In Part 1, you updated your LinkedIn profile, reached out to new connections and looped back with previous colleagues. Now you’re ready to make a communication plan for your current clients, nurture those relationships and find new ways to reach a larger audience. Keep reading to find out how your business can survive COVID-19 with a little ingenuity.
Make Yourself Available
This may seem obvious but you need to reaffirm you’re available to your clients, whether they are new or existing connections. They’re looking to you to inform them of your new status. People are assuming that businesses are pulling back on services — you need to tell them otherwise.
Here’s how you can keep in close contact with your clients and keep them informed:
- Send a personalized email to your clients to inform them of the efforts you’re taking to deliver uninterrupted service
- Add a banner to your homepage and link it to a landing page that explains how your company is dealing with COVID-19
- Activate chat functionality on your website and dedicate a team member to reply to them during business hours
- Update your Google MyBusiness listing with your office hours and contact information
- Respond to your emails within 1-2 hours (and definitely same-day)!
Advertise Ideas, Not Products
As you’re advertising, you’ll need to expand your reach to a brand new audience with as little leg work as possible.
Remember that content we talked about for LinkedIn in Part 1? You know, the kind you write to share your knowledge and answer some FAQs? Well, it’s about to come in handy again.
When you write this type of content, you can share it across platforms as long as it lives on your website. So, if you haven’t already, it’s time to start a blog or resource archive.
This free content is designed to build trust with your audience and generate interest in your brand. You want to be the be-all, end-all source for information within your industry so your clients trust you above anyone else.
As such, your goal is to educate your clients, not sell to them. That doesn’t mean you can’t talk about products, but you need to do so in such a way that focuses on providing free value/advice first.
Once you have the content, then you need the traffic.
The simplest way to generate traffic to your site is with Display Ad campaigns on Google’s ad network or on social media like Facebook or LinkedIn. We’re now at the point where we can target users based on the websites they’ve visited and the searches they’ve typed in. That means we can reach B2B connections based on industry and what products they’re using/searching.
Exactly What Searching Buyers are Looking For
For all the companies that aren’t already ranking #1, Google is more than happy to take your money and put you there.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is wonderful if you have time and resources to spend, but if you need results right now, SEO is simply too slow. Search ads are what you’re looking for.
Never pay for someone’s attention if you can’t capitalize on that purchase.
Search ads are wonderful — they get you to the top of Google and only cost a couple of bucks for a potential client to see your company. But you have to capitalize on that investment! This means creating landing pages on your website that are specific to the product/service that you offer and funnel them into a conversation with you.
With that content in-hand, we start bringing users who are shopping for your offerings to those pages. They know what they want, they just need to find the right company to provide it to them and the right product to match their needs.
Hint: you’re that right company!
Close the Deal
Where you would have met with a client in person before, you’re now on strict government orders not to do so.
If you haven’t already, it’s time to take these conversations online. This new business model isn’t going away anytime soon, so we suggest investing in the proper equipment (a microphone and camera) to make your client’s experience even better.
Don’t Forgo the Personal Touchpoints
Before you would have taken your clients to coffee, offered them a glass of wine or even hosted them at dinner. Since you can’t be within 6ft of each other, that proves a little difficult, but it doesn’t mean you should forget about these touchpoints.
Instead, get creative and find ways to build a relationship without a shared meal. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
Use a local company that will deliver directly to your client. Our favourites include:
We Can’t Stress This Enough
For the foreseeable future, business will not be as usual. You need to take extra steps to make sure you’re nurturing your current client base, reaching out to past clients and creating new connections to keep your business alive.
The better you can communicate with the people within your industry about what’s going on and how your business is adapting, the more you can bank on coming out the other side.
- Update your social media platforms, especially LinkedIn
- Reach out to past clients
- Increase availability via phone, email and chat
- Advertise your ideas
- Use your website to sell