At the beginning of 2020, many businesses entered the year with firm plans and optimistic outlooks. However, all of that evaporated and changed by mid-March as the focus turned from thriving to surviving. We are now in the final month of this turbulent year. The future still seems so uncertain and the end of the pandemic still feels a long way off, but despite that, there is still a lot businesses can do to prepare for success in the new year. In this article we will discuss what will 2021 bring and all the steps we can take to prepare and be ready.
- Review what you learned in 2020
The first step to take is to begin gathering hints about how the world will operate moving forward. It’s important to review what you have learnt in 2020. Think about what you did this year to maneuver through the hazards that came your way. Analyze what worked, what didn’t and what you did differently. Use what you’ve learnt to get your ducks in order to manage and prepare your business in a manner that meets both your and your customers needs. Once you’ve done that, look into what the future may hold and how you would handle whatever comes up.
2. Talk to your best customers and employees
Find out what they want and need and how they can anticipate their lives. Learn how your product or service will fit into the flow. Since the pandemic, a new norm of virtual visits over physical interaction has grown. However, some people still prefer to head down to an actual store and feel/look/try the product first before making a purchase. If this is still not available for your business, try speaking to your customers or holding a survey to find out what you can improve on. Apart from speaking to your customers, it’s important to speak to your valuable employees as well. They were in the front line when the pandemic happened and many had to come up with quick solutions and adaptations for the company to survive and continue growing. These employees would be able to let you know where there were issues and how you as a company can work together to come up with a solution moving forward into the new year.
3. Look at what your competitors are doing
You’ll notice that some businesses thrived during the pandemic while others were barely surviving. Review how your competitors are reaching customers and clients today. At the same time, analyse on where their next steps might be. By doing this, you can take inspiration from their strategies and incorporate it into your own.
4. Rethink how to use your marketing dollar
In-person events, such as speaking engagements, trade shows, or conferences where you could network with potential customers were put on hold because of the pandemic. They might not return all that soon in 2021, so until time, it is important to explore other options for getting the best use out of the budget that would have been used for these events. Some alternative marketing ideas you could incorporate would be zoom calls or webinars instead.
The pandemic changed the way we work now. Businesses with cloud and agility are able to respond with digital solutions. If this year has shown us anything, it has shown us that life can be very unpredictable and its important to adapt and make changes where necessary.