The Business Exchange Swindon & Wiltshire Edition 49: June/July 2020 - Page 26

COMMUNITY VOICES TAKE CARE WITH YOUR PR WH COMING OUT OF LOCKDOWN We are starting to come out of lockdown in the UK it’s going to be a very bumpy ride for business. Yo before you more than ever before – how is your re It’s time for an honest assessment of how your clients, customers, suppliers and fellow business people and community are seeing you, talking about you, sharing and commenting on your brand. Or have you become invisible? With this in mind here are ten tips to consider around your PR as lockdown slowly lifts: MAKE A PR PLAN AND INVEST as ‘normal’ is not coming back any time soon – if you’ve never really embraced PR before for you or your business, now is the time. You will have to consider different things when it comes to the customer experience and you will need to communicate that in many different ways. BE VISIBLE – using gentle sales messages show your audience and community that you are open for business and also ‘how’ you are going about your business. EMBRACE VIDEO – video posts or animations rank higher on most platforms than pictures and higher than just text. Ensure the video quality matches any product or service you are showcasing. WORK WITH YOUR LOCAL MEDIA – work with newspapers, online influencers, magazines, radio and tv as that kind of visibility creates credibility and visibility you will rarely achieve on your own. Understand what they want NOT what you want to them to have (unless you are paying). AVOID RADIO SILENCE – if lockdown and the effect of Covid19 has made you retreat into your shell, start being present now. If you do not, others will take market share. Why? Radio silence will speak volumes to your potential customers. Have you gone bust? Are you still in lockdown? Do you care? ATTITUDE TO EMPLOYEES – as your business comes back onstream and your team come back to work, consider how you treat them. If you start being heavy handed with staff who are scared to come back, cannot come back due to home-schooling commitments EVEN IF YOU ARE LEGALLY WITHIN YOUR RIGHTS – consider what your behaviour says about your brand. Reputational damage caused by a disgruntled employee/ex-employee who feels bullied could cost much more to your reputation than trying to reach a workable compromise. VALUE YOUR SUPPLY CHAIN – for many businesses, the supply chain fluidity is vital to returning to business health. If you have not paid your bills or just let people go in a very uncaring manner, you could be in trouble. Those people may wash their hands of you as you did with them. Start putting out those feelers to see who’s still with you and who you might need to replace. Are you clearly commun your business makes a d CREATE STAND-OUT MARKETING THAT S 14