Never Let a Good Crisis Go To Waste
I am fond of an old saying that goes like, “Never let a good crisis go to waste.” Part of the reason I like it is it points out that even something as grim as the COVID-19 Pandemic has a silver lining. In this case, it presents an opportunity to reimagine what you do with customers and take advantage of the environment of change that the “new normal” in business will offer.
This episode of The Intuitive Customer explores how organizations respond to the crisis and which ones will be the most successful. There are similarities across industries in how business is handling the changes, some more successfully than others. Also, customers are in a different place than they were at the start of 2020 as well. Here are a few of the key takeaways from what we observe:
- There are three ways organizations have responded to our current economic climate:
- Reacting: They have changed but believe the changes are only temporary until we return to normal.
- Responding: They have made changes they intend to continue in the short-term, meaning for at least a year or so.
- Reimagining: They see the advantage of the disruption of business-as-usual and are using it to pull forward plans they were delaying.
- Loss Aversion is at play, also. Businesses are in a loss mindset, which can drive unusually risky behavior. In other words, things are bad, so some companies are willing to try something they otherwise wouldn’t be able or ready to try.
- Different places have different experiences. Sweden didn’t shut down; the UK did. The state of Georgia opened in April and California in June. People have had varying degrees of disruption to their former daily lives and will respond accordingly.
- The Kubler-Ross stages of grief model is affecting customer behavior. Where your customers are in the five stages of grief—denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance—influences how they feel today. Someone who has accepted the changes will behave differently than someone who denies that the pandemic is real.
- There is likely going to be a second wave. Without a vaccine, people are likely in for another wave of “stay-at-home” orders in the fall. Will you be prepared?
Knowing that the crisis does present opportunity, we have been advising our clients to do the following as they re-open:
- Interpret new customer behavior. Can you observe customer behavior and the emotions that influence them to act that way?
- Identify the accelerants that are in your marketplace. What did the pandemic do to change the market in your industry, and can you capitalize on it? (If you don’t know, you can find out with research.)
- Determine if there is a further segmentation. Are there new market segments or customer segmentations you can make based on your customers’ experiences geographically or emotionally?
- Review your strategy. Do you have long-term plans that you can pull forward to the short-term? Do you have a plan if there is a second wave of infections?
- Redesign your Journey Maps. Have you introduced new nudges in your customer process that address the emotional needs people have in the “new normal?”
- Train employees in managing emotional experiences. What have you done to get your customer-facing team ready to handle customers’ emotional experience?
To discuss this further, contact us at www.BeyondPhilosophy.com.
About Beyond Philosophy:
Beyond Philosophy helps organizations unlock growth by discovering customers’ hidden, unmet needs that drive value ($). We then capitalize on this by improving your customer experience to meet these needs, thereby retaining and acquiring new customers across the market.