Credit to Matt Thomas for this post. I received one of his emails which had this list of 12 questions to ask yourself during the current Coronavirus lockdown. I loved it so much I asked him if I could share it on my blog so here it is in full!
Don’t worry: this ISN’T another post telling you how to ‘pivot’ your business model.
Frankly, I’ve no idea if you should pivot or not.
In fact the only thing I can tell you for definite is that your situation and business will be as unique as everyone else’s and you need to do what works for you.
So instead, I thought I’d share the 12 questions I’m challenging all my clients to ask when figuring out what’s best for them – whether that’s pivoting, pulling back or doubling down.
1) What’s your innate skillset/ability?
How could you harness that outside of your current business or products? Even if you can’t trade… how else could you monetise your knowledge online? Think about what people ‘really’ buy from you… what is the experience and outcome of working with you that makes your services and products unique?
2) What assets do you have that you can sweat?
There’s two minicab firms near me: one has closed; one has pivoted to run deliveries from local butchers, greengrocers. How about you?
3) Who could you partner with?
Now’s the time for collaboration not competition – who’s got the same audience as you but a non-competitive product? Or who could use your skills, know-how or assets? Could you multiply your reach by sharing each other’s marketing power or double your impact by teaming up for an offer?
4) If you stripped everything back, what’s the last product or service you’d lose?
Would your customers select the same thing? What’s the most important thing you do? Focus in one JUST that.
Communicate that’s ALL you’re doing and go all-in on committing to taking people from A to B for just ONE thing. That clarity will focus people’s minds on why to work with you and the single outcome you deliver.
5) How have your clients been impacted?
Listen to what your customers are saying… What’s changed for them? What’s hard right now? What’s frustrating? What do they need badly and quickly? What would they like to have happened at the end of this?
6) How can you help?
Make one list and then divide into where you can add free value and what you could charge for. Sounds simple, but the best ideas often are.
7) What else have you got?
Look at the ideas gathering dust on the ‘later’ shelf or stuff you’ve offered in the past. What could be revived or fast-forwarded as a beta launch?
8) What could you do at a one-off reduced rate or as a ‘pop-up’?
I’m not advocating dropping your prices as such, but now’s the time you could get away with it in the short-term and deliver a win-win limited offer.
9) What could you do for free now… that may create demand for a paid product?
So rather than push out a product some may question the ethics of, provide free support then ask what more people need and would find of value… that way you’re being ‘asked’ to launch it.
10) What can you do now for later?
If not sales, then demand and trust. What can you do now that will create a desire to work with you once we’re all allowed out to play?
11) What can you double down on?
Not everyone is struggling. In fact, many of you will find your customers and clients need you now more than ever before. I’m not suggesting you capitalise on that, but if you’re able to, now’s a smart time to be marketing with good intent. Especially as there may be less noise to compete with and ads will be lower priced. If you’re doing good, now’s a good time to be doing it.
12) Who can support YOU right now?
Now more than ever we need people to talk to, to share with and bounce ideas with, to feel like someone understands. Some times family, friends or business partners are too close or too busy with their own stuff, so make sure you’ve people, groups and places you can talk to – and please do it.