With the chaos of 2020 has come hesitation for many entrepreneurs and businesses. However, times of uncertainty should not be a reason to pause your goals. As Jim McKelvey, founder of Square said, “This year we have been forced to rethink what has always worked for us, which means it’s the perfect time for something new”.
What new product or service would benefit others during this time? How can your company shift to satisfy the new needs of your consumers?
With the unique sets of problems that have come with this year, the world needs entrepreneurs now more than ever. History has shown that downturns such as the Great Recession in 2008 or the other recessions often bring out the best in us. Just look at Uber and Airbnb in 2009, Slack in 2008, Microsoft in 1975, or Disney in 1929.
As CNN commentator Van Jones said, “We’re seeing a massive set of breakdowns that can lead to breakthroughs”.
The pain points in people’s lives are part of a new norm that can be addressed and turned into opportunities. By creating new solutions to new problems, entrepreneurs can create positive change that consumers will remember long after the pandemic. To find new ideas, take a look at people’s new problems or look at any market to find where it ends. Then go past it. There are many contactless business solutions that can address timely problems.
Even if your business is not creating a new product, you can still create something new. Think about how you can recreate your business. This can include your processes, operations, and strategy. COVID-19 has altered consumers’ needs and will create a lasting impact on how people do things. Businesses who adapt to and welcome challenges are the ones who can turn obstacles into opportunity.
Relaunching or Launching Products
With many of the norms we once held now broken, the COVID-19 era is the perfect time to introduce or reintroduce products or services. Many markets have been disrupted, creating new needs and new customers.
By shifting your positioning or improving features, a past product can be made new to customers while bringing in a new potential audience. Don’t be hesitant in rebranding a product your current customer group may be familiar with, as it shows that you are still innovating and improving on your designs. This can be the difference between you and a competitor. Additionally, relaunching increases customer awareness and extends the product life cycle of your product.
Similarly, you can use this new time to develop an idea you have always had. There are no wrong ideas when you are creating something new – keep your ear to the ground. What you hear can be the foundation of your next breakthrough product or service. With less businesses launching this year, now may be the opportune time to form your company. Launching now would mean less competition, more access to job applicants, and potentially lower prices for materials.
What will put you ahead of your competition in these times of need is empathy and listening. Listen to what people are asking for and what problems are arising. Show that you are listening by implementing consumer’s voices into your products. If your product can address one of their pain points it may be more powerful than you realize.
Customers remember brands that were allies in times of need. Jetblue gave 100,000 flights to healthcare workers, while Kraft Heinz Canada lent their social media platforms to promote small businesses, promoting their hashtag #sticktogether. Be there for your audience and you’ll create loyal customers and lasting relationships.
Ultimately, times of crisis are the breeding grounds for problem solvers and change makers. 2020 is the time for something new, and we want to help you rise to the challenge. If you need help getting your digital product or service off the ground, contact us for a free consultation at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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