COVID-19 has changed virtually everything. No one expects the business world to return to the old days when this is over. Even now, as more Americans return slowly to work, the new normal is revealing itself.
Business owners across the country are asking what it means to pivot their businesses and thinking about what they are going to have to do differently. This is how the SBA’s SCORE team in Cape Cod answered that question:
“The concept was originally introduced by Eric Ries in The Lean Startup. It is a change in the business model, small or large. Jane Thompson, LLB, defines change as an act of moving a company from where it is now to where it wants or needs to be. Most times, pivoting references an event (the pandemic) that causes major disruption to your daily operations.”
Basically, to pivot means to make a change in the target market you serve or the way you serve an existing target market. It is usually a significant change that if poorly communicated can leave existing customers confused and new prospects uncertain of your dedication to the market.
What your business will look like when this is all over will depend upon many factors. The number of yesterday’s customers that are still with you in the Post-COVID economy will depend upon how well you communicate with them through your pivot.
From a communications standpoint, a pivot requires a complete overhaul of your marketing and public relations collateral. It may alter your communications strategy and require you to re-establish your executives as industry experts. It can render existing content on your website and social media profiles outdated, confusing or misleading.
A communications audit should be performed to include all of the company’s current outgoing communications to ensure that they align with the new marketing messaging.
A business pivot can be an effective strategy for remaining relevant in a fast-changing marketplace. With proper communications support, it can ensure continued success and even allow a firm to grow market share after a disruptive event like COVID-19.
Co-Founder and COO at Content Beacon + President at RGA Public Relations