In developing a customer communications strategy during the coronavirus pandemic, the key challenge for most businesses is how to communicate that you are caring, empathetic and ready to help vs. appearing that you are greedy and wanting to take advantage of others in a very trying time. On the other hand, is it even worse to be totally silent and not let your customers know that you care and are there for them? What should you do?
Be a leader!
Instead of hunkering down and waiting out the Covid-19 pandemic, take a leadership role! Get out in front of the crisis and show your customers and business contacts that your business is not only responding but being proactive. Customers need to know that they can count on you in difficult times.
E-blasts can be a great tool to communicate what your business is doing (combined with social media platforms and website updates). They can reach your entire database instantaneously vs. myriad phone calls, which are likely unrealistic on an ongoing basis.
Concepts to consider:
- Add value. If you are distributing e-blasts, make certain they are informative and valuable. Content strategy is critical.
- Be sensitive to over-promoting your business. This is a difficult aspect of this entire situation. You don’t want to sound as if your business is taking advantage of the situation but at the same time, you realize patients have concerns. Avoid coming across as being tone-deaf to your customers’ situation, which may be severe financially. Careful messaging is essential.
- Show how you can help customers. While monetary considerations are secondary to health, they are crucial to the ongoing success of your customers and cannot be ignored. Focus specifically on how your business can resolve customers’ concerns.
- Website resource center: If your business offers services that are directly related to Covid-19, develop a web page as a type of “Covid-19 Resource Center” to provide specific information that is useful to those who need such help. Make it easy for users to quickly find the information they need.
- Show how you are taking care of your employees. Whether your employees are the day-to-day face of your business with customers or working in the background, customers appreciate knowing that you’re taking care of your own in their time of need.
- Help others. If you are helping the community, demonstrate how others can pitch in. Whether it is helping other local businesses that are suffering, assisting non-profits, or providing for needy citizens, everyone can help in some way – even from your home office.
- Explain how you are accessible. You’ve likely told customers how to contact you but repeat the information in follow-up correspondence (i.e., they shouldn’t have to search for your cell phone or alternative email address).
Questions? We are here to support you and keep your business running. Feel free to contact Exemplar Digital Marketing to help you.