In 5 Tips for Small Busineses During COVID-19 Pandemic (Do's), I go through a few things to help you keep pace with your business in these trying times.
I would be remiss to not give you a few things you should NOT be doing. It can be easy to get caught up in grasping for straws. So, let's address things you should avoid to help your business survive.
Do not offer deep discounts.
Now is not the time to run a huge sale. Sales are for getting rid of stock to make room for more, increase brand awareness, or price competing. As a small business, during this time, it's completely ok to not stand strong on your pricing. Consumers are well aware of the circumstances.
If you must discount, keep it simple. Don't cut into profit that you will need to help keep your business afloat. Once the world is right side up again, feel free to follow up with a huge discount of thanks.
Don't waste money running a ton of ads.
Right now, every dollar counts. This may seem counter-intuitive, but hear me out. Finances may become tight (if they aren't already #smallbusinesslife). You want to spend your money on things you know are revenue generating. Running social media ads will cast a wide net for you, but it doesn't give a guarunteed ROI.
Also, if everyone turns to paid advertising, it will be no different than simply posting. Oversaturation will happen. Consumers will ignore it all. Suggestion: Ask your audience if they can't purchase, to please share with friends and family to help you spread the word about your products or services. Give them language and, even, graphics to share.
Do not use guilt marketing.
Mentioning that you are a small business is completely fine. Sharing your story of surivival in an uncertain time is completely fine. Beating people up with content full of "you shouldn't be buying from big stores because they have money" is not fine.
Consumers have needs. They will do whatever is neccessary to meet them. As businesses, we shouldn't beat them up for choosing convience and familiarity in this time. Try to avoid guilting them into giving you their money. Who you are and what you offer is enough.
Do not forget to support other businesses.
Of course, you want all the money for yourself. So, why am I recommending that you support other small businesses? Now is a great time to show unity. You don't have to support your competitors, but it's a great time show that you, too, support and believe in small businesses.
Help other businesses expand their reach by sharing with your audience or making a lot of noise when you patronize them. Comment, like, and interact on their content as much as you can. More than likely they will reciprocate and before you know it, there is a movement happening.
Do NOT stop.
The next couple of weeks will be challenging as small businesses work to adjust to what is happening globaly. Be creative, be persistent, and keep going. Many cities are offering assistance for businesses where they can. Please keep an eye out and be smart about your decisions.
As I stated in the Do's post, you’re a small business. This fact is a superpower in times like we are facing. So, don’t fret. Dig your heels in and prove why small businesses are the backbone of our economy.
Jacqui Jones, CEO