Let’s be super, hella, crazy clear: this shit sucks for everyone. Each industry is pleaing for help – “save the restaurant industry!” “save the events industry!” “save the beauty industry!” – Fuck, man, save all of it. SAVE IT ALL. And for that matter? Save all of us from this nasty COVID-19 virus.
I’m in a very interesting position (and always have been) – I am hearing from business owners from all these industries (and more). I’m seeing how things are going for them, hearing their struggles, and hearing their super creative marketing solutions. We’re in this unique position where we’ve been skating (and I don’t mean literally skating, business is hard for everyone) on the same ways of doing things for so long, that we’re forced to get out of our comfort zones and do things that we wouldn’t normally.
Now is the time to get really creative. Like, REALLY creative. I’ve got clients who are restaurants who are completely changing their menus for appropriate take-out options for them and their businesses. Cyclebar Red Mill let me rent a bike and is holding online classes in a private group while the studio is closed. OWN Real Estate is paying it forward and helping local restaurants and the Foodbank with their posts (go follow them on Facebook and check it out). I’m doing product sessions for some of my clients from the safety of my house. I’m buying gift cards and things from family and friends and small businesses that I love while I still can – to have something to look forward to when this is all over. I’ve gotten and given so many reviews over the last few weeks that I can’t count them all.
If we’ve learned anything so far with this COVID-19 pandemic, it’s that we’re all connected. The butterfly effect is real – the minute one industry has to change, the rest of our lives change. We know someone who’s been furloughed or laid off (if we’re not that person). We’ve lost jobs, clients, events. Our new normal is that there is no normal, and everything is fluid, fucking weird, and no one knows what to do about it.
Here’s the thing: there’s not a right answer. There isn’t a magical marketing tip that I can give you – except this. Don’t give up, don’t give in, and never, ever surrender. You started this business because you believe in your talents and abilities – and you’ve been successful thus far because others see that, too. Be transparent in this time. Stop trying to be perfect. No one expects perfection, just professionalism and honesty.
I’ve always said that people hire people that they know, like, and trust, and it’s SO clear to me that I have some incredible clients that have clients and customers rallying around their companies during this turbulence. It’s encouraging.
So let’s not lie: this shit sucks. It sucks bad. No one wants to be stuck and out of their routine for this long. No one wants to not be able to go to work or serve the way that they intended. But the people who survive? They’re the ones who adapt. That’s the case for business in any place or time, not just in this nightmare that we’re all living in. We’re being forced to do things in a way we never thought we’d have to – but it’s proving to make us stronger, better business owners. And there’s a light at the end of the tunnel, right? There has to be.
How are you adapting? I want to share it – I want to tell people about it. It’s been the highlight and most positive thing in my life these past few weeks. And if you need help? I’m always here. Just ask.