During uncertain times, whether it’s temporarily shutting down a business, coping with regulation changes or dealing with other uncertain effects on your business from a recession or pandemic, it’s important to stay in communication with clients. There are some guidelines to this client communication that you should always follow, regardless of the circumstance or future position your business will be in.This advice can be used internally with staff as well.
1. Empathy and compassion are necessary, but never lose authority as an expert in your niche.
When things change, whether it’s a recession or even a pandemic, it’s important to not stray too far from your niche. Although you are encouraged to have empathy and compassion, you should not use uncertain times as an excuse to go off track with your client communications. You’re an expert in dog training or fashion, not finances or health, so don’t stop sharing your niche’s content.
2. Keep customers engaged.
People are consuming more content than ever. They have more time on their hands, which gives you more of an opportunity to stay relevant. Keep them engaged by continuing to share high quality, relevant content.
3. Don’t go quiet.
The last thing clients need is for you to go quiet. That lack of communication and blatant uncertainty can cause fear. Your clients need to know what’s changing with your business, even if you are unsure as to what’s next. If you’re considering closing your business, don’t just go quiet. Keep communicating as normal until a decision has been made. And if you’re carrying on like normal, be sure that your clients know that!
4. Change your offering to fit the situation.
If things are changing around you, consider how you can pivot your offering to fit the situation. Then, communicate with your clients and staff about that change! It’s all about providing creative solutions.
5. Present your authentic self in communications.
Don’t fade into the background. Be upfront and transparent, and most importantly, be authentic. Your clients want to see how you’re managing the changes, but also see the confidence and consistency in your communication.
6. There is nothing wrong with attracting new business.
In the midst of societal disheaval, many businesses suddenly become afraid of attracting new business. Is it okay to sell when people are losing their jobs? Isn’t it wrong to advertise my business when there’s a recession? This is a touchy subject and if these situations are occuring, you certainly should be aware of them, and not ignorant in your marketing messages. However, just because things are changing doesn’t mean you can’t keep your business going. That sense of normalcy is what many are looking for in uncertain times. Moreover, your services could be exactly what another small business needs before they close down and fire employees of their own.
7. Stay relevant and upbeat in client communications.
If things are scary and overwhelming, don’t be another source of frustration for clients. Stay relevant and upbeat. Be a knowledgeable source of information that says, “This is scary, but here’s what we’re going to do about it.”
If you follow this client communication guide, you’ll be able to use this time for connection. Addressing fears and carrying forward with your business can create long-lasting relationships, now more than ever.