According to the latest statistics provided by the U.S. Small Business Administration, almost a half of the US GDP is from small businesses. In 2014 alone, small businesses contributed around 5.9 trillion dollars to our economic output.
But, when big brands with billions in revenue and hundreds of millions in marketing and advertising compete directly with hundreds of small companies with much smaller budgets, the smaller businesses struggle. More challenging than that, people only want to buy from the biggest and most established entities in a crisis (like we have now).
So, as a small business, how do you thrive and power through?
Your Economic Practices Should Write Stories
Times like this pandemic call for rebrands and innovation to spur an economic recovery.
So, how can a local clothing or book store stand out against Amazon? You might think that our solution to this problem is a relentless push toward video. But that’s where you’d be wrong.
Small businesses have to tell the best STORIES. Yes, video is a large part of storytelling. Over 80% of marketing professionals believe that it has a positive ROI. But small business storytelling is so much more.
Remember, what makes you unique will be what makes you memorable.
We’re going to ask you to “Bring out your inner Danny Devito.” Danny Devito stands out so much because of how he embraced himself fully and with no reservations.
Your story should work the same way.
Tell the best story in a timely way and – more than anything – be human. Do what many small businesses struggle to do – embrace your faults and reach out to others for support. You need to begin reinvesting and making stories and videos a central part of our local and global economic recovery plans.
Your Community Tells the Best Story of All
Because of Covid, sidewalks in Los Angeles are filled with small business owners outside giving haircuts, serving food, and more as business owners work on their communal economic recovery plans.
Online brands can do this too. Especially now, when googling a business to check their open status before leaving the house is more commonplace. To further spur your business recovery, you can also get a video up on another small business owner’s website. This strengthens the benefit that both of you offer as businesses to the communities.
A partnership is also great because the promotional budget you had to stand out has just doubled.
Then, use the marketing principle we call CORE: “Create Once, Repurpose Everywhere.” We extolled this principal even before COVID-19. Make your partnership and promote it everywhere you can.
Your Business Recovery Plan Should Be Humanitarian
People are putting themselves in harm’s way right now to combat the Coronovirus pandemic and help others. First responders, retail workers, hospital staff, and small business owners are just trying to make a difference and to survive.
You would be telling a bad story if you didn’t recognize the sacrifices that the people around you make daily. Maybe that means you advertise that you donate proceeds to hospital workers and first responders or that you deliver services to hospitals at a discounted rate. Again, partner with other businesses in your community if you can’t afford to support the people around you alone.
Not only does this lead to a cross-promotion, increasing your exposure, but you’re also genuinely doing good for your community.
Rip Media has been doing this for years as a cornerstone of our business. We donate either time or money every year to causes that we believe in to help them thrive. This year we joined with the LA Unified School District to film Covid testing centers so LA’s 250,000 students and their parents can more easily navigate re-entering schools this school year.
We’re even donating our time in this article – if you haven’t updated yourself in a while, please check out the latest news on Covid-19 and how you can prevent it.
Video Doesn’t Just Mean Making Ads
Video conferencing has revolutionized how we work from home. If you’re a small business owner, then chances are, you’ve begun to video conference with your clients instead of meeting with them one on one, and working from home has been encouraged.
That means that our first impressions have changed their form. We’ve adapted to this change by offering at-home filming kits that make your first impressions and group meetings as professional as they can possibly be.
You can also use video to create testimonials for your brand. It’s paramount to make a place where your customers can meet others like them, who trust your brand. We even have a kit for this situation that includes high-quality lighting, video, and audio equipment that you can safely mail to customers for testimonials. We’ve also put together a sample list of equipment that we use if you want to shop around for yourself.
Video marketing isn’t for a niche group of businesses anymore. It’s an essential part of existing in the current global economy. To read more about video making, business strategy, and other tips for your business recovery plan, check out our blog.