For all the latest news and information from ThinkSmart Software.
For all the latest news and information from ThinkSmart Software.
With government lockdowns in full effect (both Australia and the UK have seen closures and restrictions since the end of March), many entrepreneurs are looking for ways to improve their business from home. If you own a small business where you cannot work from home, like a swim school, for example, then it's easy to feel like you're riding out a storm instead of actively improving your enterprise.
There are ways, however, that you can analyse your business and make improvements to it, even though you're sitting at home. Below are five things, in particular, you can utilise to improve your business from the comfort and safety of your residence.
Enhance Your Web Presence
Most small businesses have a website. Many personalised instruction places (like places that teach gymnastics, for example) use their website for marketing, payment collection, and describing the services they offer. Most businesses also have some form of social media, such as Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.
However, many businesses have a website in place and then let it languish. They may have social media accounts, but they don't post to them very frequently. While you're inside, now's the perfect time to improve your web presence. Write some fun posts on Facebook or Instagram. Record some new instructional content for your YouTube channel. Contact some freelancers to enhance your website through better messaging, graphics, or SEO.
COVID-19 will likely alter user behaviour in many ways. Importantly, this is likely to drive people online even more. So, having a perfect web presence, filled with lots of fun, informative marketing content will make your business stand out amongst the competition.
Improve Advertising for Your Business
Along similar lines as the previous point, now is a perfect time to take a look at your advertising expenditures and see how to optimise them. For example, many businesses pay for Google Ads.
Given how the coronavirus is changing consumer behaviour, now is a great time to experiment with advertising and promotions to allow prospective clients to learn something new at home.
If you don't have adequate tracking (through Google Analytics or something similar), then this might also be a perfect time to implement that. Without conversion tracking, it's hard to know which of your marketing methods are succeeding and which are not.
Given that you can make all these changes online, these are improvements you can make from the comfort and safety of your home.
Create Online Curriculums and Materials
Clients will need online materials for as long as these lockdowns last, and potentially after governments lift them. It may be a significant amount of time before people feel as comfortable venturing outside as they did before the pandemic.
Therefore, taking the time to create proper online instruction curriculums will enable you to broaden your course offerings both during and after COVID-19. It will also give you material that you can potentially sell through other channels as well. For example, you might create a five video "intro to guitar" lesson series that you sell on your website as a standalone product for those who don't want to take private lessons, but do want to learn guitar from a qualified teacher. For other industries, such as dance, swim, gymnastics or other sports, you could create a series of technique-focused videos that cover some theory and visual instruction about the various strokes, dance moves or other sporting methods. These videos could be posted regularly on your social media platforms and your website, giving you lots of opportunities to interact with your clients online and keeping that online presence alive.
Training, for You and Your Employees
During busy times coaching, training, and otherwise mentoring students at your business location, it is easy to fall behind on your own learning. In addition, employees may not be continuously improving. Training is an essential part of every business. Without being up to date with the latest trends and ideas, companies can quickly lose market share.
Now that you and your employees are at home, this is a perfect time to do some training! Maybe you'd like to learn new techniques for teaching, or maybe one of your employees wants to know more about bookkeeping and help out in that regard. Training will benefit you, your employees, and the best part is that the vast majority of the time, you can do it remotely!
Consider exploring some training options for you and your employees and use this time at home to grow your knowledge!
Socialise and Empathise
During these unprecedented times, your employees will feel stressed. The world is rapidly changing, and people are wondering whether they will have jobs in the future. They're unsure about how the lockdowns will continue to play out worldwide.
As a business owner with a small to medium number of employees, you're likely to be a relatively close-knit group. In the office, you probably get along reasonably well and have a positive team culture. Once everyone remains at home, it can be easy to lose that positivity. Fear, doubt, and loneliness can creep into people’s minds and wreak havoc.
You can improve team morale, even during a pandemic like this. Reaching out to your employees, keeping them up to date on all your thoughts about reopening, listening, and empathising with them will go a long way in ensuring your team has positive morale. If you're willing to reach out to them and ensure they're okay during the middle of this crisis, then they can count on you support them when things start to normalise in the future.
Contact and communication can pay dividends for morale both now and in the future. Take the time to chat and improve this area of your business. That way, your employees feel safe, valued, and trusted.
Your Business Doesn't have to Stop
The lockdowns that are happening all across the world do not mean your business has to stop. Although your physical location might be closed, there's no reason why you cannot use this opportunity to improve other aspects of your enterprise. In particular, you can work on your web presence and advertising strategies. You can work on your online curriculum, and find training opportunities for everyone at your business. Finally, you can work on your company's morale by connecting and empathising with your employees.
There is a lot you can do to benefit your company greatly now, and once this virus has passed!