When your business is centered around travel and the world suddenly comes to a standstill, your life and your business changes in an instant. That’s the situation Meagen Eisenberg and her team recently found themselves in.
Meagen is the CMO of TripActions, and when everything in the world started to shift, she was thrust into a new kind of action to find ways to address the situation and serve their customers and employees in the best ways possible.
After seeing travel come to a complete halt, here are some keys Meagen used for her company to adapt to a new reality.
CONSIDER YOUR CUSTOMERS AND WHAT THEY NEED IN THE MOMENT
Meagan’s team used their travel maps to see where the travelers were and where they were going as part of their duty-of-care.
“Our engineering team worked hard over the weekend to launch a product to hook into the CDC to bring real-live data in from countries on level, 1, 2, and 3 countries. Our travel managers who were running those route-based programs could quickly figure out where they needed to blacklist areas that our customers should not go.”
They quickly enabled the field to inform customers. They also trained their sales and marketing teams to handle their chat volume, which went up 700%. The team set a goal to resolve customer issues within a six-minute timeframe. Being able to remain efficient to meet customers’ needs is important.
CHECK YOUR PRODUCT MARKET “FIT” AND MESSAGE AROUND IT
Your messaging must be relevant. Prior to COVID19, TripActions slogan was, “The best experience in business travel”. Because this was no longer the case, the team had to audit and rewrite everything for marketing.
The marketing team rewrote their website, social handles, ads, and all outreach sequences, created a new sales enablement kit and checked all business travel continuity. The team was trained on traveler safety and controlled costs.
EXAMINE COST PRESERVATION
You have to have cash. The TripAction team executive leaders had to weigh several things. Here are some of the questions that had to be answered:
- How much cash do you have?
- What’s your burn rate?
- What’s your revenue?
- How long can you go and make the right calls?
In times like this, it means slashing down the budget, cutting back on headcount, and freezing headcount.
SUPPORT YOUR TEAM OF EMPLOYEES
In times of change, people need a sense of stability. Companies are now working remotely. Working parents are faced with homeschooling their children. It is important for companies to support their employees through change.
This requires companies to be in tune with what their employees are experiencing. Don’t run the risk of coming across as tone deaf or being seen as flippant. It’s got to be all-hands-on-deck to assure that everyone feels as safe and secure as possible.
TAP INTO YOUR COMMUNITY
This is keeping your ear to the street so to speak. What is it that people need right now? What kind of content can they learn from?
People want information, especially in times like this. Within 24 hours, Meagen’s team found a technology they could use and started a community. They posted it for the exchange of information. Being a place for people to go to for answers is important. This goes a long way with people to show people that you care about their needs. It can form long-lasting relationships.
“There’s a Latin proverb that says, ‘If there’s no wind, what do you do? You row.‘ So we had to row. We had to row with our product, we had to row with our messaging and we had to row with our sales enablement and with everything we had.”
To hear the full conversation, check out episode 178 of Marketing Trends and learn how Meagen and her team got into position to row.