This is probably the only podcast you’ll hear from us that we hope is obsolete quickly after it airs.
In March of 2020 we were all bombarded and disrupted with a change to our lives and business.
Some believe that shutting down businesses and locking down is the best way to move forward. We are not here to talk politics, but we are going to talk about is what to do IF there is a second lockdown.
What you’ll learn today:
- How to build a business sustainable through a lockdown and even thrives.
- Why panicking isn’t needed and how you can avoid it
- And the best way for you to come out of a lockdown if it happens and continue to grow your business in stride.
If you’re a local business owner who wants to drop the monthly marketing agency retainer and set up the three core pillars to successfully grow your business online, watch our free training here: https://leadsaccelerator.bitbranding.co/local-business-leads
Connect with us
Aaron [00:00:00] Hey ya'll! Thank you so much for jumping into another episode of The Marketing Natives. Whether you're watching on video or audio, we just really appreciate it and know that your time is super valuable. So, thank you, especially as you probably clicked on this topic and you're like, dang! What are they going to talk about? Well, it may surprise you or may not surprise you, but there is a lot of really good information in here to help you and your business navigate this lockdown. We're going to be talking about how to plan for 2021 and what this looks like for your business, things that you should consider if there is a lockdown. Hopefully this will not be a valid podcast, but we're going to support it out. So things to plan for: we're talking about building an online presence where you should focus your time on building an online presence, how it could help you grow your business, and more importantly, why. And then, most importantly, we're going to be talking about the calming that you should have by planning, not panicking and understanding that this is temporary. So we're going to talk about things to help you so that you don't panic or things that you can put into place so that it's not as big of a burden as what it was back in March of 2020. So all this and more hope you guys get a ton out of this episode. Check it out.
Narrator [00:01:15] This is The Marketing Natives providing actionable ways to grow, improve and succeed in your business and now your hosts; Christian and Aaron.
Christian [00:01:32] First things first, I would say you need to plan.
Christian [00:01:39] I think making sure that you understand the things that need to be in place in order for your business to sort of sustain for that time period, I think it's the number one step.
Christian [00:01:52] So even if the second lockdown doesn't happen, it's still beneficial for you to create this plan, have it written somewhere, have a plan of action and try to create scenarios on: What if this happens? What if it goes longer? What if it's shorter? What if there's absolutely zero business coming in? How are you going to be able to sustain your business? I think that doing it now obviously gives you an advantage where before I think anyone wasn't ready for a lockdown.
Aaron [00:02:29] No.
Christian [00:02:29] It sort of came as a surprise for a lot of people, even for us. Luckily, I mean, we were able to adapt pretty quickly. But I think the very first thing that you need to do if you're thinking about, okay, what if the second lockdown really comes?
Christian [00:02:48] It's a yes, just start planning.
Aaron [00:02:50] One thing I listened to, when was it? I guess maybe it was June or July and there was a guy who was interviewing Brandon Lucero. Regardless of who the person is, what he was saying is that, like, he's a financial guy and he was saying, okay, so you need to have six months worth of business and there's not any revenue to kind of think about. What he's saying is better in the fall, which would have been like October or November, which is what they've found now is that it's kind of rolling. The reason we're talking about a second lockdown is to give context, it's because people believe that once power changes hands and what's going on in the country with cases and stuff, that there may be a second lockdown, which is why we're having this. But what he was saying is that like, people in March were planning for like the next three months when really if you're thinking about it, it's like, okay, doing a three month, six month and then 12 month plan, and the people who had been doing the 12 month plan are figuring out the 12 month plan back in March or April are obviously in a much better position now because they plan for that long term. So for this one, it's like January, I guess, is really the time period that we would potentially see a change like the end of January. The talk right now is like maybe four week, six week lockdown or whatever, but like planning for like what Christian said maybe a little bit farther, maybe if it's shorter and how you can continuously bring in business, which we'll talk about it here in a second. But I think the best question to ask yourself is, what would you wish you would have done differently back in March now that you have a little bit of time?
Aaron [00:04:30] So like we were told, if somebody would have told Christian in January, 'Hey, March 17th, the world's going to change completely', we would have been planning frantically to like, plan for this because we didn't know what was going to happen. We don't know what's going to happen in January either. I hope this more than anything, as a side note, I hope this podcast is completely obsolete. I hope that it's not needed at all. People are looking for a lockdown because they're thinking about some kind of church camp like church lock in or something like that and not a lockdown on the economy.
Aaron [00:04:59] So planning is one thing and that's going to be different for you. But planning for that three months, six months, twelve months for you, loosely just writing it out and thinking about it, so the fact you're listening to this podcast is huge. And then, the second part, like I said, is just what would you have done differently in March? If you get another chance to do something differently in January of 2021.
Christian [00:05:23] I think when it comes to planning, I guess what things come to mind for you, we are thinking about, okay, I guess what are maybe some of the topics or things that I need to focus on.
Aaron [00:05:35] Yeah, I think first off, people think about it financially, so the business, but keeping yourself employed or paid, your employees paid and then what are the necessities, so financially. But then also like, okay, this could affect our employees. So how can we plan to have the conversation with them ahead of time? Like, hey, if this happens, this is our plan.
Aaron [00:05:59] Don't worry, we're not going to freak out. It's literally, this is our plan.
Aaron [00:06:02] It's kind of like preparing for a fire drill or tornado. Hey, this could happen. A fire could happen, a tornado could happen. Hopefully it doesn't. But this is what we're going to do in that way nobody panics. So, yeah, I think finances, personnel and then personal too just having a conversation, I think one on one, depending on the size of your company, like, hey, how is this affecting you personally? Because there may be things that are going on in the company that we don't know about or that have been affected by it. So I think that's all I can think of. What would you or would there be anything else to add? I guess that I don't know if I'm missing anything.
Christian [00:06:37] I was just thinking I mean, obviously economic.
Christian [00:06:40] I think you talked about, you know, your staff and your people. Obviously, I think communication changes. So having to plan on how you are going to communicate with your people and your clients.
Aaron [00:06:50] Yeah.
Christian [00:06:52] And then, I mean, I guess.
Aaron [00:06:55] That's a good one, though, I feel like we should definitely step up the client communication too. Like, hey, we're preparing and just reassuring them: if you're serving those people and not to freak you out, but we are planning so that you guys don't skip a beat. So we're working on your behalf to make it happen. I think that's something absolute to note there.
Christian [00:07:12] Yeah. Then communicate with the client on what you're doing differently and how things are going to somewhat stay the same, hopefully. Obviously, I mean, I'm hearing what we're saying and there's going to be some companies that this just won't work right for them. So that's another thing that you're going to figure out, it's you know, this might not work 100%. It might mean, that you know, you will need to lay off some people, maybe even restructure the way that you do business. I think we saw it early on with restaurants and doing curbside pickup and doing the sort of family style dinner packages.
Aaron [00:08:01] Yeah.
Christian [00:08:01] Uncooked food; they just take home and cook it yourself. So I think there were a lot of really good creative ideas that came from that and things that are probably going to stay with us forever like curbside pickup.
Aaron [00:08:12] Yeah. Alcohol.
Christian [00:08:13] That's all integrated. Yeah. Alcohol to go. Those things are almost already integrated into the platform than you know: Yelp, DoorDash and Uber Eats, like now they just have options for curbside pickup even though we're not on lockdown anymore.
Christian [00:08:30] Those things are still available. So I think that those things are going to definitely stick around. So yeah, it's also thinking about, you know, what things you can do creatively in your business to get more business or maybe change or modify your services a little bit. You're offering a little bit to accommodate for that. So hopefully, I think as far as like planning, I think that's probably the most crucial. I mean, if your business depends on brick and mortar, being open doors and how can you creatively shift that focus? Maybe selling online?
Aaron [00:09:05] I was going to say, yeah. Like even we had an influx of people who were like, 'We have a brick and mortar location, can we move our business online?' So like if you're a clothing boutique, how can you build an online website? Like it's still November or depending on when you're listening to this, December, you have a couple, maybe four or five weeks from listening to this or whatever, like getting started on a new website to sell online, maybe you pushed it.
Aaron [00:09:28] You know, six months ago because you're like things got better, like we were only locked down for so long and then things got better. So things started to come back. But then you're like, I really don't want to go through that again. Like, what are the steps I could take to make that happen or to shift more online?
Christian [00:09:44] Yeah, exactly.
Christian [00:09:46] And then, talking about online, what would be something that maybe everyone can do on social?
Aaron [00:09:57] I was going to say like something we've preached.
Aaron [00:10:01] If you've been listening to the podcast for a while, maybe you guys it's your first time, so thank you for listening. But if you've been listening for a while, you know that we're huge proponents of getting on social media. I feel like there's been a lot of people I've talked to who kind of feel bad because they've thrived during this time because they've built a brand. So I think just focusing now and saying, okay, I'm going to get over the fear of doing video. I'm going to get over the fear of, like, getting on this platform, but just building some kind of online presence, even if it's just one platform.
Aaron [00:10:29] You just like, look, my customers on Instagram and I'm a restaurant and I'm just going to go all in on Instagram Reels or I'm going to go all in on IGTV or stories and I'm going to build up my business right now and have one on one conversations with people, and that's going to sustain me for what's going on in the future. So I think that just building an online presence is something everybody can do, like every business should be on social media. The smaller you are, probably even as better because you can be, I guess, more ninja like. You can move quicker and like to adapt to your customers. I think at that point you're just putting yourself in a much better position to be successful. I think, you know, there's a lot of my opinion, but I believe that business owners, if you're listening obviously right now, most of you guys are business owners. The best business owners are they do the best when their backs kind of up against the wall. So it's like this is right now, if you're listening to this and you're planning these things right now and it doesn't happen then great, but you have a potential lockdown and, you know, weighing in on you have a deadline. So when your back's up against a wall, like, what are you going to do? You don't want to go out of business. You want to innovate, you want to still continue to grow. So doing something like this may catapult you to that next level and I think that's something everybody could do.
Christian [00:11:44] Yeah. Also just thinking about, like example for us and some things that I guess change from that.
Christian [00:11:53] I think, number one, it forced us to use the tools that we already had.
Aaron [00:12:01] Yeah.
Christian [00:12:01] Use them a little bit more efficient, so things like a ClickUp, like a project management software. Now, like you actually go to a project, you go to clients and you actually get to see a lot of information on there, because when we were away, that was our main tool of communication. And then, I think also time blocking our calendars.
Aaron [00:12:22] Yeah, that started too.
Christian [00:12:23] That's something that started, you know, during the lockdown where we were away from each other. So we kind of wanted to keep track to make sure that everyone's building out their day like they're supposed to be working on the things that they need to be working on.
Aaron [00:12:34] Right.
Christian [00:12:34] That sort of has carried through this whole time. Even today, we still do those things, which is really good. I mean, it's like you said, like, I feel like we needed to get to do those things.
Aaron [00:12:45] We never had the push.
Christian [00:12:47] Yeah. We never had and that really pushed us to be more efficient in those areas.
Aaron [00:12:52] It also forced us to finish the training. Like it took, I think, to write out the training for like our lead accelerator program, to go through a training, it took maybe two weeks to do it. But I think if we wouldn't have had a lockdown and forced us to do more business online, then it would have been, you know, maybe by the end of the year. We kind of filled the gap with what's going on. And even so, it allowed us because you mentioned ClickUp our project management. We started using it, but then we got rid of something else. I think hopefully it has saved us a decent amount of time, which is another app we were using. We use a lot of Slack, but we got rid of Slack just because we abused it. I think more so than to use it as a tool.
Aaron [00:13:35] But we kind of cut that out and I don't think that would have been possible if we wouldn't have made the shift to doing everything instead of ClickUp, because then it would have seemed like it was too far fetched to make that happen. So there's actually been a lot of good to come out of it and allowing us to plan for it would be really good.
Aaron [00:13:53] You know, I guess, the conversation for Christian, we've had two or three conversations about maybe planning out for what this looks like for the lockdown for us, because we want to do the same thing. We're not just going to say it. We need to practice what we preach. But I think one of the things for us is just also stepping our social game too. We used to have, I'm not saying our social media is bad. Hopefully you guys like our social media, but it could be better like we know we can be so much better.
Aaron [00:14:20] I think that this may force us to say, like, okay, let's take full advantage of how we bring in customers that way too.
Christian [00:14:27] I think, I mean, we have a lot of different revenue streams and obviously, Local Marketing Academy comes to mind, as far as like, okay, that's something that we should probably be working on and pushing, you know, during that time. We're right now with the past, what? Six, eight months we've done the Local Marketing Academy workshops through Zoom, whereas before we should do it in person and have to basically get a conference room which costs money and then food, which costs money as well.
Christian [00:15:03] So now we're actually cheaper by doing it just through Zoom.
Aaron [00:15:06] We could do it all over the country.
Christian [00:15:07] We can do it all over the country.
Christian [00:15:08] So, I think that's definitely a huge opportunity for us and that goes back to creating just different revenue streams or figuring out your services and accommodating for that. So I think I mean, that would be a huge opportunity for us to concentrate more on that and trying to expand that too.
Christian [00:15:25] I think that would definitely help us cushion the loss of other clients or services normally received during that time.
Aaron [00:15:36] Just to clarify for Local Marketing Academy like that's over Zoom but basically each month we present on a topic, like Christian did actually ironically today about Instagram Reels, like basically everything you needed to know and like walked you through it, answered questions. And so, like, each month we have a topic that we speak about and then a private Facebook group. So it's a really great concept. We just haven't grown it to what the full potential should be.
Aaron [00:16:01] But if you're interested in that, you should definitely, there'll be a link into this. But I think it's LocalMarketing.Academy. But check it out. It's not a plug for that, but maybe of interest to you. But I think the one thing that comes to mind, whenever I would just like thinking about notes or talking about this is I don't like the fear mentality.
Aaron [00:16:23] So whenever you're thinking about something like this, if somebody says lockdown or quarantine or like any of those words, they all have a negative connotation. So let's try to flip that on its head, which I know is sometimes hard to do. But I think really to be successful throughout this whole thing, if you're planning for it, it does happen that you feel at ease, but more so that this is temporary, like it's not like we're going to be locked down forever.
Aaron [00:16:50] Like it's just literally not going to happen. You know, what people were talking about before it's just speculation. But four to six weeks, which seems like a long time, but it's four to six weeks of your life, which is just like a little you know, it's like a blip in the radar. So this is temporary and it's not forever. So I think that's something to think about, like how to navigate a lockdown is that this will end. It's not like the quote unquote pain is forever.
Christian [00:17:14] Right.
Christian [00:17:15] Yeah. I mean, yeah, I think that's something very important to keep in mind. To me, almost the whole 2020 feels like a blip. It's weird, it feels like a blip and it doesn't feel like a blip. It feels like forever. But I think it feels more so like a blip because of the lockdown and it just feels like you've lost a few months of your life like doing nothing. But I think keeping hope and knowing that it's temporary; it's not going to last forever and that, knowing that you're prepared, that you have a plan, that you have options, you have different ideas and that you're willing to persist and push through. That's how normally great things happen.
Aaron [00:18:00] Yeah, It was actually ironic because there was a lot of irony going on in this podcast. I was actually talking this morning about just looking at the number one reason that business owners are successful and that's something to think about: is not talent, skills or team or anything like the number one reason that business owners are successful, quote unquote 'successful and stayed in business is more so perseverance'. So that's also, should you just play into this right here and kind of a side note, whenever you were talking earlier, I was thinking of like it's been kind of a blip. But to me, it's just like certain songs remind me of certain months, usually it's just like a period of time. But like certain songs remind me of a certain month and your birthday this year seemed like it was, so Christian's birthday is in February, it just felt like it was two years ago because it was just in February.
Aaron [00:18:55] So it's like everything there is pre-covid. It's like I ran a marathon in January but I remember that was before and like even now I'd wake up sometimes and I'm like, oh this was just a bad dream, where I can go do my normal stuff and and we've talked about this before, but we're doing a lot of the same things. It's just there's a little bit more precaution, but things are like opening back up. Things are quote unquote 'back to normal-ish'.
Aaron [00:19:22] But there's still, you know, this thing that's not completely normal yet. So I don't feel like I've been this false year of 2020. We're walking in and then kind of have a weird spot, I guess.
Christian [00:19:34] Yeah, for sure.
Aaron [00:19:36] All right, hopefully out of anything, you got a couple of main nuggets here, really good information of what you should do. I know we didn't talk specifics, but at least hopefully gave you the ideas to go and just grab a pen and paper, grab an iPad, grab your computer and just start planning, thinking about what this looks like for you in January, building an online presence and then remembering that this is only temporary. So, even if you didn't take anything away from this or you don't take any action at all, it still is only temporary. It's just to be thinking about the future for your business, because the sooner you can think about it, the less stressful or anxious that it will become. If you guys are listening to the podcast for the first time, thank you so much. Don't know how you came to us. The podcast doesn't tell us specifics on that, but thank you so much for listening. Let's jump to this, if this is your first time, please make sure that you subscribe, whether it's on YouTube or on Facebook: like it. If you're on Instagram, you follow us YouTube, podcasts app or wherever you found us. Make sure that you subscribe because we put out new episodes of The Marketing Natives every single Monday. If you have been listening to us for a while, and you're like, okay, dang! I've been listening to these guys, but this episode really resonated with me.
Aaron [00:20:53] I really needed this push to help with the lockdown, the planning and this is just super clear and concise information, then please go over to Apple podcast and leave us an honest rating and review. This is what really helps us to reach more people and also just help us to improve the podcast.
Aaron [00:21:11] So, again, thank you guys so much for listening. Make sure to stay safe and if you have anything to add to this, we'd love to hear that. So just shoot us a message over on Instagram @BitBranding. Thank you guys and have an awesome rest of your day.
Narrator [00:21:23] The Marketing Native's podcast is a production of Bit Branding.