Lockdown is hard, right! Especially for businesses who have had to 100% close the doors of their shops or lost a large part of their income. So, what can you do to keep your customers and audience engaged during lockdown? How can you keep them warm, or keep them purchasing online while they’re not allowed to visit you in person?
Here’s 10 things you could be doing to make sure your customers keep in touch, because even if they’re not purchasing right now, you can still remind them of your value, your products and services, and your special qualities.
- A sneak peek behind the scenes
We’re all a little bit nosey – me included, so share what are you doing behind the scenes in your business. Are you connecting with your team? Are you creating new products and services? Whatever you are doing – taking some pictures, videos, or timelapses of you working in lockdown is a great way of giving your audience an insight into your business. This type of content is great for social media.
- Share your top tips
What’s your expertise? What do you do every day that can help people? If you’re a beauty business, share some tips on applying make-up on YouTube or a Facebook LIVE. If you’re a restaurant, could you show a menu item and how to cook it, so people can do this at home? Or if you’re in finance – could you write an article and give people some advice on saving, raising money or investments? Think about your knowledge and expertise and what you could give back. Doing one piece of content a week could go a long way to engaging your customers. Then, they’ll keep you front of mind for when you open back up.
- Build your social media audience
In business you’re usually focused on what you do every day and don’t have time for social media, so in lockdown you might have the time to login to your Instagram and share a photo, or check out your Facebook business News feed, or connect with other business people on LinkedIn. Use your business social accounts to like other people’s posts, comment or follow other accounts and start growing your social media.
- Connect on email marketing
Do you have an email marketing strategy? How often do you connect with clients on email? If you have great content, then use this in your email marketing to keep them connected with your business. Send a blog, create a special offer, of share your behind-the-scenes content in your email marketing. If you don’t have a database, then look through all your previous contacts and create a list so you can start to connect with your people and start your sales funnel.
- Write a blog
Giving advice in a blog can really increase the traffic to your website. The more regular you add content to your website, the more you will increase your traffic from search engines. A blog can really help people learn more about you and your business. It can be short and snappy of only 300 words or something more involved like an article, depending on what topic you are covering or what you have to share.
- Re-work your website
Take the time to check your website and update your content in lockdown. Even small changes on your website like adding new pictures and updating copy can alert Google that you’re live and can get you more traffic. Refreshing website content shows your audience that you are constantly changing. It’s also a great idea to regularly check all the links are working.
- Get creative – give your audience some fun stuff to do
I’ve seen some fantastic examples of businesses being creative in lockdown and engaging their audiences with challenges and special offers. Could you start a book club, offer a free gift with a purchase, share fun or educational things to do with kids in lockdown? Think how you can put a smile on the face of your customers. Competitions and incentives are another great way to keep people engaged and attract a new audience. Create a photo competition online and ask people to take photos with your product. Or ask as questions on your socials and whoever gives the best answer you could reward. Like for me this might be – what’s your best marketing hack? This gives me great new ideas and content, but also allows me to interact with my future customers.
- Keep your team engaged
If you’re staff are happy, informed and engaged then your customers will be too. If you’re having regular catch-ups on ZOOM with your team or doing team building together online then share this with your audience. Or you might want to profile your team members, or let them show a special talent they have via a video!
- Contribute and reach out to your media
Have you thought about reaching out to your local media to see if they are looking for people to comment on hot topics or write articles? Media are looking for original content all the time so if you have some news, or a great story about your business and how you’re surviving lockdown then tell people about it. Get in touch with your local media’s Editor and ask if they are looking for stories or contribution on topics related to your business. You can search them up on LinkedIn or Twitter to find their contact details.
- Tap into other local businesses
Who else is doing it tough in your area or what other businesses are on the same strip or in the same precinct as you? Could you work together on a package or create a co-campaign? Reaching out to your fellow local businesses could lead to some fantastic relationships for the future. You never know what might come of it, even if it’s a new business friend and some support in lockdown.
- Run a webinar or event
I know it’s scary, but this might be a great time to host a virtual event, webinar or Facebook LIVE. Challenge yourself by presenting advice or content about your key business topic. Or host an online coffee catch-up and invite your customers to attend. There’s so many free tools available now from Humanitix, Zoom, Eventbrite, Facebook and more to use to get you started.
- Join a local community organisation
I’m a very proud committee member of the Hornsby Chamber of Commerce, and I’ve found it so comforting attending their monthly virtual catch-ups, meeting likeminded businesses online, as well as learning how they can help promote my business. See if there’s any local community organisations in your area.
I’m in lockdown too, so I’d love to hear if you get the chance to implement some of these marketing tactics! Make sure you tag me on Facebook @leodismarketing, on Instagram @leodismarketing and connect with me on LinkedIn.