Are you fixing supply side bottlenecks when demand has disappeared?
Chintan Ghuntla / June 2, 2020
COVID-19 has forced many companies to start working remotely. Many companies are concentrating on how to make remote working effective. Even companies and industries that have traditionally avoided anything to do with working from home, have grudgingly started to find ways to make this possible.

While learning to work remotely is important, these are operational measures that will help keep you and your company on your feet in the short run.

But how do you plan to address the elephant in the room?

The biggest problem facing most companies is that demand seems to have almost completely evaporated. So after a point it won't matter how strong your operations are, if you have no customer to serve.

Whether your company is already able to start operations, or whether that will happen later, all companies will need to take steps to generate demand for their goods' or services' offerings.

You'll need to educate your customers that you are taking all possible safety precautions. You will need to reassure them that you are with them, that you care for them.

What all businesses require now is marketing in its purest form - no gimmicks, no hustling, no hoodwinking your customers. All businesses will need to educate, empathise, and inform their customers.

This will help generate demand as your customers slowly open up to you, and learn to trust you again. Because right now they are scared.

This is not going to be easy, it won't happen overnight. It will require perseverance. Your customers are likely hurting, and it will take some time to heal.

Big global corporations recognise this. And you must have noticed that they have already started engaging with their customers in various ways.

Small and medium businesses are still sceptical if they should resume marketing activities. However, marketing is the only way to generate demand for your product or service.

This is a crucial period, as we all slowly get back on our feet. Businesses need to think about next few months and the year ahead.

Cutting costs will only help till a certain point. If solely cost cutting could save us, the best way would be to cut costs to zero and shut down the business!

However, that's not the solution. Cost cutting starts giving diminishing returns after a point.

Your marketing activities will likely need to be looked at afresh. The world has changed, priorities have changed.

However, you customers are still waiting to hear from you. And they will likely come back to you sooner rather than later. But only if you ask nicely.

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