In a matter of days, the COVID-19 pandemic hit the global economy like an earthquake, with many businesses and organizations shuttering their doors to mitigate the spread of the virus. For many businesses, the shutdown would spell doom if not for the opportunity to offer curbside service and online-sales driven delivery options.
Yet the closed doors and empty streets can make it difficult for customers to know you are still open. Luckily, there are still ways to help your loyal customers know that you are still in business amid lockdown – if you get creative. Let’s take a look at 3 unique ways to let your customers know you are still ready for their business during COVID-19.
1. Revamp Your Social Media Presence
While it may seem like a no-brainer to have a strong social media presence for your business, you would be surprised how many businesses – big and small – don’t take advantage of their social media presence to engage with customers online. As more customers than never are now stuck at home amid shutdowns and work-from-home orders, the online marketplace just became the hottest spot to shop.
Take time to do an audit on your social media and website presence, and analyze whether or not you are taking full advantage of the opportunities available through ad-driven posts and organic content. With the right combination of engaging content and a robust social media marketing plan, you can reach current and potential customers with content that reminds them that your services and products are still available. Offer social media-specific special offers to encourage purchases and watch as your traffic grows from the at-home market.
2. Take Your Sales Online
Similar to your online social media presence, the ability to offer your products or services through an online ordering option is vital. For bars, restaurants, and coffee shops, having the ability to allow customers to order ahead online and swing by for a quick curbside pickup will keep customers flowing through your “virtual” doors.
The more creative and convenient you get with your online sales, the more likely customers are to either venture out for a quick stop by your physical location or pick something up for delivery online. If you haven’t started online ordering yet, now is the time to jump on the bandwagon – as this trend is not likely to go anywhere once the lockdowns lift!
3. Offer Community-Focused Social Services
One way to engage with your customers during any crisis is to offer your brand as part of the solution to the problem your community is facing. According to Lisa Laventure, Director of Strategic Communications at online businesses commerce company Lightspeed, the ability of your company to communicate with customers with shared values is vital to not only getting noticed but inviting customers to join you in the mission:
“Companies that are more in touch with their customers and brand will be the ones that succeed. These are the moments when you fall back on your values… It’s not the time to market and promote, it’s the time to stick up for your customers.”
In moments of crisis, try to find ways to invite your customers to join you in helping support the cause. During COVID-19, many local bars and restaurants have found creative ways to support frontline healthcare workers with donation-driven food and drink deliveries, toilet paper and hand sanitizer drives, and more.
Not only do these methods involve your customers in the mission of your own company values, but being around your brand will remind them of your products and services when they are ready for what you are offering!
Just Because Your Doors Are Shut Doesn’t Have To Mean You Are
With the right combination of creative methods to reach your customers in the age of COVID-19, you can ensure that your business remains vibrant and thriving, even without people in your physical location. In fact, you may discover that you are even more successful than before as you add new ways to engage your customers in ways that only a global pandemic could offer!