Have lots of downtime in your business? Use that time to build your skills and learn more about your customers

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected businesses in Rwanda in many ways. Disruptions due to lockdowns and other measures to prevent the spread of the virus have meant that many businesses are pausing operations or seeing a strong downturn in the number of customers. Business owners the SME Response Clinic spoke with shared that they (and their employees!) are facing more downtime between customers.

Use that time to build your skills and learn more about your customers!

  • Learn a new skill that will benefit your business. Many business owners are using this time to learn about social media marketing or customer relationship management. This will keep your mind occupied and give you new tools to reach customers now and when business picks back up again.
  • Think about new ways to market products or to deliver. As physical gatherings are discouraged, create social media accounts for your business. Showcase your products and request your friends and family to share them with their networks. Provide an option of delivery if you can.
  • Survey your customers. Business owners often forget to ask customers for feedback. Think of a few questions that would help you better plan your inventory or marketing campaigns and reach out to your customers to ask for answers. You can give them a call or ask a few questions via WhatsApp. Their feedback may give you new ideas or expose gaps in the product or service you are providing.
  • Research new potential products for your business. Reach out to your suppliers and see if they have a new product or service. Ask your customers what they might want when business picks back up again. Then, test these new ideas on your social media accounts or via phone with your network.

Engage your employees in these strategies as well – working together enhances teamwork and can provide a sense of progress despite the restrictions that may be in place. Share any tips or feedback you have with us here: musa.kacheche@consumercentrix.ch.