Updated: Jun 7
I have been kept away from my duties of maintaining my own blog, but I am back to tell you what has been keeping me even busier. As the pandemic abruptly swept us all off our feet and into our homes, many of us are in a panic mode and not sure what to do next. In my opinion, we are entering the age of virtual service and we should be excited and welcome this additional avenue of revenue for our businesses.
For the longest time, location and in-person customer interactions were key elements of any business. One unlocking a beauty salon at 10am, or another flying out to meet with a client in another state, we all know that these activities have tapered off or ceased altogether during this epidemic. Though these means to do business will return again someday, the rules of engagement have changed, and our business plans are in need of an update to reflect the times.
Initially, the push was too quickly, and in haste, notify and implement means to stay connected with our customer base. Restaurants announcing curb-side and delivery service, grocery stores announcing that they will stay open with conditions, and educational institutions offering their courses online only.
Sadly, most of us are not prepared for this course change, nor do we understand how this is all going to work out for everyone in the long-run. There have been few guidelines for doing business during a pandemic up until this point. Today, business is being redefined to the core. Though we may return to business as usual, it will never be the same again.
We Are ALL Virtual Service Pioneers
The first group of my clients to react to the pandemic were my coaches, trainers, keynote and motivational speakers. As they traditionally engage with an audience in good numbers where social distancing is practically impossible, within a matter of a few weeks, all their events were cancelled, leaving them essentially unemployed.
Despite this epic setback, some of them were on top of their game and immediately started offering their services online. For example, Linda Larsen has already immersed herself with virtual keynote speaking gigs that lead off virtual conferences and seminars.
Another example of someone taking charge of their virtual destiny would be John Graci of Graci Leadership Solutions, who will in May begin offering an 8-part series of live training seminars via his website.
Production note: I have really enjoyed setting up John's Wix website with all the tools they offer to sell tickets, subscriptions, memberships, and stream video on secured pages without much ado. I highly recommend this service to save time and money when employing tools to drive your virtual services at your site.
I'd say let's welcome the fact that we are entering this new age virtual services. Start developing and mature your virtual service delivery mechanism sooner than later. This will allow you to stay in business as the rest of the country partially shuts down.
If you have an idea of what you need to stay viable online, I can be of assistance to help you re-connect and stay connected with your client base – virtually! I hope that you can check back soon for these updates, but until then, please be safe and resilient (Thanks Eileen McDargh!).