Photo by Obi Onyeador on Unsplash
In 2020, Black business ownership rates dropped 41% between February and April. Various articles have been written on why this was the case or why Black businesses have been more vulnerable to the COVID-19 pandemic. The survival of Black-owned businesses remains important. In this article, we share a few ways you can ensure your business copes during (and after) this pandemic.
1. Take advantage of any funding opportunities
Systematic racism has traditionally created barriers that made it hard for our community to access funding for our businesses. This is a major reason why our businesses have also been highly affected by the pandemic. To stay afloat during this time, take advantage of any resources meant to help your business thrive. One of these resources is funding.
2. Leverage other resources
Funding is important for your business, but it's not the only resource you need to keep your doors open. Check out the Minority Supplier Development Council (MSDC) which connects minority-owned businesses to customers who need their products or services. This is also a good way to build brand awareness.
If you haven't done so already, consult your local chamber of commerce for information on any programs that are meant to assist businesses like yours.
3. Build your network
Networking with other businesses is important for the survival of your own business. You exchange ideas on how to improve operations. You help each other with tips on how to cope with any challenges. There are so many benefits of building your network.
Look for other businesses in your local area. Check out Da Village Network, a directory that helps you find various businesses in your area. Also, check out Support Black Owned which offers you both a website database and an app, as well as advertising options.
4. Consider introducing new services
COVID-19 has affected our operations. Many businesses have been forced to alter operations or think outside of the box. What other services can you offer using the same resources at your disposal?
5. Use social media to market your business
The pandemic pushed many of us onto the virtual world. A report by Statista showed that there was an increase in the amount of time spent on social media. This is an opportunity to use online platforms like Twitter and Instagram to build brand awareness and attract new customers while also keeping existing customers updated.
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