While the pandemic continues to take its grim toll throughout the United States, there has been recent good news of late regarding vaccines and therapeutics. However, let’s get real, this tough business climate is not going away soon.
In history there have always been business highs and lows. In recent memory was the recession of 2007-2008, the worst downturn since The Great Depression.
“I lost millions in the market crash, my marriage of 17 years ended, I was lost and I was scared,” says profit coach Susie Carder. “What I did know was how to build a business and how to generate business. I also made a commitment to myself that I would never be this leveraged again.”
Carder, author of Power Your Profits, is truly a self-made millionaire. She started with one salon and health spa and built it into one of the most successful businesses in the country. She then founded and sold three profitable companies, the last of which sold for eight figures to Cengage.
So today, with everything going on, what does Carder advise small business owners and solopreneurs to do? She is not bullish on retreating into hunker-down survival mode.
“Create your plan, short term and long term,” says Carder. “Financially, professionally, personally, for your clients, for your business, everything needs a plan. Make a budget. Keep serving your clients. Be a leader. Be the voice of reason when they need it most. Be radical and take practical action. Don’t shut down, don’t be afraid. Keep marketing your business, leverage social media, live stream and online components.”
Carder advises that small business owners should keep connecting with clients and share videos on your expertise. Look at your current database and see how to have connections with clients online or over the phone. Use Zoom, Facetime and virtual networking groups to stay connected.
My advice echoes Carders advice. Here is my top ten list of ways I have used to make connections during the pandemic:
- Host small-scale seminars on Zoom that offer your clients problem-solving tips
- Get invited to speak on other people’s online seminars and webinars
- Host roundtables on Zoom on a topic, invite other business owners, and post to YouTube
- Obtain invitations to speak at online events
- Participate in the networking opportunities at the events like breakout rooms
- Solicit invitations to speak on other people’s podcasts
- Host virtual meetings for coffee over Zoom with people I meet on LinkedIn
- Offer free strategy calls to prospects when I speak
- Join a mastermind group with other business owners that meets online
- Volunteer with associations to help them stage online events (committee meetings are networking opportunities)
“We don’t realize, but we can actually meet and touch more people without leaving our house,” says Carder. “Turn off the news, don’t let it distract you and continue to watch it on repeat. If you must be informed, do it online or watch it for a maximum of 30 minutes in the morning, at night, or important times.”
A serious car accident once threatened Carder’s life and instantly took her away from her business. As she took time off for surgery and healing, something incredible happened behind the scenes. Not only did her business stay afloat, it expanded tenfold. The systems she created enabled her staff to carry on without her. Her calling became crystal clear: Bring this level of freedom to others.