If you are experiencing a moment when you are wondering if it is even worth pouring more effort into your stagnating business, this will be a good time to remind you that you are not the only person who has experienced 2020 and 2021. If you still have a business, you are ahead of the curve. Take a look around you. There are plenty of business people that didn’t do what was necessary to survive the recession. They have already hung up their spurs. You are still in the fight. That means you still have a chance to win.
You absolutely can’t afford to stop investing in your business, especially if your business is your only source of income. You might need to use some of that home equity to finance your business investment for a while. You can even get a home equity loan with bad credit. That is a good thing because if you are like a lot of people, your credit score might have slipped a few points since the pandemic. Relax. You are not in the penalty box. You are still in the field of play. So don’t stop investing in your business. And while you are at it, be sure to continue doing the following.
People are not going to stop going to stores forever. This is the perfect time for you to reinforce your brand. The most successful businesses recognized that a lot of people were stuck at home binge-watching TV and movies practically all day, every day. Those were people in the perfect situation to be reminded of the brands they would continue to need when this present trial has passed. Even if you are not doing TV, this is a pretty good time for doing display advertising that just reminds people you are still there.
The interesting thing about 2020 is that a lot of people were still willing to spend money. They just had no way of knowing which businesses were still doing business. If you closed temporarily, it is even more important that you properly communicate your reopening plans. The holiday shopping season will be even more difficult for shoppers because of chip shortages and shipping constraints. They are going to face a lot of disappointment when they realize that they can’t get the items they want to purchase in time for the holidays. You can help by not only letting them know you are still open but by letting them know what you have in stock. This is going to be a banner year for small businesses that actually have products to sell.
This is not the time to circle your wagons and become insular. You have to stay engaged with the market and with your competition. You have to stay price competitive no matter how desperate things might seem. Sure, it makes a certain kind of sense to crank up prices when times are tough. Indeed, the market can bear some of that. But the moment your customers feel like you are taking advantage of the situation, they will abandon you.
You have to remember that you are not the only one out there trying to keep their head above water. This is one of those times where you might want to go with a smaller margin to increase traffic. Many of the new people who come your way will stay with you when things get back to normal. You can never give up on competing.
Innovation is not just for giant tech companies that are literally building the future. It is for every business person who has to come up with new and interesting ways to bring new customers into the fold. It includes new and interesting promotions, even business models. Many companies had to learn a new way to do business in 2020 that they hadn’t even considered in 2019. They continued to innovate through the issues and they are now in a good place. You can get there, as well, as long as you keep those innovative juices flowing.
No one will deny that businesses are facing tough challenges these days. If you want to make it through to the other side, however, you need to stay one step ahead of the obstacles trying to hold you back. And ultimately, don’t stop investing, advertising, competing, or innovating.