Small-Business Marketing Solutions: You Are the Change in Times of Crisis

During a global pandemic, are you leading your business with an open mind? Sue Dobbe-Leahy, of Dobbe Marketing, explores how to keep your marketing flexible.

Molly Ormsby assists Sue at Wear Did U Get That, a boutique in downtown Crystal Lake.

Illinois businesses are opening up again after weathering a pandemic that has changed our world. As changes in our society and global health affect our economy, business owners and leaders are rethinking everything.

Are you leading your business with an open mind?

Being open for business in this new reality requires being flexible to change – in the way business is run, people are employed, money is exchanged and commerce is delivered. Drastic changes have affected dining, shopping and entertainment, plus many more aspects of our daily lives.

Your customers are seeking leadership for hope, confidence and guidance. It’s challenging, trying to communicate quickly and accurately in a situation that has few historic comparisons. Yet, our local businesses have a voice through which they can convey confidence and hope. Business leaders set the tone by stepping in and taking action.

Over the past few months, we’ve seen many businesses give back to their communities by employing their expertise, goods and services. This is not just good public relations, it is service that relieves anxiety and promotes positive engagement.

Residents seek direction on how they can help others in need. Businesses are in a natural position to take the lead and mobilize resources.

Every individual has been affected by the pandemic. Drastic changes in routine, fear of illness, concern for others, frustration, loss of employment, lack of safety, and other issues need to be addressed. Enhanced mental health resources, access to mental health care virtually, and adjusted insurance coverage are needed.

History teaches that there will always be times of crisis. How we prepare for the next disaster will make the difference. As the pandemic continues to influence our global actions, each business and community must forge a strategic plan to prepare for the unexpected.

Crisis planning will not resolve all problems, yet the plan and process will provide you with more solutions when the need arises.

Ernest Hemingway observed, “The world breaks everyone, and afterward, some are stronger at the broken places.”

We must continue to strengthen those broken places in our businesses and communities. Working together we can rebuild, restore, resume and re-create by embracing the change that is upon us.

Susan Dobbe-Leahy is president of Dobbe Marketing & PR Inc. Founded in 1989, this brand strategy agency leads businesses, organizations and municipalities to build brand image awareness and communication.