We hosted our 2nd Virtual Town Hall this week and wanted to share the educational tips and information discussed.
You can watch the full video on our Facebook page.
Thank you to our panel members:
Jenny Miller (KCSourceLink)
Jill Hathaway (SBDC)
Hayley Besheer Santell (Gunter Pest & Madi Apparel)
Sarah Koci Scheilz (Inspiration-Driven Communications)
Emilie Jackson (Emilie’s French Teas)
Kathryn Snellen (KES Studio)
Kate Nielson (On Tap) – Moderator
Pivoting your business to offer new services
Now is the time to look at all opportunities you have to offer new services, products, or offers. From offering home delivery or curbside pick-up options to look at the offerings your customers need now and in the future. Service-based businesses can also pivot by creating packages or kits that will provide an educational experience at the price point. Your sales strategy is a great place to start.
Launching online sales:
A few examples of online sales include offering webinars, membership sites, online or social media communities, courses, etc.
Now is a great time to look at what educational information your business offers and to see how you can provide that through virtual consulting, coaching, or other online packages. There are so many ways to offer consultations and to sell virtually with platforms like Zoom, Go2Webinar, live streaming on social media, and more.
Before you start selling new offerings online, it’s important to make sure you have the right content that your audience truly wants and needs and system set-up. If you have a robust email list, you can drip information that way. If you have an engaged social media following, you can start to share teasers on your channels.
You can learn more resources and tips here:
Engagement + Social Media:
Now is the time to engage with your audience. It does not matter how many followers you have, but how engaged they are with you. Think about the different ways you can educate, inspire, or entertain your audience. Look at what information you offer within your business that you can share to provide value to your audience. Also, collaboration is key! If you work with other vendors or community leaders, look at ways you can team up to cross-promote and grow your engagement.
– Who are the partners/brands you can partner with for a giveaway or campaign?
– What does my audience need from me right now?
– How are you giving back and helping others?
– How does my brand tone sound? Does that need to change?
Overall, your goal should be to establish your company as an expert and to share valuable information on your social media.
– Be authentic, show behind-the-scenes of your business to create an emotional connection
– Share valuable information that serves a purpose
– Make sure you include a CTA (link in bio, direct to your DM’s, etc.)
Creating an online store for your business:
Now is a great time to consider revamping or launching your business website! Your website doesn’t have to have all the bells and whistles, but it does need to be easy-to-use for the consumer both on desktop and mobile. If you cannot enlist a professional developer, there are many easy platforms you can try like Wix, Shopify, or Squarespace. These are user-friendly website templates that allow you to easily drag-and-drop your business information and content into the site.
A few things to keep in mind when selecting your platforms:
Wix also has a membership community option
Shopify has more options for product/online sales
A few tips to make your website drive sales:
– Connect your online shop to your social media for direct sales via both Facebook and Instagram
– Make sure the links to your shop are easy to find in your social media profiles
– Consider adding an online gift card option: SquareUp is offering free options or you check with your website provider
– If you already are partnered with online services for your business, get in touch with them or ask for free trials
– Create a Freemium or lead magnet that lives on your website to serve as a prerequisite to take the next step (helps to disqualify and qualify your ideal customer)
PR/Media for your business
If your business has a unique story to tell, now is the time to look at how you can connect with media to help you share that message.
HARO (Help A Reporter Out) is a great (free) email subscription you can sign-up for to gain access to story leads that your business could be a fit for.
For local coverage, you can also reach out to local news stations through the following steps:
– Search the news outlet website or social media for their “News Desk” or general email – this is a great contact to send info to
– Check LinkedIn or social media to get in touch with specific reporters or media contacts
– Craft your Pitch: make sure your pitch is clear, consise and shares a unique news-worthy angle (are you giving back to the community, launching a unique product or service, supporting your staff, etc.)
Now is the time to think about what is and what is not working for your business in regards to sales and marketing. You will want to come up with solutions that are not only supporting you during the time of COVID-19, but can be longlasting revenue-generating opportunities.
How do you maintain what you create moving forward?
What does this mean for me in the future?