Keeping Your Customers Informed: Communication Is Key
At a time like this, knowing what to do next can feel like a daunting task if you’re a business owner. It’s also becoming increasingly difficult for employees as it’s impacted everyone’s work lives to some degree.
For some of us, that means working from home. For others, that means completely changing the way they do business. And unfortunately, for some, that means business has stopped altogether.
No matter which category you fall in, there is one important thing you can do right now, and continue to do for your customers: communicate.
Letting your customers know the state of your business will be key in weathering this storm. Keep in mind that there isn’t anyone else out there right now communicating how things at your business have changed, so it will be up to you to keep them informed. Here are some of the ways you can easily do that:
1. Social Media
If ever there were a time for social media to thrive, this would be it. It is an incredibly effective way to talk directly to your customers and tell them exactly what you want to say. Two great examples of this in action is the social channels of Midtown Market and Dry Ground Brewing. Midtown Market has been posting updates about restocking their shelves with high-demand items and Dry Ground is regularly posting their daily schedule and specific instructions for their to-go sales.
With many of us following orders from leadership and sheltering in place, social media is a great place to reach consumers. It’s also a great resource for those seeking out your services. This is where you can provide them with the most up to date information possible.
If you thought that email marketing was dead, think again! It was flourishing prior to this crisis, and it has served a critical role in communicating information to the masses as we navigate this pandemic. Brands across the board, many of which you forgot or didn’t even know you opted into their mailing list, used email to put out statements regarding their COVID-19 updates.
For some, this was precautionary, such as Kroger’s statement on the steps they are taking to both keep shelves stocked and stores clean. For others, such as Walgreens, it was an opportunity to let customers know of updated store hours and their temporary free shipping for prescriptions and essential items. Our digital inboxes continue to be a great source for up-to-the-minute information. So if you have a mailing list and some news to share, this would be a great time to do it.
Website: It might not be the first place they look, and it might not be the easiest thing to update, but if you can, update any messaging on your website to let your customers know what’s going on. Arguably, the most effective way of doing this is by adding a colorful banner toward the top of your site, and then link that to a page with all of your updated information, if necessary.
Make sure it’s plainly visible and easy to read so your customers can be informed as easily as possible. And, don’t worry if you don’t have any additional information, if a short message keeps your customers informed, that’s all you need.
4. Google My Business:
Google has been proactive in reaching out to the admins of Google My Business pages, encouraging business owners to keep their profiles up to date. Here, you can add or remove hours of operation, update phone numbers and further explain any changes your business is undergoing. Any information you would update on your website or send out in an email or social post can be echoed here. Remember, many users might be using Google as their primary source for information, so be sure yours is up to date.
Using one, or all, of these methods will help to keep your customers in the know and up to date on the status of your business. Are you having a sale? Let them know! Are you operating a limited schedule for the time being? They need to know! Did you recently get restocked on some long out of stock items? Tell them!
Just remember to keep those lines of communication as open as possible, as your customers probably have more questions than ever right now. Be there to answer them! If you have any questions about the best way to communicate with your customers know that we are here to help. You can drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.