Before we dive into this How To Guide, I know that none of you are doing nothing. I have worked my way through the Member’s Club and it appears not one of us & our businesses are unaffected in some way.
We are all in this together.
All of us do have a little more time however. Whether your business is closed or you’re simply working less and from home, perhaps it’s time to think about what we can do. Tiny steps, shuffling forwards, looking up to the sky or just a few more deep breaths.
This How To Guide is not to preach. It’s not a list of ‘should dos’. It’s not a judgement if you’re not ready yet. It’s simply here for days when you’re stuck, lost, feel short on ideas.
In adversity, we learn new things. During dark times, we find new light. Here are a few ideas about what you can do and that might support you and your business to a new, positive future.
- List all the products (or product types) and services you sell or deliver. Next to each item, add two more columns. One column is for success and one column is for joy. Which of those product types and services are your best sellers. Which of them give you joy to sell or deliver. This list can be put up in your office or on the fridge for your to digest and ponder. Can it start to help you evolve your business for the future? Are your best sellers bringing you joy? Could you do more of what makes you happy?
- Take a moment to write down all the things you originally dreamt of doing before you started your business. Observe whether your business has moved away from those original dreams. Ask yourself if your business might benefit from fulfilling some of those dreams. What work is there left to do?
- Listen to something new. Reduce your news intake. Journalists are paid to give us factual information which is useful. They are also paid to give us analysis which isn’t. Try Podcasts that will inspire, music to sooth or energise, serials to entertain. I like TED Interviews, The Do Lectures, How to Fail, Unlocking Us by Brene Brown, Fortunately by Fi & Jane & You’re Dead to Me (on BBC Sounds only).
- Read something completely new. How many of us have a pile of books that we’ve not got round to or heard about an inspiring read that we’ve forgotten? Choose a topic you’re passionate about – gardening, the environment, self care, psychology, history, business and let those new ideas in.
- Find new ways to communicate with your audience & customer base. Even if you’re not trading, they are still there & want to hear from you. Your audience want to be inspired, entertained, learn something new, feel connected, be able to help, offer support & have conversation. List all the ways you could do that. Can you share ‘behind the scenes’ or a regular diary of life, recipes, your reading list etc etc. Get really creative.
- List all the ways you can communicate with them – blogs, emails, videos, content, social media, webinars, private groups and more. What would your audience most like do you think? Maybe now is the time to commit to one new activity and do it well.
- Start a blog or video diary & share on social media consistently.
- Share your new content by email. An effective email strategy is key to great communication without algorithms. Gather emails, send out regular updates, take your audience on your journey, be front of mind when the world starts to right itself.
- Complete a website audit. All our websites can be better. How does it look on a mobile, is it obvious from all pages what you want them to do? Can your customers book or buy without your help? Are your images beautiful & inspiring? Do you have an up to date video? Does the website load in less than 3 seconds? Now is the time to polish, upgrade and sharpen.
- Do some dreaming. Get a big piece of paper with coloured pens and start to ‘map out’ or draw how you want your business to be. Please ignore your brain reminding you that this won’t happen or that you are being fanciful. This is a creative process that helps you lay the foundations for a new future, even if you have to start again. Include the things that bring you joy, your dream customers, your location & how it will feel. KEEP the map….