedness is to offer contactless delivery to your customers; this will ensure that your customers don't have to leave the comfort of their own home to enjoy the service you provide. This works for the food service industry and other industries such as clothing, groceries and everyday products.
5. Increase Customer Service
During these hard times that everyone is experiencing, now more than ever, it is important to go above and beyond for your customers.This time is hard for everyone, therefore it is extremely valuable to show new & existing customers that you appreciate them. This includes accommodating special needs and paying close attention to the details. Although it may seem cliche, the best way to beat the competition is to be the best.