It was not long ago that Paul Esch reached out to me on LinkedIn and posed this business question: “What opportunities are you seeing now?” Now meaning during quarantine and social distancing due to COVID-19.
I was quick to answer.
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1. Television advertising. I have clients with ongoing television advertising campaigns in different parts of the country. One of them asked me “Can you look and see if there are any remnant advertising offers right now?” Remnant advertising is filler advertising that you can get at a reduced price. This can be customary in print, radio, and television advertising.
I reached out to our sales reps and posed the question and, yes, my client rightly guessed that some businesses were pulling their advertising. In receiving the offers and new statistics two things quickly became clear: pricing was down marginally but viewership was up- as high as 300% up. This means that, for virtually the same price or lower, you get three times as many views.
For my client’s business that offers a free phone consultation on the ads, this is a definite opportunity.
2. People are responding on LinkedIn. Another client of mine is a corporate recruiter. She had taken some time off and wanted to reconnect with c-suite executives, some from Fortune 500 companies. I extracted all of her contacts from her email and LinkedIn and downloaded them into a spreadsheet and she selected thirty-five a week to reach out to make quick phone meetings with. We did this via LinkedIn Messaging. The results were staggering- up to 25% of those reached out to went to her calendar and entered their information.
It makes sense, though- right? Many are working virtually with potential limitations on what they can do. Many of us, me included, are taking care of maintenance, clean up, and other tasks that normally fall from the wayside. And we are hungry to work. So, while it might have not seemed like a high priority before to pay attention to things like LinkedIn, it is now.
3. Snail mail. In quarantine from my business colleagues, friends, and family- phone calls weren’t enough of a connection suddenly. Besides my normal follow up business emails, I started to mail out greeting cards through a company called Send Out Cards. I already had an account but hadn’t really done much with it since the holidays. And now was the time to shine.
The company was savvy enough to create cards for quarantine and social distancing- even ones with word searches! What makes these cards truly unique, however, is that I can customize the images using their intuitive templates. I use my professional headshots and logos for my business greeting cards and fun informal photos for cards to my friends and family. One of the folks that I had a business meeting with recently mentioned that her dog died. I asked for a photo of her dog and then sent her a keepsake card entitled “This isn’t a card” and the inside said, “it’s a hug” with the photo and personalized message that I typed in. Then I entered in the recipient information and hit send. The company printed, stamped, and mailed the card. Done. A few days later I received a thank you from the dog owner. She was very touched by the card.
Now, for most of my other business greeting cards, I use the pictured card and have a list of my services on the inside cover, a personalized note, and my logo and contact information on the back. All in custom fonts. They really make an impression. And my mom really loves the personal cards that I send to her, too.
These are three business opportunities that I see right now. What ones are YOU seeing? Post them in the comments.