When we first opened our doors many years ago, we thought people would line up to get in. After all, we were great photographers and thought that was enough.
Those hard lessons learned many years ago have served us well as we now understand that it will take work and a well thought out marketing approach to get cleints through the doors again after being closed for over two months.
NOW, IT'S TIME TO ROLL UP OUR SLEEVES, DO WHAT WE KNOW,
AND GET THE BALL ROLLING AGAIN.
The first thing we know it that we need to be PRO-ACTIVE, NOT RE-ACTIVE in our marketing and communication with our clients.
Let's define re-active versus pro-active.
Re-active is waiting on everyone else to do something and hoping for a positive result.
Pro-active is characterized by forward movement and actions taken to create desired results.
So, how do we become more Pro-Active, especially in this time we are in?
Here are four things we are doing during this time.
ONE: One of the first things we understood is that we need to tread lightly for awhile. Empathy and gently communicating is the approach we are taking right now. We are telling stories, posting images from our archives as well as sending private messages on Facebook to our cients just to check on them, even if we know they may not ever be back.
Along with that, we are selectively sending handwritten notes when appropriate and offering help when needed.
Be sensitive to your market and your clients. The time will come to start actively and more aggresively marketing again and you will know when that is.
TWO:Reciprocity or giving before expecting to receive is the theme of a marketing plan we are working on with our university hospital. For many years, we worked with the Kenturcky pediatric hospice to photograph children with life limiting or life ending illnesses along with their family...at no charge. We printed a black and white archival wall portrait, matted and framed, for their home. As the structure of hospice changed a few years ago, this program was stopped.
We just met with the University of Kentucky Children's hospital administrators to do the same thing for their patients. This is the concept of reciprocity. Rewards come back in many forms, but that is not the reason we do it. It is simply our way of giving back to our community.
THREE:We are making marketing a priority. Before the closure, we didn't have or take time, we were sporadic in our efforts and the results were not at potential. Now, we are reading or listening to audio books on marketing and attending as many Zoom teachings as we can. Learning must never stop!
FOUR: We updated our marketing materials and created bite-size videos to help our clients understand who we are and what we do as well as some new processes we are implementing. With this extra time, we wanted to make sure we were using it wisely and not wasting it.