Updated: Sep 10, 2020
The name of the game in the current environment is "engagement". In the wake of the country-wide shut down due to COVID-19, businesses have been forced to suspend operations, change their location, become virtual, and several more adaptations. Here are 10 simple ways to engage with your prospects and clients.
Reach out to them - Reach out to your prospects and clients, using multiple methods, and see how they are doing. Maybe they haven't ordered a product and were a regular customer in the past. Notice who you are missing in your place of business, or in your online platform, and check in with them.
Listen - Contact your prospects and clients and make sure you listen carefully to what is going on in their world. If we have learned anything from COVID, it's the value of connectedness. Have they lost their job? Are they juggling kids in virtual school while they work from home? Is it their first week back into the office? Pay attention!
Make it personal - If you are dealing with a large volume of prospects and clients, invest in a quality CRM and take great notes. You may be able to remember the details about the people you see regularly, but when those contacts number into the thousands, rely on tech support to get you there. Annotate any information that will be valuable to know when you call them back the next time.
Build community - Some business owners I work with recently chose to give to their community during COVID and it has paid them back well! Do what you can, whether it is offering free services to first responders and healthcare workers, donating masks, providing food, or any other way of building a positive sense of community. Good karma goes around.
Have fun! - Just because the business climate has changed doesn't mean it has to be miserable. Think of ways to engage your clients, prospects, and employees in fun activities. Host a yoga class, do a virtual trivia night, or really anything that would be entertaining and fun for your target audience.
Offer something special - It doesn't have to be big and costly. Offer discounts where appropriate. Give a gift with purchase if you can. Include personally addressed notes. Many people are without interaction right now. Do what you can to let them know how special they are
Be honest - Every business is experiencing delays and frustrations right now due to various supply chain and logistic issues. Be honest with your clients and let them know that the normal shipping time is twice as long right now. You can't control that, you have to roll with it.
Go social - Social Media has jumped in usage during COVID. We can't interact fact-to-face as we are accustomed to, so people are reaching out through social channels. Make sure you have a social media presence for your business.
Know the rules - There are several variations of local, state, and federal "rules" regarding COVID depending upon your business type. Watch the Executive Orders posted by your governor and follow them closely. There are plenty of creative ways to operate and follow the rules at the same time.
Be a safe space - There is a lot of fear in our global environment at this time. Be a safe space for your clients and prospects. If you have a physical storefront, make sure it is cleaned and sanitized regularly. Make sure your employees understand the value in providing the feeling of safety in your space.