It is good to see the response to last week’s article where we had discussed the first three ‘Cs’ to face and survive these challenging times. Let me reiterate them for benefits of all. It is all about conserving cash, looking at eliminating and reducing costs and communication to all stakeholders.
Now let us look at the fourth C. The fourth ‘C’ is customers. During these challenging times, one should reach out to all existing customers. In B2B business (business-to-business model), one can reach existing customers on a personal basis. This was done very well by Deepak Manik of Retail Detailz India Pvt. Ltd (was one the students of the author) who called every existing customer to enquire about their well-being as well as that of their families. This helped strengthen personal bonds. However, in B2C (business to customer) models such as personal communication may not be possible due to the high number of customers. In this case, one should come out with clear communication to all the consumers. If I may suggest here that using digital means of communication is the best cost-effective method to reach out to many customers. In all such cases, the communication should be based on the important 3S model (Safety, Security and Social Distancing). This is true for all sectors and especially true for certain sectors such as food, hospitality, health care sectors among others. Such communication will help reassure customers that their health and well- being is a priority. Here again, I wish to mention the name of Bharat of the famous Tewaris Sweets who has ensured that 3-S communication reaches out to all his customers via social media. In this context, one should always remember to collect data from willing customers as far as possible. In the case of Bharat, he could reach out to most of the patrons of his sweet shops as he had the customer data readily available. As it is truly said by Mukesh Ambani that data is the new oil for Reliance Industries. For most businesses today if they have a ready customer datab,ase which can be reached out this will help get them back to business soon. One can also reach out to customers whom we would have lost over a period of time. Let me explain it is always possible that over a period of time a business person may have lost customers due to service or communication issues. In such challenging times, just reaching out to enquire about their family’s wellbeing may re-establish old bonds and help revive business ties. As is said in case of a true businessperson it is tough times as these which help bring out one’s best to face adversities.
Menon is a business coach and has a youtube channel menonmantras where many videos are uploaded for benefit of the business community and employees.