5 sure-fire ways to pivot your business right now

Apr 2, 2020

We’re certainly experiencing extraordinary times. Life as we knew it has disappeared. And collectively, we’ve all been thrown into uncertainty, as things continue to shift at a rapid pace.

Suddenly, whole industries have been wiped out overnight on a global scale. And many businesses have had to close their doors indefinitely.

The impact of this virus is devastating. And the fact no-one saw it coming illustrates how nothing in life is permanent or guaranteed. Unexpected challenges will arise when we least expect it.

But amongst the current chaos, there is opportunity.

Some sectors are thriving. New ways of working are emerging. Businesses are innovating as they adapt to the new market.

So, whilst it’s a challenging time for us all, it’s crucial you take the time to think about what and how you need to pivot right now.

Now is the time to put measures in place to safeguard your business during this period. As well as taking steps now to futureproof it well into the future.

Back in 2018, I pivoted my in-person consultancy and transitioned into an online coaching business and my work is now 100% virtual.

Was it easy? No! But I saw the opportunity to create a more sustainable business model.

One that gave me the ability to be location independent and do the work I was passionate about with clients all over the globe. The opportunity to deliver services to my clients more conveniently. And finally find the freedom and flexibility that I was craving.

Read on to learn some simple questions to help you figure out where and how to pivot in your business at this time.

You’ll discover 5 practical ideas you can implement right now to keep your business thriving in the coming weeks, months and beyond.

MEET YOUR CUSTOMERS WHERE THEY ARE

Right now, people are feeling anxious about their health and the uncertainty surrounding the economy, their jobs and businesses. They’re also overwhelmed and pre-occupied as they adjust to a new way of life. Working from home and staying in — with partners and kids in tow!

However, the fundamentals of business don’t change. You need to start with the problems your clients are experiencing. Then identify how you can serve them — the solutions you and your services provide.

To figure out where your customers are at this moment, start by asking yourself:

1. What immediate challenges are my clients experiencing?
2. How do I help them solve these problems?

At this time — more than ever — you need to meet your clients where they are right now.

WHERE DO YOU NEED TO PIVOT?

Once you’re clear on this, the next step is to look at your existing services.

3. Where do you need to tweak your current offers — or even pivot your business altogether — to meet your clients where they are now?

Look for the opportunities and gaps in the current market, as well as ways you can pivot now for the long-term. Here are some ideas about what and how you can pivot:

Idea #1 — Take your services online

Video conferencing apps like Zoom and Houseparty have recently experienced a surge of activity. Businesses are moving to online meetings with clients and teams. Our social lives have transitioned to virtual ‘happy hours’ and dinner parties!

In response to quarantines and social distancing, many consultants and service based entrepreneurs have moved from in-person to virtual consults. It’s a great time to reflect on how you work and deliver your services, now and into the future. It could open up new opportunities to provide more convenient, hassle-free services to your customers on a permanent basis.

Speakers, trainers and facilitators are creating virtual summits and workshops to support their communities at this time. In the process, they’re producing assets they can use or sell in future and are opening up new ways of working. Many companies are using this as an opportunity to take their businesses completely online.

What opportunities exist for you to take your services online?

Idea #2 — Thinking creatively + innovating

Some businesses are taking this a step further, by coming up with creative ways to pivot in the current market. As an example, my favourite skin clinic — which had to shut its doors indefinitely last week — is offering virtual skin consults on FaceTime.

This is a smart business move, which is seeing them roster on one staff member a day to fulfill these services and answer customer queries 24/7 on social media. As a result, they’re still able to sell services and distribute plenty of products online.

Where are the opportunities for you to innovate right now?

Idea #3 — Tackling projects you ‘never have time for’

If workflow is slowing down, consider using this time to tackle some of the projects you can never quite get to during busier periods.

Think about creating long-term assets or passive income streams that you can scale or deliver virtually. How can you package up your knowledge and expertise? Consider do it yourself (DIY) programs, teaching newer professionals in your industry or online workshops and digital products to support your services.

Find ways to increase visibility or market your business. Start that podcast or finally get around to those website updates you never usually have time to work on!

Idea #4 — Create free content

Creating quality content that adds value to your audience should be a key part of your long-term marketing strategy. If this isn’t something you’ve started or done consistently in the past, now is the time to begin! For example, accounting firms are providing updates to clients on the latest tax relief measures and COVID-19 government assistance packages to support businesses.

Your free content could be a blog on your website, a You-Tube channel or video blog, or a podcast. Go with your strengths, choose one medium and commit to producing one new piece of content every week or fortnight. Focus on being of service, adding value and creating content to support people where they’re at right now.

Remember, you don’t own social platforms, LinkedIn connections or Instagram followers. It’s therefore important to host all unique content on your own website. Then, you can share snippets on social media and drive traffic back to your website.

Start building an email marketing list of potential customers that you can nurture and make offers to in future. Create a free e-book, video, checklist, audio recording or something of value and have people sign-up and give their email address to receive it. Then, share your weekly content to build trust with these connections over time.

Idea #5 — Introduce lower priced offerings

If your client base has been financially impacted, consider creating lower priced offerings to support them with what they need right now. Be flexible, think about low risk/cost offerings and focus on servicing your clients in the areas they need immediate help.

This doesn’t have to mean discounting your existing offers. Instead, consider introducing more affordable services or new ways of working with you on a shorter-term or one-off basis. Longer-term payment plans and offering additional bonuses are also smart strategies at this time.

These ideas have helped my clients and I figure out what and how to pivot in the current market to safeguard our businesses and best support our customers at this time. I hope they support you too.

Need further support to pivot your business in the current market?

Get a proven, step-by-step process you can use now and any time in the future when you want to develop a new program, service — or even pivot your business completely! Get it NOW.

Stacey Back is a certified coach, business + career strategist and the Founder of Profile Careers. She helps high-achieving professionals go from feeling trapped in their corporate careers to starting a side business — or transitioning full-time into their own consultancy.

Stacey also supports existing consultants who are stuck in a business model they hate, working longer hours than ever or struggling to stay productive and make money in the current market. She helps them set the right foundations in their business so they can find more time, attract the right clients and create a consulting business doing the work they love — one that supports their ideal lifestyle.

Stacey works virtually with individuals based across Australia and internationally.