• Wendy Perry

How to pivot in a crisis: using the ‘customer’s customer’ approach


To say the past few weeks have been challenging is a massive understatement. Businesses have ended, projects stopped, and bookings have vanished. Few industries are immune from the dual economic-health crisis, with small businesses, self-employed and start-ups getting hit hard.

But in the midst of this chaos, there’s a fresh possibility to pivot and rebirth an idea, brand or business. Because, that’s what the best, the smartest and those with survivor mindsets do. Are you rolling up your sleeves in the face of the crisis, solve problems, discover new ways to reach (and serve) your customers?

Going back to basics

Getting your mindset right is the first step, to handle the mix of emotions. It’s about bringing your focus back into the potential, ‘what if’, with a lean start-up mode mindset. Ask the important questions like:

o What are the problems that customers are facing now?

o How do you find customers?

o What can you do that will help customers?

o What are the objections?

o How do you make a sale?

Yes, sometimes there are no solutions to what you were doing, which is the case for a number of face-to-face businesses. Instead of trying to get around the barriers, look to explore different opportunities and complementary services that are an extension of what you normally deliver.

As soon as this is over and business recovers (in whatever version it does), what will you take to the next phase?

Relationships as currency

While there’s a lot of free or discounted information right now, there’s a strategy behind this method. That is, tapping into your customers and prospects networks. This lateral approach can help leverage the contacts of your audience, both to validate new ideas, attract attention, and make sales.

Give them such a great experience that they can’t help telling others about. By default, you’ll get more people talking about what you do. The customer’s customer approach garners trust, especially at a time like now. This is just one example of a way to make it easier for people to want to collaborate with you

Taking the entrepreneurial mindset means knowing your why. Why are you in business? Why are you different? Why will others want to work with you? Thinking left of centre about ways to innovate can help you get closer to your customers (and their network).

Deconstruct your business

You might find and introduce new offerings that improve your business. This time’s allowing us to delve into ideas that have been squashed into the background by ‘busyness.’

Look at everything that you do and pull it apart. Is there a part that you can bring to life to solve someone’s problem? People are still happy to invest in solutions because issues don’t subside and other emerge

Aim for visibility

Focus on providing value, be transparent about your offer and focus on improving your customer’s circumstances. It’s a fresh change from talking about your product or service. Prime your audience to start thinking, ‘oh yeah, that’s a hassle.’ And, let people know you’re there to help, if and when they need.

You might tend to keep our personal and business lives separate, including social media but, this is where you’ll find your prospects and have the ‘permission’ to use the customer’s customer method. Turning connections and leads to customers, fans, supporters, and advocates.

Speaking of great FREE resources, enjoy Switch Start Scale’s library of webinar recordings, slide decks, articles, and grant opportunities.

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