It really is an easy answer but a hard one to say out loud. You can’t market your way out of it.
It’s not that there is going to be message that you can say or a Facebook post that you can write or videos that you can distribute on multiple channels. It’s that EVERYONE is going to be marketing coming out of this. Even more than there were before in a competitive, but good, marketplace.
So what do we do coming out of this? Service our way out of it and shout it from the roof tops.
And when I say service I don’t mean making sure that the customer gets what gets what she wants in the right fabric at the right price. All of those factors come with retailing in pre and post COVID19. When I say service I mean how are we going to communicate with the customer before during and after the sale? How are we going to make sure that the product that she wanted to get get there on time even though we know most the time we have no control over that? How are we going to ensure that we offer a safe and comfortable environment not only for our customers but also for people that are on the front line for making sure that the customers are taken care of?
As we sit here in this time of quiet, yes a scary time of quiet, we are pressed as business owners to determine how we come out of this.
Answering the above questions in our way as retailers will dictate how we come out of this. This is a scary time in the history of this industry and in the history of retail in general. However I believe that there is an opportunity bigger than any of us could’ve ever imagined. We have been given an opportunity to rewrite our path as a retailer, manufacturer, supplier or advertiser. What we have always wanted to do, we now can do it because time with nothing gave us the opportunity to build something.
In these coming months the consumer will ultimately dictate who we become and how we do it. Let’s hope that dictation comes as a result of the plans and practices that we put in place now to be able to be the vessel that she wants to shop with in the future.