In the world of social distancing that is our new normal, Cindy Dalecki, owner of Marketing 2 Go has had to alter her interactions with clients and friends. She has over 25 years of marketing, advertising, sales, and public relations experience. Cindy is outgoing and very social by nature and her job demands it. We spoke to her to see how she is managing. She also provided tips on what you can do.
Ripple Coworking: Your business, Marketing 2 Go, requires you to be out, constantly meeting and talking with people. How have you adjusted your interactions with your clients and contacts?
Cindy: As you can imagine, there are few to no in-person interactions with clients right now. I’ve shot a video this past week (staying the appropriate 6 ft. apart of course), I’ll be taking a photo and another video this week, otherwise, every communication has been on the phone or electronic.
Ripple Coworking: What do you find works best for you?
Cindy: I’ve made a lot more phone calls for sure! Email and texting is quick and convenient and people can respond at their leisure.
Ripple Coworking: What is most challenging?
Cindy: Again, email and texting are quick and convenient, however, sometimes it takes multiple electronic communications to solve an issue or get a point across when it could have been done with a 30-second phone call. And being a ‘people person’, I enjoy meeting and chatting with customers and business associates on a daily basis. It’s challenging to get to know someone new online vs at an in-person networking event. I think you can find much more in common in a shorter period of time in-person vs online.
Ripple Coworking: What strategies can people use to continue to reach out to their clients?
Cindy: Phone calls are always best. They take more time of course (because people often want to talk about other things, which is fine), but look how much time you are saving by not going anywhere! Be sure to keep your company’s social media updated with what’s happening with your business – do you have alternative business hours, more online availability to shop or order – if so, your customers need to know. Email communication is a great tool as well. I tell business people all the time – start collecting your customer’s emails, even if you don’t know what you’re going to do with them right now….well, this is a perfect reason to have all of their emails.
Ripple Coworking: On a more personal question, you are one of the most positive outgoing people members of the Ripple community. Being around you, you just can’t help but feel good. How are you managing personally?
Cindy: Awe, thanks for asking. I think, all things considered, my family and I are managing well. It’s nice having all my ‘kids’ (they are 18 and 21-year-old ‘kids’) home (although there are so many more dishes, cooking, laundry, and well…mess!). My staff of four is already used to working remotely, however, it’s more challenging with kids out of school and home while you’re trying to work. We have one employee that came back from maternity leave this week after being off for six weeks. We had a virtual meeting today and told her that she had missed all the fun while she was on leave!
Ripple Coworking: You are also a person that likes to give hugs. How do you incorporate that same affection while social distancing?
Cindy: Whew, it’s hard for us ‘huggers’ for sure! I run into people I know at the grocery store (my big outing nearly every day) all the time and just want to greet them with a big hug of course, but I can’t. But a big smile can work just as well. And as silly as it seems, emojis are a great way to express yourself in the digital world – the heart emoji, LOL emoji, you get the idea. Also, memes and animojis have helped with expressing a variety of happy and excited emotions.
Ripple Coworking: What advice do you have for other people like yourself?
Cindy: Do things that make you happy every day. I walk the dog…a lot…get outside (with appropriate social distancing), work in the yard, ride a bike, kayak, paddleboard, you get the idea. Try to connect with positive people online and in Facebook groups. Take this time to get organized, make a plan, set goals, exercise, write, read, and spend time with loved ones (and your loved pets).
Ripple Coworking: Do you have any tools or services that you would recommend for other entrepreneurs that are in similar situations as yourself?
Cindy: Try to stay focused and organized. It’s so easy to get distracted when we get off a normal routine. If you are not used to working from home, read up on a few blogs that have tips from folks that have done it (successfully). Research the government loans and grants that are out and coming out. There are several programs now available to apply for immediate funds.
Ripple Coworking: What are you doing to interact with and stay connected to your team members?
Cindy: We just had a webinar today. We planned out April – of course that plan is written in sand not stone since none of us know what to expect yet. I also send them several text messages and emails each week as things come up, as they always do in our industry, and to keep them updated on the clients they manage as they are pivoting to help stay afloat during this time.