At a time when businesses are simply focused on survival, it’s tricky to think about planning for the future.

At a time when businesses are simply focused on survival, it’s tricky to think about planning for the future.

But in order to weather the storms ahead, companies need short and long-term goals, as well as an overall vision. The question for many is – where to start?

These three suggestions are by no means a thorough plan, but nonetheless they’ll help you steer your business through these tough times and hopefully emerge from the other side stronger than ever.

1. Communicate

Building customer relationships is crucial to securing lasting loyalty and stable custom and it’s based on ensuring that your customers feel valued and listened to.

Communication must be a two-way street, so social media is a great tool for sharing business updates, but remember that your content should also encourage them to engage with you. For instance, use your social media posts to ask them direct questions about their thoughts and opinions. Many social media platforms even have a polling feature especially for this!

Don’t forget about old-fashioned communication like mailing lists either. Whilst not the most in-vogue form of digital marketing, they are an excellent method for keeping in touch, as well as sharing deals and discounts that reward your customers for their loyalty.

Customers will appreciate this type of communication and taking their feedback on board ensures that the next direction of your business it tailored to their needs.

2. Diversify

For many businesses, the current crisis has precipitated a need for diversification – amongst the most prominent examples are the numerous distilleries and breweries switching their efforts to produce hand sanitiser.

Naturally, diversification is not a one-size-fits-all approach – if demand for your core product or service remains strong, then this may not be the route for your business.

But if it is something you are considering, think about how you can switch it up. Seek inspiration from your customers – ask them what new additions they would like to see from your business. Consider too what resources you have available to you, as well as the talents of your team, and how these can be adapted for a new direction.

3. Connect

Business networking is a great way to meet like-minded professionals and experts who can inspire your enterprise.

Unfortunately, these opportunities have been limited in 2020, with most events taking place online and others facing outright cancellation.

But there are still networking opportunities out there to support SMEs. Business hubs such as Arise Innovation offer physical premises as well as virtual office assistance, and are unique in their ability to bring together experts from professional and academic circles.

Hubs like these are perfect for enterprises such as yours and even in these difficult times, enable businesses to connect, network and grow.

We hope these tips help you navigate your business in a lucrative new direction!