Article by Jeff Bevis
The COVID-19 pandemic has wrought a huge amount of tragedy on the nation and the world. Loss of life, loss of health, loss of income and more have all made this the most challenging time in recent memory.
Those impacts should not be downplayed, but it is important to note that, on the business side of things, the outlook is not completely negative. The need for goods and services has not gone away. In fact, you could make the case that a surge of demand is coming as local lockdowns are eased.
The U.S. economy is driven by consumer purchases. Those purchases are not going away, but they will be reshaped by the pandemic to some extent. Business owners should keep themselves open to new opportunities, allowing their businesses to be reshaped in ways that can help them survive and even thrive. Here are three things to look for in post-COVID business opportunities.
1) Focus on Connection
Right now, it is vital to strengthen connections with your existing customers. Their habits and preferences are rapidly changing due to the pandemic, and you must show them your business is meeting them where they are now.
Examine all the ways you can connect and do business with your customers, especially when it comes to social distancing, online ordering and no- or low-contact services. Pay particular attention to the ways you are not communicating with your customers now. In the new normal, businesses must be able to connect with customers remotely and vice versa. There is no alternative to that requirement.
2) Create Synergy
Examine your existing business plan and infrastructure and identify what other products or services you are equipped to offer to expand or diversify your business now. What existing equipment, trained staff, transportation network and more can you adapt to offer a new, different product or service? Find a need that fits your existing operation, and fill it.
3) Give Peace of Mind
Look at your business through your customers’ eyes. What do they need right now to increase their peace of mind or give them added assurance during COVID-19? Think about ways you can alter your marketing, web presence and branding to bolster that trust and reassurance. They need to know that they are safer doing business with a pandemic-prepared business like you.
Reimagining and changing your business is not going to be easy, but don’t give up. Just because you used to operate a certain way doesn’t mean it’s the best opportunity in these difficult times. And just because things have changed doesn’t mean your opportunities for success are now limited.
Open your mind to all the possible ideas to adapt, stay nimble, and reinvent your business for success that will span many years ahead.