For UK business owners, now that lockdown is (largely) over, the hard work can really begin.
For example, how can you get your sales and your profitability back to where it needs to be?
I know what it’s like to rebuild your life during a recession, as my life came crashing down when I was made redundant from Woolworths in 2008. During the following economic depression, I built my ideal life by getting help and support, and as a Certified Coach with the Entrepreneurs Circle, am now in a great place to help others do the same.
In the Circle, we believe the ‘Big Six’ things that every business owner needs to focus on over the next few months to get back to where they
want to be, are:
1. Remember that this is only a recession for some.
This is vitally important!
The numbers that the media talk about are high-level, macro numbers which apply to the economy as a whole, but they doesn’t reflect what’s happening with individuals.
The reality is, there are lots of people (and businesses) who right now are sat on more disposable cash than they’ve ever had in their lives!
Sure, there are also people and businesses who are struggling like never before, but the important point to lock onto, is that there is money out there, and there are people willing to spend it.
This isn’t a downturn where everyone’s been affected equally. So if you can think creatively, and get in front of the right people, then growing your sales back up to, and above, where they were before lockdown, is a very achievable objective for many.
2. Your success in the second half of 2020 will be 95% determined by you, and 5% by the outside world, so our second point is that it’s crucial for business owners to recognise their responsibilities as soon as possible.
It’s what YOU think and what YOU do that will make all the difference to your sales and profits!
When bad things happen to them, most people will mope, and feel sorry for themselves.
But successful entrepreneurs aren’t like that; their approach will be, ‘Ok, here’s another problem. Let’s deal with it.’
It’s absolutely critical that you recognise what happens to your business over the next six months is entirely down to you. It’s all your fault.
So if you have a poor frame of mind, you’re in big trouble. It won’t be possible to flourish in the weeks and months ahead if your mind isn’t in the right place, and having a healthy mindset will help you to have a healthy business.
3. Third on our list, is recognising that the more you get done over the next few weeks, the more profit you’ll make.
Getting things done is by far the best way to predict your future.
For example, putting aside 90 minutes each day to focus on your marketing, would be the smartest thing any ambitious entrepreneur could do right now.
You can spend the rest of the day getting immersed in the nitty-gritty of your business, such as delivering for your customers, looking after your staff, planning for the future, and doing all the other things you need to deal with, as long as you’ve got those 90 minutes set aside to focus on marketing your business.
4. This brings us on nicely to the fourth of the Big Six, which is, ‘be aggressive with your marketing’.
Right now, marketing is NOT a non-essential spend.
If people don’t know about you, what you do, and why they should choose you, then they aren’t ringing you up, coming to see you, or visiting your website. And that’s bad for business.
Right now, across almost all platforms, it’s cheaper than normal to advertise.
For example, the cost of Facebook and Google ads plummeted during lockdown, and it’s not too late for you to benefit. But you have to take action! And that’s why you need those 90 minutes per day to make sure you’re promoting yourself in the right ways.
5. Fifth on our list, is the importance of video.
Video is the new normal; it’s just so easy to do now. All you need is your mobile phone, and your personality.
So many of us feel inhibited on video, but the price we pay for keeping ourselves and our businesses hidden, is massive in terms of the sales and profits we lose.
Facebook Live is a brilliant way to strengthen relationships and create awareness of what you do, while if your website hasn’t got a video on its homepage of you talking about what you do, and how you help people, then you’re almost certainly missing out on sales.
In simple terms, business owners will soon have two choices with regards to video; they can reluctantly embrace it, or they can enthusiastically embrace it.
You don’t have to be a natural on camera – that really doesn’t matter. What people want is honesty, sincerity, and authenticity.
And that can come across in spades when you are true to yourself on video.
6. Finally, the best way to kickstart your own liberation from lockdown, is to focus on all those unconverted leads that have sat around for the past few months.
Find all the people who enquired in January, February, during lockdown, or even at the back-end of last year. Then send them what we call ‘the three line email’.
Hi [their name], are you still looking for a (whatever it is that you do)?
If so, I’d love to help…
There’s nothing more to it than that.
It’s not salesy. It’s not pushy. But these 3 simple lines generate really good responses!
You could send it out to people this afternoon, and within a matter of hours you’ll have some of them wanting to talk to you.
Of course, whether you email people or not is up to you.
But then, that’s true for almost everything in life, and it’s certainly the case for planning your recovery from lockdown.
So accept responsibility, get stuff done, and never forget that what happens next will be all your fault.