Pamela Barba grew up among small business owners whose biggest lessons learned came from pivoting in smart ways.
“I was born into a small business family in Ecuador so my career started as a kid who got to see the ins and outs of owning a thriving, established business,” shares Barba. “I also experienced what it was like to start again. When I was ten years old, my family lost everything and we immigrated to the United States. That’s when I got to see what starting a business was like firsthand. Growing up, our dinner table was a place for business and strategy.”
Now as a brand strategist Barba helps other creative and business owners take their ideas and turn them into successful businesses, again and again.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Barba has been honed in on helping her clients take the essence of their businesses and update it to meet the circumstances at hand.
“Building a business is 90% how you show up each day including how you think,” explains Barba. “My clients learn to connect with their values and search for ease. They learn how to find their right answers, all I do is lead them back to themselves.”
Below Barba shares 5 tips that small-business owners should consider as they work to pivot in an organic and relevant way.
- Make it easy for people to buy from you
“That means having a clear positioning statement on all your social accounts and website,” explains Barba. “Here’s a formula for ease: I help (this audience) to (achieve this result) by (what you do). Then make it easy for people to buy from you by having a link where they can learn more and purchase in plain sight. We often assume people know who we are and what we offer, but they don’t.”
- Solve for the problems your clients, or community, may have right now
Instead of focusing on the problem you were solving before the pandemic, figure out the problem that your business can solve within the context of the pandemic.
“I saw a cleaning company in my neighborhood offering ‘front porch cleanings’ since most of my neighbors hang out on their front porch,” shares Barba. “I’ve seen restaurants turning into a pantry where you can buy local produce. This is the time to innovate, to think of an idea and test it in the simplest way possible. People care about you, and your business make it easy for them to support you, and for them to be supported.”
- Figure out the “why” behind community building online for your company
If your strategy includes building an online community, make sure you’re not just doing it to check a box, instead focus on how you provide value to your community virtually and if it’s relevant.
“The main goal of posting online is to build trust with your audience,” shares Barba. “With each post, each email, you are creating a relationship with your people. Honor their time, their feelings, and give them content that adds value to their lives right now. The content you put out should educate, entertain or inspire…Don’t lose their attention by promoting yourself all the time.”
- Add in time to focus on your mental health
“Take care of your mental health,” encourages Barba. “Mental health is not acknowledged often in our culture and things are really hard right now so the first step is to take care of yourself. Ask yourself, ‘What is the tiniest way I can take care of my mental health today?’”
- Barba adds
“Growing up in a small business family, I was taught that if the business was well then the family would be well. As an adult, I’ve learned we actually had it backward. If you are well, your business has the opportunity to be well.”