The Covid-19 pandemic has forced businesses to maintain and build relationships with consumers from a distance. With “the new normal”, businesses are now facing a challenge of generating sales during a period of extreme economic hardship while keeping the threats to life and livelihood that have altered consumer priorities and preferences in mind.
Businesses that cannot supply the demand of their stakeholders are struggling, some might even be closing their doors, while some are learning how to adapt and pushing past this crisis. The rapidly spreading of businesses shutting down has proven the advantage of digital technology and readiness also shown how software platforms enable work to be done remotely. Whether for telecommuting, product fulfillment, or service delivery, modern technology systems have helped optimized operations in the face of limited person-to-person contact to comply with social distancing.
Here are four ways to manage your customer relationships during and post a crisis like the COVID-19 pandemic:
- Help Your Customers by Guiding Them Through the Changes: Stay ahead of the information curve. Set up robust media monitoring systems to stay educated on the outbreak. Offer your customers online learning opportunities. To keep your customer relationships strong during COVID-19, provide your customers with intelligence, guidance, and direction that makes your value delivery a seamless interaction. Stay on top of and ahead of all shifts, and provide regular updates on closings, delays, product changes, and promotions to keep your clientele informed and appeased. Learn what your audience needs and help them discover how your service will best help in these trying times.
- Run webinars
- Use media monitoring software
- Empathize and Communicate Like a Human: Provide employees with messaging to share with customers and partners. Be truthful about what you don’t know and avoid statements that may prove to be false in the coming weeks, whatever you say to your customers right now has to come from an honest place while still respecting their boundaries. Be mindful of how your service affects your clients, and how COVID-19 is affecting their lives and their own business.
- Create a landing page dedicated to your clients during these trying times with FAQ’s, You can easily take a news plugin for this function.
- I recommend enabling external comment functionality for improved feedback from customers.
- Allow your customer service and sales teams to offer reduced prices or increased services during this time to customers.
- Keep What Works But Adapt Quickly: Some companies may have advanced their digitalization capabilities in the past few years. These companies are likely experiencing, only a moderate impact due to the global coronavirus pandemic. Shifting your operations to remote work via online conferencing and communication tools like Zoom and Slack, most projects can continue.
During the disruption, operational challenges need solutions, cash management and liquidity need to be adjusted for the changes in demand. Communications and leadership must also be expanded into the digital space. If your company was not online before, it’s likely online now. In a fast-paced marketplace, shopping for new technology solutions may help some companies. Most companies’ issues resulting from the disruption due to worldwide efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19 will need quick fixes and solutions, but for some, it might be the beginning of new problems.
- Leverage Technology to Generate Value for Your Customers: In collaboration with marketing automation tools, you need to ensure they are integrated with channels where data can be pulled from. Once you have your data, it needs to be analyzed and segmented to an individual level and then utilized for personalized customer communication via marketing automation. Every part of this process should be talking to all the other parts for maximum efficiency, information, and results. Depending on your business your data collection channels can be CRM, Website, Email marketing platform, Mobile app, Event management tool, Social media, Online Store, or an ERP system.
During the pandemic having accurate data is key, it helps in making decisions based on your business’s day to day operations. Your goal as a business leader during this time should be to increase customer engagement and position yourself as a reliable, value-add partner who goes above and beyond during difficult times.
With an app like Commercient SYNCyou can grow your business from anywhere in the world using cloud software, automate sales, and become a fully digital business. Commercient’s SYNC’s application makes it possible to see your ERP data in your CRM and vice-versa since it can be used on any device. In addition to this, you will need a way to ensure that you have access to accurate, complete, and up to date data in your ERP and CRM.
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Naudine is a strong media and communication professional with a demonstrated history of working in the marketing and advertising industry. Skilled in SEO, PPC, SEM, Social media marketing, content creation, and web development. She completed a diploma focused on Systems development and Digital marketing with Certifications in Adwords, Analytics, Social Media, Online Marketing, etc.