More than half of the year has passed, and unfortunately, it looks like the coronavirus pandemic will be sticking around for quite some time. Businesses are past the initial shock of the global economy grinding to a halt.
Now, companies are figuring out ways to stay afloat in the new normal. Here are some ideas for bridging cafe marketing and operations and adapting them to today’s realities.
1 – Constantly engage your stakeholders
You may have done this early on when states were entering lockdown for the first time. However, constant communication is vital. Always speak to your customers and employees about expectations, and adjust to each other’s needs as often as necessary.
Make it a point to update your social media page with changes to the menu or limitations to in-person service. Ask for feedback from your customers, and be sensitive to your employees’ needs. For instance, certain enhanced unemployment benefits might leave them in a better financial position if you furlough them instead of reducing their hours.
2 – Consider applying for government assistance
Prioritize business assistance; appropriations are on a first-come, first-served basis, and you might run out of funds. Seek help from your banker and accountant when poring over the details of funding.
In case funding runs out before you finish your application, you must still complete it. The Australian government might add more funding in the future, and if you submit your name in the meantime, you will be among the first to be served when assistance comes in.
3 – Ask if you can get rent relief on your mortgage
One of the most significant expenses for coffee shops is rent. If you have had to reduce hours or close your business, it could be challenging for you to meet your monthly payments.
Seek rent relief from your landlord or the bank in charge of your mortgage. Most will agree to defer your rent or outright forgive dues, provided you can submit proof of financial difficulty.
4 – Get creative with your menu and services
Put your cafe marketing skills to the test and see how you can adapt your offerings to the situation. Aside from switching to a drive-through and distribution service of your in-house dishes, you can offer takeout and deliveries of perishables like milk and bread.
Make sure you have it on your social media, website, and Google My Business listing that you are open and accepting orders. Remember to keep this area frequently updated; the local governments often change restrictions based on the number of cases in their cities, so your operations should reflect these accordingly.
You can also create programs that allow special discounts to frontliners. One way to do this is by offering programs to patrons via Appreci, allowing them to gift a cup of coffee every day to frontline or essential workers.
5 – Speak with policymakers and advocates
Small businesses should band together and support each other through challenging times like these. Financial recovery at the national level is only possible if you can hire or rehire employees and keep local economies afloat.
Speak with your local elected officials and inform them of your needs at this time. You can choose to work alone or to course your concerns through business groups and local chambers of commerce.
The pandemic has caused plenty of businesses to slow down, and have even been the reason for others folding up completely. Staying afloat in these times is tricky, but it is possible with constant effort, collaboration, and some creativity.
Inspire your customers and employees with digital gifts like what you would get at Appreci. Our cafe software allows you to show gratitude to a friend or loved one, all with a touch of a button. Register your cafe today, or get in touch for more details.