Business Survival Lessons for COVID-19: Data Does Matter

Are you looking forward to opening your physical storefront — or are you hooked on e-commerce as a potential revenue stream? As the governments around the world including Malaysia brace for the reopening of their economies, businesses will need to re-strategise quickly to attract consumers again.

In my previous post, I spoke about the impact of decision-making based on “gut feeling” in a time of crisis. While semi-accurate assumptions may have served us well in the distant past, instincts can only take your business strategy so far when your competition is executing precise strategies to earn market share from your customers, online and offline.

You’ve moved online? So has your competition

Now that you’ve joined the online marketplace, do you know how aggressive are your competitors on the digital advertising space? What is your brand’s online share of voice in comparison to your top competitors? How are they positioning their product offerings to appeal to consumers right now? These are the questions you need answers to, to sharpen your business strategy.

The new normal is in effect

While many businesses will hope for the situation to return to “normal” after the lockdowns around the world are lifted, there are concerns that the “new normal” is already in effect.

As reported in The Edge Markets recently, business owner, Christopher de Mello does not expect things to go back to normal after the MCO is lifted and has rearranged his restaurant accordingly.

“We have scaled down our seating by 40% to 50% to allow for the proper distance between tables. This is so that people will be comfortable to come and dine but it will affect our revenues. That’s why an online presence is so important, not only for the duration of the MCO but after that.” 

With supply chains becoming more diversified, the rising growth of e-commerce especially in this time of crisis is changing the way businesses store their products in warehouse facilities. Businesses may need to diversify their line of products and consumer acquisition approaches to suit new trends—coming back to my point on data intelligence.

Data intelligence is your most important commodity; the silver bullet to your business survival. Forward-thinking leaders analyse data, interpret it, and ultimately, use those insights in their business strategies to adapt to the new normal.

Remember, it’s all about them

Change is happening constantly; how do consumers perceive your brand right now? Consumer behaviour, for better or worse, have already changed to a point of possibly no return to the pre-coronavirus days; they may hesitate to shop for apparel at stores, due to health concerns and consumers are likely to prioritise other essential products first such as groceries and medicines.

Making the most of existing data is key to creating relevant digital experiences for consumers, convert your regular website visitors into actual customers, gain a better understanding of what drives their purchasing behaviour and how to cultivate brand loyalty.

We are in this together

Data intelligence is your most important commodity especially in a time of crisis; your business survival depends on it. 

Grab CEO, Anthony Tan echoed a similar sentiment recently: “COVID-19 is an exceptionally difficult generational challenge. But while it looks dire, we are in better stead to face this crisis today than decades ago, because we have the tools and technology to help us find solutions.”

Making the most of the data at your fingertips is key to developing more timely, personalised, and effective digital campaigns. Looking at how the Malaysian retail landscape is evolving amidst the pandemic crisis, the team at Engage SEA is offering a complimentary consultation to analyse your digital brand health in real-time — and offer actionable insights to help you make critical decisions with confidence.

Curious to learn more? Drop me a message on LinkedIn and we’ll chat over a cup of tea, virtually (for now).

Previously published by Suchithra Krishnan on LinkedIn.

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