March 11th 2020 – the day that the world shutdown. The mysterious coronavirus that allegedly originated in Wuhan, China, had infected the globe and overnight we were forced to adapt to a new and remote way of living. Inevitably this hit businesses hard, many smaller companies were not able to survive the pandemic and consequently dissolved. Businesses that relied on physical custom, such as pubs, cinemas, retail etc., were arguably the most compromised as social restrictions forced their doors to shut. When employees were not furloughed they often found themselves redundant: with a record breaking 402,000 redundancies recorded between September and November 2020, hitting people between the ages of 16-24 the hardest, according to the BBC.
Many companies survived by implementing strategies, and employing technologies that kept their businesses alive. Working from home became the new normal, and even post-pandemic, it is something that employers are encouraging, as many pros from working from home have been observed. Productivity levels were on the rise as the stress, time and costs of commuting were eliminated, not to mention the reduction in carbon footprint. Employees were generally more engaged, present and productive as they found themselves to be less distracted working from home, and the flexible working hours allowed for employees to schedule their day in the most effective way. In April 2020 ONS recorded that 46.6% of people in employment did some work from home, and 86.0% of those working from home, did so as a result of the pandemic.
However, mostly for businesses, throughout the pandemic it was a matter of surving as opposed to thriving. It is understandable that with the uncertainty of covid, businesses have held tight and looked forwards to the better days ahead without much consideration of how they are going to perform when things do resume to normal. However, with the world seemingly resuming to a pre-covid state, now is the time for businesses to start planning for the future and getting a game plan together to secure business success. In order for a business to be fruitful, the following needs to be considered:
- How can a business use social medias to capatalise on consumer engagement in order to accumulate maximum audience engagement with marketing strategy and concepts?
- What is the product’s/service’s relevance in a post-covid world? Does the business need to redesign and readapt? It the USP still a USP?
- Are there new opportunities for the product/service as a result of the pandemic?
- What are the rival businesses? How can the product/service be elevated to be the best on the market.
Although we may not be able to predict exactly what the future will hold, we can certainly make a plan, and perhaps a backup plan would be a good idea too… Just in case!