This was prompted by a post that Daniel Priestley put into his Oversubscribed Facebook group earlier on this week, but I wanted to share a few ideas on how some of my clients, and indeed myself, have reset and reinvented their businesses in order to turn the tide at this difficult time.
Susie runs a Princess Party business...
And has had everything cancelled, for obvious reasons, so we did an initial reset to move her from panic to a more calm place.
Her reinvention - To create a daily online show that children can sit and watch from home, sold on a subscription basis (weekly and monthly). Also she's offering bedtime story reading remotely, and 15/30 minute 1-to-1 Princess Video Calls.
The result - Within 24 hours, she's already had more than a dozen bookings all paid in advance.
James runs a tricycle hire business for events...
(think sweet stalls, crepery, fish'n'chips) etc. His bookings have also dried up and he's been left with a whole heap of stock.
The reinvention - I suggested for a bit of good will, why doesn't he canvas his local area and use up some of that stock giving away sweets and beer (this is how his business started, selling sweets on from a bike in his local village as a child!)
The result - He's already taken deposits (£750 each) for 2 bookings in the Autumn as a result.
Karen runs a dog training and behaviour business...
Clients have been trying to cancel because they don't want her coming to their home. Despite the training work happening outdoors.
The reinvention - she adapted her consultation process (think Quiz, Diagnostic and Product for Prospect) so that it is now available as an online consultation.
Some clients were undoubtedly wary, so I encouraged her to offer a money back guarantee and/or rebook when things have settled down.
The result - She's delivered five now (£850 each) and not had any hint of her clients asking for refunds.
Terry runs a restaurant...
Two weeks ago footfall in his restaurant and sales dropped by 40%, and are now pretty much non-existent.
The reinvention - Terry now runs a takeaway business! He set up an account with Just East and was trading online within 48 hours with a core offering of his 10 most popular dishes.
His landlord has also been super generous and offered a 3 month payment break.
The result - Sales aren't quite back up where they were before and there were some logistical issues to get around, but with the rent break for three months profits are pretty much back to where they were before. When things settle down and bookings in the restaurant get back to normal his turnover will likely double as he's keen to continue doing takeaway.
And finally Robin (that's me)...
Within a week I'd had two potential 1-to-1 business coaching clients cancel (they were about to sign contracts) and a paid speaking gig, worth about £13,000 revenue in total.
Now I'm not one for panicking but this created a hole which needed to be plugged.
The reinvention - I normally arrange a quarterly group meetup with my clients, but for obvious reasons this needed to be taken online and my clients were up for sitting through a day's content via an online summit.
Some of them asked whether their friends/colleagues could join (they'd be happy to pay) so I said yes, and we've since opened it up to guests.
The result - I'm hoping that we can get 30-50 guests along to the summit, paying a small admission fee. The content will be recorded and go into a portal. It won't replace the lost income but it will certainly go A LONG WAY towards alleviating the short term cashflow issues.
Please share you Reinvention Story in the COMMENTS below...
I'm sure everyone would love to hear your reinvention story, so please do drop it into the COMMENTS below, and let's turn these businesses around.
Other VERY Important Resources You Can Use...
There's a great resource on the GOV website now around support for businesses in the UK who are experiencing tough time which I would encourage everyone to keep an eye on:
I am encouraging all of my clients to take advantage of these resources, they should not be in fear of taking out government backed finance if it is available and will see them and their businesses through the next few months.
Here are a few practical things you can do:
- Update your accounts, run through your overheads and see what costs you can potentially cut or save altogether.
- Encourage staff to come up with create ways to save money or make more money. I've heard of one company they asked this of their staff and said they weren't going to do any cutbacks. ALL of the staff unanimously and VOLUNTARILY voted to take a 20% reduction in salary for 3 months.
- Speak to HMRC about deferring tax payments if they are falling due within the next 3-6 months.
- Ask your landlord for a payment break or reduction for 3 months, alongside approaching your mortgage company and asking for a mortgage holiday.
- Send some information to clients and ask them that they find creative ways to support you through these tough times. You may find they are more loyal than you think. A German football club's fans bought tickets to a "Ghost Match" after all their matches were cancelled which raised over EUR500,000 for the club.
- If you are able to move your services online, where there is a will there's a way. At least try it out. I've seen some people talk themselves out of it before they've even given it a go. Don't let tech or a fear of video be the downfall of your business. EVERYONE is having to adapt right now.
Many have suffered in the belief that this is terminal for their business, however, it's not binary, and if they/you believe in your business then taking out a loan to prop things up in the short term should be an easy decision.
Also, we've already taken advantage of the mortgage break offer available for 3 months. My wife's pride got in the way a bit, but again, our joint finances have taken a hit, these are extraordinary times and I want to secure my household finances as well as the business finances.
Playing to Lose versus Playing to Win
As Daniel has said there will be some great opportunities available to everyone out there. But, and this is my advice now, you will not see those opportunities if your mindset is all about worry, focussed on the news, and "playing not to lose"!
You must push that to one side, and focus on "playing to win" as well as playing not to lose during the same game.
If you find yourself making decisions on your current circumstances it will sabotage your thinking further and you'll make poor decisions which will compound the issues your business is experiencing.
My advice, make decisions based on the future vision you have for you and your business.
Looking back, 12 months from now, what did you do now to turn your business into a roaring success?
#covid19 #coronavirus #business
Image by StartupStockPhotos from Pixabay