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Operating Virtually (As Best as Possible)

There are so many businesses that have been harmed by the pandemic and the response.

Hotels, for example. What are they going to do?

I’m sorry to use beer as an example but, for me, everything always comes back to beer. (I’m a giant beer snob if you didn’t know.)

The breweries in Ontario now all deliver to your door.

Moreover, as of last week, restaurants will deliver alcohol to your door with your food delivery. It’s now legal. In Ontario. (You could have asked me a few months ago if I thought I’d ever see alcohol delivery with food in Ontario in my lifetime and I would have bet you my life savings that would never happen.)

It’s likely not enough business to makeup for the lack of actual patrons in their premises, but it’s something.

The point is, some businesses are adapting and managing to at least stay afloat.

But it’s easy to see what the solution is for a brewery or a restaurant, it’s hard for other businesses. (Like hotels.)

One other restaurant example if you don’t mind:

I was just talking to someone who helps other business owners, like I do.

We were wondering aloud what businesses can do to try to succeed in this difficult time.

We talked about restaurants, specifically restaurants which have never collected the contact info of their more loyal customers.

What if you don’t have a newsletter right now? How do you ask for help?

One idea we had was a plea on social media: Say you’re a popular local restaurant and you’ve never had a newsletter because “why bother?” Well, now you need to let people know you’re open for delivery and you have gift cards. You could create social media posts offering to give the local community updates for your business if only they provide their email addresses. Suddenly you have a newsletter and a way of engaging your customers.

As my colleague put it: the best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago, the 2nd best time to plant a tree is now.

It’s really hard right now. But there are likely some solutions out there to at least mitigate the damage.

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