Whether due to illness, finances, government lockdowns, or other concerns, coming out on top of a business shutdown can feel like an insurmountable challenge. And if you’re a solopreneur, you are, by definition, going it alone. Explore the following marketing tips that are both effective and affordable.
Let’s face it: everything has changed. Whether your shutdown began last spring, last month, or last week, the business climate is continuously shifting right now, and human behavior is shifting with it. Because of all this, whatever worked for you before might not work this time around, and you need to get a handle on where your customers stand.
With all this in mind, it’s an ideal time to develop insights into your customers on a personal level. Use real-time data to gain insights into the Whos, Whats, Wheres and Hows, and apply that information towards developing an engaging message your customers can relate to.
To develop the best possible analytics, Datameer recommends looking at a broader range of data and with more details than you used to use. Let what you learn reshape your efforts, from your sales pitch to your marketing avenues to the product itself. Now is the time to be ready and willing to meet your customers on their turf, rather than just expecting them to come to you.
Be Your Best Self
Gone are the days when businesses could bluff their way through tough times. As Inc. explains, customers are putting trust ahead of other business qualities, and if you tell them one thing and they find out you’re blowing smoke, you might just lose them (and their hard-earned dollars) permanently. You must be crisp, organized, professional and transparent, showing yourself to be worthy of their business in all regards.
Keep in mind that your customers have also been through the wringer, and if you aren’t steadfast in your values, your attempts to connect with them can come across as hollow. And as Brandfolder notes, the values you convey to your customers will shape how they see you — as well as how you see yourself. Tell them your story, and do so in a way that encourages them to feel safe spending their money with you.
Speaking of feeling safe, your reopening is an ideal opportunity to convey to customers that you’re taking all appropriate precautions to keep them safe from the spread of COVID-19. Talk about what you’re doing, whether it’s sanitizing your workplace, installing air purifiers, adding plexiglass shields, incorporating contactless POS, or transitioning to fully virtual consultations.
Time is money in the business world, but when you’re watching your pennies, it’s often the most practical source of “capital” at your disposal. Happily, there are several ways to promote your business without spending a single cent. Perhaps now is a good time to host a webinar, build a referral program or do some personal networking. Make sure to collect email addresses from all possible sources and use them effectively.
Social media is a free or low-cost option, too, and if you toss in a hashtag of your very own design, it can simultaneously help you with both analytics and outreach. If you play your cards right, it might even help your brand go viral.
And remember that just because you’re alone at the helm, you don’t have to travel a lonely road. If you do have the funds available, you may want to invest in a social media manager to handle your social media accounts. You can find these professionals through online staffing agencies (the social media manager hourly rate is typically between $14 and $35 per hour).
Are you ready for the next phase of your business? Reopening is challenging, but if you do so properly, you’ll be set up for success.
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About the Writer
Naomi Johnson created lifebasedbusiness.net for small business owners, creatives, solopreneurs, boss babes and bros, and side-hustlers who are committed to designing their careers to accommodate how they want to live, instead of the other way around. Through her site, Naomi offers practical advice and inspiration to help others adopt the life-based business mentality and change their lives in immensely positive, fulfilling ways.