As the coronavirus ravages stock markets and the economy, your company needs to act.
Almost every company has been adversely impacted by the virus. I spoke with over a dozen CEOs of mid-sized companies last week — companies ranging from $5 million to $50 million in revenue. In all but two cases, they are forecasting sales to fall by 30-50% this quarter.
Whole sections of their business have been paralyzed. And it’s not just retail or restaurants, it’s all sectors — from manufacturing to professional services to e-commerce. The drop in revenue is due to a variety of factors:
- Supply chain disruptions
- Business closures
- Employee disruptions
- Contingency planning
- Lost customers and cancelled orders
- Lost sectors or markets
Some of the market disruption is temporary. The very first, and potentially largest, impediment to sales has been psychological.
If you look at Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, all of us were flung down his triangle. We were collectively sent into a state of fear, uncertainty and shock.
When your customers are in a state of fear, it’s hard for them to act. It’s hard for them to even think straight. But that fear is easing up.
I anticipate April will transition to a state of “normalcy.” People will get used to social distancing and we will adapt to our new normal.
The situation is fluid, and it will be for at least a year. Until there’s a vaccine or the disease works its way through the population, we will be pushed in and out of a state of crisis with social distancing, lockdowns, and disruptions.
You cannot expect business to return to normal in 2020. This leads us to real challenging questions:
- How do you recover lost revenue and lost sales opportunities taken by the impact of COVID-19?
- How do you find new markets or customers when the world is turned upside down?
- How do you use this crisis to grow your business and come out stronger?
These aren’t easy questions, because you can misstep. Your brand won’t survive the coronavirus if it’s perceived as opportunistic and icky. But it will thrive if it is perceived as truly helpful.
If this intrigues you, I’m hosting a free webinar on Wednesday, April 8. I hope you can join me. You can reserve a spot here.
The way to rebuild your sales, and even grow your brand, through this crisis is strategic. Ask your team three questions:
- Who needs our company and its expertise the most right now?
- What products or services can we deliver to solve real problems that are valued?
- How can we proactively sell and deliver our services to the people with the most need?
The interesting and amazing part of the coronavirus is it is creating opportunities. The world needs your company more than ever before, but that requires looking ahead and even reframing your value proposition.
Winston Churchill said, “Never waste a good crisis.” New customer needs are appearing, which is the opportunity for innovation. And many of the needs will stay. Look for new needs to convert into new markets and services as we get through to the other side of the crisis.
What do you want your business and brand to look like at the end of the crisis?
The companies that act first and adapt fastest can create a competitive advantage. You can redefine your industry. You can redefine your company’s brand and the way it’s perceived. And you probably won’t see another opportunity like this again.
It’s your choice. You can hunker down, or you can rise up and fight.
Let’s dig into this idea more on Wednesday, April 8 at 12pm EST / 9am PST. Register here. I will show you how to find new customers and sources of revenue.
We’re here. Let’s talk!
Do you need a strategy to overcome the coronavirus? Let’s talk. Call me directly at 416.479.4403, or check out our Crisis Marketing services. I work with business owners and their teams to rapidly shift their business strategies, value propositions, and marketing strategies to develop new customers and sources of revenue.