SMBs and Coronavirus: How to Cope With The Crisis?
We are not adding anything new by saying we are in a global crisis. And as a kind of threat, we can react to it in two directions. Fight or flight. In this case, it doesn’t look like we can escape it. So, in what way can we fight it?
On a personal level, step number one: isolation. Leave the homes only in critical situations. Hygiene, essentially hand washing. Follow the instructions of the competent authority and don’t get paranoid. On a work/professional level, those who can do so, home working.
And as for organizations, the call is to adapt. What worked yesterday, doesn’t work today. And this especially applies to those small and medium enterprises that do not pay due attention to all the potential of technology. Therefore, here are three steps for SMBs to use tools that allow them to mitigate the effects of the pandemic, as well as be better positioned for the day after.
1. A Facebook Business Page
The social network Facebook, not only offers the chance to have a personal page. The company pages are free and are designed for different types of businesses (face-to-face, virtual, brands, among others). In addition, they are public, so they have the advantage that Google can index them in its searches. This makes it easier for the public to find them. They have several development tools depending on the business objectives. An important part of them is that it allows easy communication with users – potential customers – of Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger. Finally, they have a very good statistics service, which helps to find customers interested in the product or service offered, by analyzing the actions that people perform on the page.
2. A Chatbot for Customer Support
A chatbot is a small computer program that can carry on a conversation. They use natural language processing as well as elements of artificial intelligence. They’re usually the first point of contact with customers for claims or general inquiries. They are increasingly common on social messaging platforms such as Facebook Messenger. They are then useful not only in terms of saving time and money – specially for SMBs – but, as in cases like the one we are living, they allow to replace people who cannot move to their workplaces.
3. A Virtual Assistance Service
A virtual assistant service is one that allows the regular tasks of the secretary to be carried out without his/her physical presence. By the use of technological tools, he/she carries out his/her specific functions, such as manages the agenda, appointments, contacts and the e-mail of the manager(s), answers the phone and provides general information, among others. As we said in the case of the chatbot, this service is suitable in cases where employees cannot reach the office.
These steps can be carried out by any SMBs in a relatively short time. In addition, they do not have great cost, so they are of big help in moments where the economy is virtually at a standstill. Again, to adapt is the call of the hour, to help us and to be able to help.