With the government announcement on February 22nd unveiling the roadmap back to normality, it feels for the first time as if there is a light at the end of the tunnel. When so much of the last 12 months has been spent in crisis mode and survival planning, it now feels like the first time that long-term planning can be done with some grounded knowledge that things will be back to normal in the not-too-distant future. However, after 12 months of turbulence, you might be looking at a business you operate today that is very different from the established model that you had before lockdown. If you’re wondering how to relaunch a business ahead of March 29th, April 12th, May 17th or June 21st, then take a look at the guide below from our business development and branding experts at AsOne.
Relaunching your business after coronavirus requires you to do two things simultaneously. The first of these is publicity – people need to know that you’re back and that you’re open for business. Secondly, you need to rebuild trust. People understand why some services had to be suspended during the pandemic – you need to convince them that these services are now safe for use.
Your communications and digital marketing serve to achieve both of these goals, and understanding how these tools work is crucial to understanding how to relaunch a business.
How To Relaunch A Business: Communication
One of the most important places for you to communicate with your customers is on social media. The best blanket advice that we can give is whichever platforms you used most frequently before your business or services were interrupted, should be the platforms that you prioritise relaunching on. If that’s Instagram or Facebook, then highly visual content or even video could be a really important tool.
However, it’s not the only place to communicate, and there’s always a chance that your social media messages are lost amongst your customers’ feeds. Many social platforms do not show page followers 100% of the posts from any given page to stop the user feeling like the platform is stale. Communicating on your website gives you total control over what content is prioritised and how long it stays there. Consider dedicating space on your site to your relaunch, or even a pop-up or permanent banner – so that whatever the reason someone comes to your site, they know about your relaunch.
How To Relaunch A Business: Rebuilding Trust
We’re looking at reopening a society after months of being told how unsafe the outside is. If you run a close-contact service that had to be suspended or a service which congregated large numbers of people, it’s possible that your customers feel apprehensive about returning. To relaunch this part of your business effectively, you’ll need to deal with the doubts and worries of your customers.
Sharing images of new furniture or spaces (eg individual booths or perspex screens) is a great way to show people that you understand their worries. Other pictures of staff wearing protective gear might help too. Lean into ideas of returning to normal, rather than something unfamiliar and different. If relevant (and true), reassure that your staff are vaccinated.
Email marketing is a great way to proactively start conversations about safety with previously engaged customers. Getting ahead of concerns, rather than waiting for them to be raised, demonstrates that you are in tune with your customer base, and will put minds at rest over a whole host of issues.
Relaunching your business after COVID-19 doesn’t mean starting all over again. By harnessing the power of your digital, you can reignite the customers that you had to disappoint a year ago. For more advice on how to relaunch a business, and a bespoke relaunch strategy for your business, contact our experts today.