One of Kevin Hillstorm's recent articles got me thinking about the larger economic picture.
(Yes it's in relation to a certain global event going on right now but the thinking goes back to the threat of any large economic downturn)
Kevin's point is that one of three things can happen in the short and mid-term:
- "nothing" really
- "something awful"
We just have no idea which it'll be and what it actually means.
But the key point he makes is that we do have the ability to prepare for the different outcomes now.
One business I know is getting prepared to spend through the downturn. It might sound very contrarian but it has a lot of solid examples of it working. What that means and if they'll be able to keep to that strategy through the downturn, we'll have to see and will depend on them.
(And I'm confident this business will succeed at it as they have very deep resources they can draw on)
During 2008's crash, I kept up my marketing and became a one-person alternative to larger, high-overhead agencies (some of which have since folded).
Today's advice, and it'll be a very tough one, is to start brainstorming what your store will do if there's a significant downturn for the remainder of 2020 and if there's one that's longer than that.
For this, don't worry about where, how, or what caused the downtown. Only that sales have depressed enough to trigger your panic button (say down to 50% or 80% of sales).
Do you consolidate?
Switch manufacturers and vendors?
Do you double your advertising and marketing?
Cut back on paid channels in favor of lower-cost ones?
Start DIYing parts?
Brainstorm and build up a few plans in broad strokes. Give it contingencies and what-ifs.
Then if a "in case of emergency break glass" scenario happens, you'll be ready to tackle it head-on with thought out ideas.
And you might be the only one among your competitors still standing in the end.
One part of your strategy should be finding how to keep your current customers buying from you.
Using the segmenting and analysis in Repeat Customer Insights you can find out who would be the best customers to focus on and learn how to reach them at the best buying time.
Segment your customers automatically with RFM
Segmenting your customers has always been touted as a powerful marketing tool but many stores avoid it because it can be time-consuming.
Repeat Customer Insights will automatically segment your entire customer base for you based on the valuable data Shopify has already collected for you. Ranging from 5 to 30 to over 125+ different segments using RFM and other models, you can pick how much power you want to harness.