Maintaining Customer Connections in a Crisis
It’s important for all businesses to maintain a “top of mind” presence on a regular basis. If you want people to remember you when they have a need or when they have an opportunity to share a referral, you have to ensure that your messages are relevant (that they describe what you do and how you are different), that they are timely, and that they are memorable.
But how do you do that in the midst of a crisis?
It’s easy for “critical” companies. In the current economic climate as we deal with the COVID-19 crisis, healthcare companies obviously can send relevant, timely and memorable messages all day long. But how can others, who are less critical, and perhaps not even deemed essential, stay connected with their customers and followers, so that their business remains viable?
Don’t be afraid to share
The COVID-19 crisis has caused a great deal of disruption for ALL companies and consumers. Don’t be afraid to share information specific to how your business has adjusted or pivoted and how you can help customers. Share information about your hours, how you can be reached and how people can do business with you, and what you’re doing to ensure that you and your customers are safe.
You can also share critical information that may be outside of your core business that impacts your customers. If your audience includes seniors, share information that they might want to know, like senior shopping hours. If your audience includes parents who may be struggling with managing their children’s e-learning, share tips that may make it more manageable. Share positive and inspirational messages. Share information about how to support other local businesses.
Set up ways for people to reach you and be sure that you respond
Nothing is more frustrating, during a crisis or not, than reaching out to businesses and not hearing back. Be sure that you or your staff are “manning” emails, phones, inboxes on social media. Being responsive, even if you have been forced to close temporarily is critical to ensure that people know that they can count on you when you return to business as usual.
Make “learning more” easy and fun
Sales messaging may fall flat at this time. But you can certainly take advantage of your customers’ and potential customers’ “free time” by offering educational information that will get them engaged and encourage them to think about ways that they can use your products and services in the future. Setting up virtual training, automated email series designed to educate, etc are activities that can fill your pipeline with leads who will be interested in your products and services down the road.
Now is a perfect time to go digital. Websites, social media pages, email marketing are all ways that you can communicate, develop and strengthen relationships, and even secure sales now. Using this time to explore ways that you can either start or enhance your use of these tools is a great way to ensure that you will maintain a viable presence in your market once things return to normal. The fact is that right now, for many businesses, digital communications and marketing is the backbone to their survival. Don’t ignore its power and impact.
We are here to help you develop marketing and communications strategies and systems that will engage your customers and prospects, even in times of crisis. For more information about how we can assist you, please contact us.