As David “Bumble” Lloyd would say when the last over was balled and it was time to get ready (to leave in his case)
But to borrow Bumble’s catchphrase for a moment, I think we need to ‘start the car’ and get ready to open the doors again.
As I write this on Tuesday 28th April, it looks increasingly likely that the lockdown will begin to be eased over the coming weeks. It has to in my opinion, it is an economic necessity.
Businesses of all sizes need cashflow. Yes the big ones have deeper pockets and can ride it out for longer, but they all need the cash coming in daily to cover the payroll and pay essential bills and suppliers.
Because the truth is, we’re all co-dependent.
Those suppliers are in exactly the same boat as us.
They need to get money in to get the cashflow flowing again. That’s the way the economy works right?
Most employers/businesses are sensible and will ensure measures are in place to safeguard the health & safety of their staff & customers.
I know there’s a strong argument for holding off and leaving lockdown restrictions as they are because of the fear of a second wave of COVID19 but the truth is, we simply can’t afford to.
We have to take tentative steps to begin easing out of this paralysis we’re in, because if we don’t, then a lot of small to medium sized businesses won’t recover, they will be past the ‘tipping point’ if they aren’t already.
Some businesses have already gone. I’m dreading how many pubs will go for example.
We have 3 in our village. One of them was doing a ‘dinner to door’ service initially but I’ve not heard much from them in the past 10 days, the other two I’ve not heard a peep from. And I really need one of them to survive:)
Bear in mind, we live about 10 minutes walk at the most from any of them.
No leaflet/flyer, no letter, nothing on social media, nothing in the local farm shop (don’t get me started on them), zilch, rien, nada. I have every sympathy for small local businesses, we champion them and buy from them regularly.
But for the love of God I have to wonder at their marketing nous.
Or lack of it.
If I was cruel, I’d question if they deserve to stay afloat. But I’m not cruel, ask my wife. I want these businesses to survive and thrive but they just don’t help themselves.
Please, do something. Keep in touch with your existing clients, by phone, by text/whatsapp, email, letter or leaflet/flyer.
Ask them how you can help?
Put your heads together, brainstorm, think of things you can do to make sure a) your customers don’t forget you and b) you make some money until the doors are opened wide again
What about a marketing joint venture with another local business?
As my mum used to say to me “where there’s a will, there’s a way”
And there is.
Marketing is the primary function of any business. The product or service you sell is pretty much secondary. You could literally be selling widgets, it doesn’t matter.
Your job is to get the word out to your ideal potential clients and:
- tell ‘em you have something for them
- what it will do for them and
- how to get it.
Easy? Not always.
If it was we’d all be rich and not worrying about when the lockdown lifts and how safe it is to go back to work.
But you have to keep at it. Never stop marketing, never stop getting the word out, by whatever method you choose, preferably the one that gets you the most leads whilst costing the least amount of money.
Customer acquisition cost and lifetime customer value are 2 figures you need to know. (If you want to know how to work them out, ask me)
Your marketing – whether you like it or not – will determine how quickly your business gets back on it’s feet when the doors open.
When you get the leads in, all you got to do is convert them into customers and keep them, nurture them. Invest in them. They will give you the best return on investment in marketing terms you could ever wish for.
If you need any help with ideas, strategy or of course, actual words that help you get a lead or an order, please get in touch, but in any case, stay safe and I’ll see you on the other side…