What's the Lockdown plan for your beautiful butterfly?
Emerging from the last few months with a polished or completely new business is a fabulous feeling - so for the rest of 2020, let's continue to get out of bed, put on our shoulder pads and teach our business how to fly.
The days are shorter, the temperature outside is chilly and lockdown is a really great excuse to binge on telly. And for me, the 1st December basically means it's Christmas, so I sign off for the year - but this is a great opportunity to work ON your business and be proper ready for 2021. We've all learnt lessons this year, so use them by being prepared and focused, with a plan.
You've got this by the balls, babe.
(There's a lot of metaphors here and I'm pretty sure you cant teach a business how to fly...)
TOP TIP: Perfect Planning and Preparation Prevents Piss Poor Performance
Having a general plan in place for when business is a bit slow is my #TopTipOfTheMonth because it will stop you questioning your career choices and then probably giving up altogether. Start by creating a list of things you can do, that will:
Keep you focused and motivated on your business, i.e. the stuff you enjoy
Stay in touch with and support your current clients and audience
Keep your business name out there and grow your network
Get some new promotional ideas going about how you can generate a buzz about town
Update your website, create blog and social media content, design some cool marketing materials
Declutter, do the boring stuff and just get organised
4 Things To Do For Your Business During Lockdown
1. Are you open for Business?
Firstly, let everyone know if you are still open and on what basis (business as usual, Zoom only, click and collect, reduced hours, etc). Or if you are closed, when will you be returning and what will happen to current business in the meantime (have you postponed or cancelled all bookings and made relevant refunds or transferrals, etc)?
2. Reach out to current clients
Then, if you have a current client base, ask them if they are OK and remind them you are still here to give support. This could also be a great time to have a review with each of your clients and see if their current needs are being met and if there is anything else you can do for them.
(I actually doubled my monthly income from my clients, after the last lockdown by doing this)
3. Show up for your audience and keep it growing
Next, now is not the time to take a break - in between your DIY and Netflix, keep and grow your audience. Whether it's your newsletter, blog post, podcast, YouTube video, Facebook update or Instagram story - entertain, inspire and support. Offer your amazing advice and knowledge for free (this is not the same as offering your services for free and therefore you wont be mugging yourself off - this is you being generous). And don't feel it has to be business 24/7 - share some funny stuff or personal stuff too - but only if you are comfortable with it.
4. Advertise, Offers and Incentives
Now, in my opinion, if any one tells you it's inappropriate to sell your services at the moment, they're WRONG! The economy needs you right now, so keep promoting your best bits, especially if you have something that people will need over this month.
And if there is any tailored advice you can provide to support people, why not grow your mailing list by asking them to sign up to your blog / newsletter first. Or if you are running a special offer at this time to help your customers financially - great! Promote it heartily.
Create your graphics digitally and promote them over social media and email marketing - all of which can be FREE.
5 Things To Do For Your Business Before 2021
1. Plan your marketing - break 2021 into quarters and look at the year ahead. What does a year look like in your industry and for your target audience? When will you launch a new product, service, offer or discount? Will you introduce another stream of income, such as a book or training course? Which of your services will do best at what time of the year? How will you promote in each quarter and what is your budget / target income?
See my Marketing Planner 2021
2. Blog with something to say - if you don't really use your blog or don't have one at all, time to change all that. As well as helping drive traffic to your website, blogs will shine a light on your industry expertise, skills, knowledge and experience. You can provide your audience with 'awareness content', such as advice, tips and useful materials. These posts can then be re-purpose into smaller social media content to reach a wider audience. Get 12 posts in the bank, before the end of the year.
PS And don't feel like you are giving away industry secrets, therefore people will no longer need to hire you - a step by step blog post doesn't replace you and the service you offer.
Awareness content will reach your wider audience and create you more leads
3. Explore new social media platforms - not yet dabbed in videos, podcasting or LIVE Facebook streams? Me neither but that doesn't mean everyone else is wrong. Just because you don't like something - actually, for your ideal client, it might the trigger for them to follow you and eventually buy from you. And who knows - you might actually smash it out of the park and become a podcasting influencer or YouTube celeb.
I will be starting a podcast - so watch this space!
4. Network online - if you hate going to networking events or never have the time to network - GREAT! Now is your time to shine. Networking online is hot right now. Get on Linked In and social media to make those new connections for 2021. Join support groups of like minded business peeps, fish out people that interest you and comment on their content. Find businesses in your local area and ping them an email to say "Hi, how are you doing? How has 2020 been for you? Need any help, advice or support?" And likewise, let them know they are needed - ask them for advice on how they are preparing their business for 2021.
There's a lot that can come from actually contacting people and making new business relationships
5. Get ready for 2021
What is going to be your big focus in the January? What services of yours will people need when it's turns 2021? How can you tailor a special offer to suit and entice your ideal client? Perhaps launch a new service or unveil your shiny new website? It will be a fresh start for everyone, so don't underestimate this opportunity.
Whatever you come up with - plan and promote it NOW!
Facebook Live - The Complete Guide to Live Streaming
Podcasting - How to Start A Podcast
YouTube Channel - How To Create A YouTube Account
Video Equipment - Ways To Create A Video on Different Budgets
Free Marketing Design tool - Canva
Free Email Marketing tool - Mail Chimp
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