Companies that change may survive, but companies that transform thrive. Change brings incremental or small-scale adaptations, while transformation brings great improvements that ripple through the future of an organization. – Nick Candito, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer at Progressly.
With uncertainty lurking around, we find ourselves holding on tightly to things that remain constant, and we can turn to for comfort. But can we use this same strategy for our businesses? Absolutely not!
While many businesses failed to cope up, many industries such as the pharmaceutical industry, the entertainment industry have logged in one of their best years yet. However, not all of us can be dealt the winning hand, so what do we do then? How did Elon Musk become the wealthiest person in the world during a pandemic? It all comes down to strategic decisions and perseverance.
We have listed down a few steps to help build a game-changing strategy:
1.Make the shift online
COVID-19 has shown us the importance of having an online presence. Many businesses have shut down during the lockdown as they did not have an online presence and could not cater to their customer’s needs. Especially with the pandemic, several online brands have even taken to giving free deliveries to help their customers. We recommend using this time to set up an online store, identify errors in the online processes, and rectify it.
Cordoce, the fashion brand, took the downtime that the lockdown offered to accelerate their online retail site’s digital transformation to cater to digital shoppers. Given they had already built this e-commerce infrastructure, Cordoce could ramp up their online presence with their teams working remotely and efficiently.
2. Use the time to make improvements.
Take this time to see what features of the company’s product and processes can be improved and improvised for the better. Conduct market research and send out surveys to customers asking them their opinion on what they feel would enhance the brand and their user experience.
PepsiCo realized that many of their products were nearing the expiry date during the lockdown. The brand started creating bundles of consumers’ favourite brands approaching their shelf expiry dates. To make it easier for their consumers, they delivered it directly to their homes. They dealt with two problems with one strategy; they dealt with waste reduction, and their consumers were able to sample a wide range of PepsiCo products at a discounted rate.
3. Focus on the company’s strengths
During these uncertain times, concentrate on the company’s advantages. Ask important questions. Think about what would attract customers to the product? What would draw them in as soon as the lockdown is over? Airbnb devised a brilliant strategy to do just that.
We are well aware that the travel and tourism sector has been flailing due to the lockdown restrictions. Brands revised their marketing strategies to inspire customers. Airbnb has put up images of its breathtaking spaces, free for download and use. In cognizance of the increased use of at-home devices, this will lead to more engagement and brand awareness when travel resumes to normal.
4. Reassure customers
Businesses always revolve around customers. Use creative advertising and build strategies that show the customers that they always come first, even during a pandemic.
Aldermore Bank has seized this opportunity. While we know that many people are struggling to pay off their loans and mortgages, this bank took a few simple steps to make it easier for their customers. They implemented an efficient process for mortgage repayment holidays with access to funds for business clients and created a robust digital banking experience. They have received overwhelmingly positive feedback on review sites like Trustpilot from customers.
The pandemic forced businesses to adapt to transformative changes that would ordinarily take years to implement. COVID-19 shows us that companies can be highly agile when needed. We need to stick with the principle of agility to keep our business growing and thriving. Change is constant, and we need to start using it to our advantage.