Reopening is always a challenge for business owners. Once you’ve been closed for a while, getting customers back can be a major struggle. Many will assume you’re closed for good; find other options while you’re gone; or unfortunately, they may forget your company altogether. That’s why a strong marketing plan is vital to a successful reopening.
You need to let your customers know you’re back in business, and you need to do it in an effective, affordable way. Tom Scarda’s Franchise Academy can give you individualized advice for this process through personal coaching. In the meantime, here are some general tips to help you get your customers back and your business rolling again.
Your marketing should always consider your audience, and safety is the first thing on everyone’s minds these days. That’s why you should center your reopening campaign on safety measures first. Make an effort to advertise everything you’re doing to prevent viral spread in your company. If you’ve redesigned your shop or office to allow for social distancing, include a before and after pic of the new look. Mention sanitizing, mask usage, and other health measures you’ve put into place for your customers and staff.
In-person safety shouldn’t be the only concern on your mind. If you have employees who are working fully or partially from home, you should also double down on your digital security measures. Many clients and customers worry that their privileged information could fall victim to data leaks and security failures. Talk to your employees about ensuring they’re working on a secure network, and make sure they know to never share their work device with friends or family members.
Embrace Digital Marketing
If you haven’t already tried out digital marketing, now is the time to give it a shot. Right now, we can’t connect through in-person means. People aren’t going out unless it’s really necessary, so many of the traditional forms of advertising - signs, billboards, posters - simply won’t do the trick. Television and radio ads either cast a small, local net, or cost a pretty penny (or, in some cases) both.
Digital advertising, however, relies on technique as much as an investment, so you can get a lot more bang out of your buck. You can purchase targeted ads that go directly to your audience - no money or airtime wasted on people who would never need your product or service. It’s also wise to lean into your social media presence. These sites provide an opportunity to connect with your customers directly, answer questions, and keep yourselves on their minds.
Investing in your digital presence, however, can’t stop at ads and profile pages. You also need to take some time to consider your website. If your excellent ads and great social media pages funnel users onto an ugly or non-functional website, it’s all for nothing. Spend some time taking a critical look at your website. Ask yourself: Is your site clean and easy to understand? Does it feature clear, useful calls to action? Are those CTAs functional links that bring the customer closer to using your product or service? A great website will serve you well, but anything less can wind up being a disservice.
Use Your Resources
Finally, it’s in your best interest to use every resource available right now. For example, you should look into some of the private and public resources to help small businesses recover from the pandemic. This is also the right time to turn toward your professional network. Peers, mentors, and industry allies can be valuable assets. You never know who has the skills or information you need to overcome an obstacle.
Reopening your company will come with challenges, but keep pushing toward your goal. With the right marketing approach, you will be able to get your business running again and back in people’s minds.