Being productive despite COVID-19 shutdowns
Sanity check, guys, how are we doing? We aren’t quite sure what we’re feeling, but it is solidly in the calm, acceptance, fear, anxious, grateful, curious, pent-up zone. Hopefully, you’re reading this from the safety of your home (or home office).
“No one really knows how many people will be infected (or will pass away sadly), but it has caused the global stock markets to crash, which means as a business (or even a marketer), you will be affected.” – Neil Patel
You might have noticed from our recent blog post, that our niche is tourism, hospitality and events-based marketing. And, we’ve been devastated seeing the impact the virus-perpetrated shutdowns have on our awesome clients.
Traffic is down across the board; conversions with it. Regardless of how long this shelter-in-place lasts, businesses are going to continue to struggle to make up these historic losses in revenue.
While we are nervous about the long-lasting effects of this, we are also taking comfort in the few things that we can control. And that is responding mindfully. We are adjusting; diving into our strategic side and tapping into our flexibility. Though the negative ramifications of this new normal are significant, there is a silver lining of forced downtime.
Silver lining: the rare opportunity to pause, reprioritize and adjust productivity to maximize future outputs
Small businesses are frequently pushing all-ahead full. Small teams wearing hats of every color are diligently getting narwhals in Asana, pivoting between building strategy and executing it, managing employees and accounts, drumming up new business, running operations – the whole gamut. But there is only so much time in the day. Sometimes (a lot of the times) the hierarchy of business needs seem to keep some internal tasks on the back burner perpetually. A personal example: our clients are our number one priority and thus our internal marketing plans often take a back seat. For businesses who experience similar rubs, this unprecedented time offers a massive shift in productivity towards future potential. Here are a few ways to make this time work for you.
Audit your OWN roadmap
We’ve all got key metrics we analyze on a consistent basis – usually monthly, quarterly and/or annually. But now you have the gift of time to really dive into ALL the numbers and minutiae that get lost in standard evaluations. Things you can look at include:
- What are some ways that you can improve different aspects of your company? Your products and/or services?
- What in your roadmap is no longer working? What is working really well?
- Are there any tweaks you could ramp up while you have some time to focus?
- Are there any trainings that you could provide?
You really have space to analyze your business holistically and make improvements small and large. In doing so, you’re better positioned to hit the ground running on the other side of this thing.
Re-energize your brand
Brand updates are often pushed to the bottom of the priority list. Why? They take a ton of time, brainpower and energy. When your existing brand is workable enough, it’s pretty hard to justify diverting resources to freshen it up. But, this reset provides a perfect time to dive into brand and messaging updates.
Audit your assets
If you are a small business or startup that handles content internally, now is the time for the content audit that gets perpetually pushed in the interest of other deliverables. Use this time to inventory and fine-tooth your content assets – photo, video, blogs, etc., as well as identify gaps.
- Look critically at your content.
- What content can be repurposed on other channels?
- What are the analytics for published content?
- What performed the best (i.e. resonates and converts)? The worst?
- What links need updating to remain current?
- What CTAs can be optimized?
- What SEO can be optimized?
- What content would be helpful to build in the future?
Once you audit, you’re in a position to generate new content. This means that you’ll find yourself with an entire arsenal for content marketing post-corona. How about that for productivity?
Edit your content
This takes the content audit a step further. If you are content-heavy like us, you probably have loads of video and photo files that could use a little TLC. This is a great time to browse inventory and edit a little more intently than when you were under 18 deadlines. It’s also a great time to edit and manipulate your video content to build a vault of content to push out the latter half of the year.
If you are in an industry that is hit by COVID-related hardships, the more you can do during shut down to adapt and innovate, the more you can get ahead when you are back in action. This means adapting third and fourth quarter campaign strategies and roadmaps. Now is the time to strategize on what will make sense for your audiences, your markets, your business and re-build campaigns accordingly (but flexibility will be key). It’s also the time to deepen skill development and continuing education. There is a wealth of discounted courses on offer right now, making skill development a great way to fill some of that downtime!
If you are still operating but struggling to go remote, here are some of the resources that we love.
- Project Management – Asana / Trello / ClickUp
- Conferencing, meetings, engagement and account management – Zoom
- Team communication – Slack
- Time management – Calendy + Google Calendar
- File sharing – Dropbox, Airtable + Google Drive