Your typical Sales season is almost always marked by surprises and uncertainties. But nothing will have quite the sweeping effect on businesses all around the globe like the Coronavirus outbreak. For businesses, the next three months are going to be crucial. With the Covid-19 cases on the rise, people are not looking forward to going out and spending their money. However, the next 6-10 months is expected to see the biggest surge in the number of online shoppers.
“So, how businesses respond to these predicted trends in the coming weeks could make or break them”
As a digital marketing agency, we know the nagging questions you may be asking yourself.
How do I get my sales team to function?
With most of the face-to-face meetings likely to either get postponed or cancelled, what should I do about the sales?
Questions abound in businesses hit by the pandemic. Don’t worry, our expert marketers have come together to guide you through the difficult times while giving tips for organising your sales and workflow to fit the prevailing conditions.
So let’s organise, educate and get to work.
Taking care of your team in these challenging times
How is it even possible to organise your team when it’s working remotely? Well, actually you have various reliable technologies designed to help you stay connected in times like these.
“Make sure that your employees educate themselves about COVID-19, I mean everything from its symptoms to safety measures”.
Remember, there are a plethora of sensational media resources to keep your employees on their toes, but your job, by contrast, should be to offer timely information, not to use scare tactics. I mean, you don’t need to give them a constant reminder about the deadliness of the virus.
Helping your team take control of the situation
Train the local managers to help employees protect themselves against COVID and follow all the guidelines. Explain to your employees how working together as a team can help you overcome the challenge. Clear any doubts and fears your employees may have at this time. Pay attention to their questions and try to find practical solutions to their problems. Make sure to establish a steady communication between you, managers and your team. In times like these, staying connected, as opposed to coming together, is the best way forward. As long as you can stay well connected with all team members, your performance should not be a problem.
Should you get a Coronavirus response team?
Now, this next step may only be required depending on the size of your organisation. Bringing in a response team will help you keep track of sales channels, set up contingency plans and ensure employee welfare. This team comes with crisis management skills and can take care of different departments in your organisation. You can certainly rely on their ability to perform maximum damage control and analyse your financial soundness before making key decisions.
Also, make sure not to build just any plan and get on with it. You need a carefully structured plan that is long-term and flexible. However, make sure to conduct virtual meetings every 24 hours to discuss the progress and changes that need to be made. Always be ready to make those tweaks in your strategy according to changes in this crisis. Remember it’s all about adjustments while remaining focused on your goals.
Irrespective of the extent to which your business has been hit, it’s still a good time for you to go digital.
While it could really bog down the economy, many businesses can come away from it in one piece, owing to the advanced communication channels that help them to work remotely and thrive. Now, a couple of decades ago, an outbreak of this scale would have had a significantly more catastrophic effect on the global economy. Without today’s communication channels, businesses would have been forced to either shut down altogether or operate from offices, eventually resulting in employees catching the virus.
The advent of advanced communication systems means that we don’t have to worry about any of those problems. Now you can use various powerful tools to manage projects and communicate with your team at the comfort of your room. In fact, quarantine could be a silver lining in that you can use this chance to work on new tools and explore online learning platforms. Businesses should use their time effectively and discover new opportunities online.
With more and more people working from home, the installation rate of online communication platforms like Zoom and WeChat is officially off the charts. Industries such as healthcare and Logistics are also increasingly adopting the technologies.
Here are some positive business stories from post-COVID-19 China to get you going:
Once the outbreak was contained, the Chinese started to gradually re-open their market. Unsurprisingly, the Chinese people didn’t rush en-mass to the supermarkets and restaurants. Only a few people turned up for shopping at stores as against the huge number of people who continued to buy things online because they probably didn’t want to take any chances with their health. Plus, most of these restaurants and supermarkets had made their products available online, meaning that they did not lose out on their audience, rather they just changed the way they sold their products.
As you can see, being digital allows you to not only adapt to new changes but help you discover new growth opportunities and nurture relationships. Here are some to focus on;
Optimise your digital communication
Some of the highly anticipated events by Google got cancelled. However, it didn’t stop them going ahead with their plan. You should certainly follow the suit. Instead of cancelling the face-to-face meetings with your clients, you should try to arrange a Skype video call with them. All you have to do is to notify them before they start cancelling the event. Take this opportunity to learn how to use as many messengers as possible. The idea is to be able to use any messenger your clients may be comfortable using.
Invest in new content
Creating new content is something you should do on a regular basis. Given the increased amount of time people will now spend online, you need to be ready with brand-new content to engage them. You can turn your offline event into webinar content. Do regular reach out to your LinkedIn and Facebook audience. With people spending more time on social media, it will be a lot easier to identify and connect with your business prospects. Collaborate with designers and creative marketers and build a content strategy that not only informs but converts.
Join the resistance
In these challenging times, it takes a great deal of compassion and generosity to invest your time and energy into resisting COVID -19. Don’t think of it as your civil duty, rather, think of it as offering humanity a helping hand when it desperately needed it. Even the smallest contribution you make can go a long way in combating COVID -19. In China, we saw businesses producing medical equipment and healthcare software. Think of the different ways in which your products or services could help.
The Mr Digital team has done just that by creating Marketing aid packages to help small businesses through these difficult times. Marketing Aid Packages are our way of giving back to the community and helping small businesses survive these difficult times. We want businesses to find marketing affordable and get all the resources to grow their business online so we’ve allocated 5 of our marketing experts to this cause, working with small businesses over the next 3 months.
Keep calm, keep marketing
Don’t worry, while we are in for uncertain times, soon the market will resume operation and everything will return to normality. Nothing lasts forever, especially not pandemics.
Over the years, countries and economies have undergone turbulent transition and disasters. Needless to say, every time they came away with more wisdom and experience. As a digital marketing agency, our advice to businesses is to do the following:
- Take measures to sustain human connections and relationship with existing clients
- Set up steady connectivity to exchange messages with colleagues and clients
- Help your clients stand their ground.
Remember, with mutual assistance, you can maintain these relationships. And once everything is back to normal, these enduring relationships will help you rebuild and thrive.
Stay safe and take care!
All the best from Mr Digital