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401.831.6123 info@jhcom.net 111 Wayland Avenue | Providence, RI 02906

Marketing in the COVID Era

Steps you can take to continue to build strong relationships with your clients

How do you market your services in an atmosphere of social distancing, in which personal touch is so essential to what you do best? For many of us in the service business, our business is not transactional but instead is based on relationships. Our major differentiator is the invaluable experience we bring to our clients and the enduring bonds we establish with our communities. 

Now that most of our contacts today are through Zoom or other virtual meeting platforms, what can we do to continue to make better connections with our clients and prospects? 

Tell your story in advance, and save yourself some time

For many businesses faced with interviews and Zoom calls, why not create and use a video to tell your story?  In addition to saving some time and allowing you to get right to the point in your interview, you also will ensure consistency in your messaging. You can provide all those standard items, like how long you have been in your position, when your agency was founded, and what your areas of specialties are. This video can be sent in advance of your Zoom call to provide background to the person you will be meeting with to address all those introductory items. This video also can be attached to your social media profiles and on the bio page of your website.

Showcase your expertise in words and video

You’re an expert. So now it’s time to illustrate just how much you know. Write about it in a blog and record yourself, turning your blog into a vlog. People want to hear from you and learn about your expertise. You have a captive audience who is at home more and in front of their computers, so share with them what you know about your business. To develop your own blog, you can write an article on LinkedIn and then share it with your network or establish a simple WordPress blog and integrate it with your website. To do your own vlog, you just need a selfie stand, simple microphone, and light to rig your iPhone or Android phone camera. You can use simple editing software to edit your video and upload it to your Facebook or your own YouTube channel.

Help your clients tell their stories 

We are all in this together, and anything you can do to help get the word out about your clients will be appreciated. Once you master your own blogging and vlogging, why not extend it to your clients? You can start a monthly column about local clients who are making a difference and what they are doing to navigate through these trying times. Just promote it through your social channels to drive people back to your blog and website. You may just inspire someone else to make a difference. You also can interview your clients through Zoom calls and easily record their responses as well as your questions. You can use simple editing software and apps to edit your own spots.  

You’re just tapping your potential with your website

When was the last time you read your website content or updated the pictures? First, make sure you are using copyrighted photos and that they haven’t been lifted from the Internet. There is software that scans websites to find violators for lawsuits. In addition, make sure your website is American Disabilities Act compliant with photos and videos properly tagged with names and descriptions. 

Once you’ve taken care of your website, you can make it a more effective communications tool. House all your videos on your website and build up an archive of both videos and articles; this will make your website a central repository of information. You can also feature a “Community” or “Resources” page that features

client profiles, services, discounts, and offers.  What better way to facilitate business among the community than a website that promotes the goods and services of the local businesses you represent.

If we focus on doing more business locally and utilizing our local contacts, we may just help each other out a little more during these hard times. 

John Houle is the president of JH Communications and Main St. media. He can be reached at 401.831.6123 or at john@jhcom.net

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