How to Stay Connected with Your Customers During a Pandemic
Like everyone, small businesses are doing a lot of adapting to sudden and unanticipated changes in the world. The Coronavirus has disrupted everything about how we shop, play, interact, learn, and communicate. And no one has been hit harder than small businesses.
The good news is, you can still stay connected to your customers by adjusting to evolving customer behaviors. Here are a few ideas:
Offer alternative ways to communicate.
Research shows that 90% of consumers prefer to communicate with businesses via chat and text, but very few businesses are equipped to do so. What can you do?
- Put a chatbot on your website that allows your customers to communicate with you wherever they are.
- Increase your social media presence
- Collect text opt-ins allowing you to send your customers text messages
Offer alternative ways to purchase.
You want to protect your customers and employees from the Coronavirus, but you also want to protect your business from losing revenue. Here are a few ways to continue doing business.
- Sell your products online—either on your website or on social media.
- Offer delivery or curbside pickup for orders
- Allow your customers to set up private appointments to come into your store, or set special hours that some of your older clientele can come in and shop without worry.
- Sell online gift certificates customers can use at a later date.
Be clear in what your business is doing to keep employees and customers safe from the Coronavirus.
Customers want reassurance today that your business is following the recommended steps for preventing the spread of the Coronavirus. They also may not know that your business is still open or how you’ll continue operating.
- Send out an email to customers detailing the changes to your hours, policies, and procedures.
- Post new policies and changes on your website and social media regarding how your business will operate.
Become a resource for your customers.
Think outside the box—how can you continue to provide value to your customers, even if your traditional services are not available?
- Teach a class on how to create something using your products. Record or livestream it from your website.
- Offer a webinar to customers that allows them to ask questions and interact with you during the session.
- Write blog posts and articles giving customers helpful information, tips, and tricks of value.
For more insights on marketing strategy that actually works for small business, connect with Jay Bean, Founder of FreshLime and Small Business Marketing Expert on LinkedIn and Twitter. If any of these tips have helped you or if you have anything to add, please comment below. We’d love to hear from you!