18 June 2020
As part of the Women in Tech series, our International Advisor Valeria Leonardi spoke on a TechItalia online panel held on 11th June. The event connected around 70 people in business, focusing on resilience and how to engage people in times of crisis. Here’s what the panel had to say.
“It’s true that clients are the lifeblood of a business. But this is not just a challenge: it’s an opportunity to better engage with customers and transform the way we work with them.”
Paola focused on her work in keeping clients engaged during the pandemic. She discussed three key considerations that can really make the difference: business model, commercial and sales.
When considering your business model, there is a general understanding that each company is currently facing the same challenges and market uncertainty. It’s an opportunity to use empathy with clients, engineering the commercial offering to suit their needs and budget. The key is providing value for everybody involved, and adapting as the market continues to change. It’s also a chance to analyse your own business to identify strengths, weaknesses and opportunities for growth. Finally, when closing sales there will always be new ways to deliver value to clients. Essentially, that is what people will remember about you in the long term.
“It’s important to listen to what people have to say and find new ways that you can meet their needs and add value to what they are doing”
Valeria talked about the importance of listening to people – whether it’s employees or clients – to better understand their needs. Lifeed did this by opening up webinars (originally designed to be delivered solely to clients) to make them accessible to everyone, as well as organising engaging conferences with customers and thought leaders. They touched on key topics for the season, such as Emotional Intelligence, Remote Working and Personal/Professional Wellbeing. The results were strong, with some events hosting over 1,500 people online. These sessions allowed people to open up about their feelings, which helped fuel the development of the latest program offering, Lifeed Crisis. The price point for this program is also more flexible than the other Lifeed solutions, making it more affordable and easier to integrate quickly.
“It’s time to be authentic and return to your own values”
Lu elaborated on how communication has changed through the pandemic. She believes we are living in a very special moment in history, and that’s there’s a delicate balance to achieve through communications. People appreciate companies being able to quickly adapt and engage with their changing perceptions and situations. So how can we ensure our messaging is on point? Lu believes we have to be authentic and return to the core values of the business. This communication filters through into real life too – essentially it’s about walking the walk and leading by example.
“Demand for content has grown massively”
Paola highlighted how the YouTube community grew over 70% in March 2020. The platform growth was so massive that they had to reduce to resolution to avoid overwhelming the global network. This shows two important learnings:
1. Demand for content grew massively and even with the ease of lockdown will decrease but won’t be back at pre-pandemic rates for a while
2. Based on the size of the audience and levels of brand engagement, the Customer Acquisition Cost has never been so low for brands.
“It’s taken time to understand both customer and employee needs and how their perceptions might have changed through the crisis.”
Claudia looked at the ways that Oval Money had engaged their employees over lockdown. They believed it was important to keep team morale high. So, they found new ways to engage with each individual, perhaps in ways that the company hadn’t considered using previously. They decided to do this through holding more team activities, such as online yoga and fitness sessions. It meant that they were able to keep spirits high and avoid quarantine burnout. What’s more, they could help people to feel that they still have team support and rapport.
In terms of engaging customers, she shared that the company have had to listen carefully to what each person had to say. It’s important to act on their feedback, stay close to the community throughout times of uncertainty and create new and relevant content that allow customers to make the best use of resources during this time.
You can read more about TechItalia initiatives here.