Welcome to your COVID-19-free Wednesday folks.

I hope you all enjoyed your long weekend and managed to get out and show some more support to your locally-owned cafes, restaurants and shops. We’ve all been bolstered by the news this week that there are now almost zero active cases of coronavirus in NZ – what a huge relief and let’s hope that spells a further loosening of trading restrictions soon.  I’d like to build on this positive momentum by shining a spotlight on the opportunities we all have as business owners in a post-COVID-19 world, because, despite the doom and gloom around businesses closing and the impending recession, there’s no reason we can’t succeed.

So, let’s start with a success story we worked on last week that, quite frankly, staggered even us! A client of Grow Digital Marketing came to us wanting to grow her business. After looking into the data around her company and industry, we put together a campaign and launched it mid-May, while most businesses were still feeling conservative and acting accordingly. The result? More than $2 million in sales and a return on marketing investment of 10:1. But that’s not the most surprising element of this success story. This business is a local tourism business, supposedly one of NZ’s biggest lockdown casualties with little to look forward to for months. Or so they said.

This example, yet again, proves both the dangers of assumption and the power of data-led decision making. If a local tourism player can make $2 million in sales during Alert Level 2, there is a business for the taking in every single industry in NZ. You just have to take the right approach.

As ever, we are here to help and over the next two months, we plan to share more in-depth insights into how you can generate profitable cash flow as we come out the tail end of coronavirus alert levels.

Grab a coffee, we’re going to start today with some early morning maths…


People x Process = Performance

If you sit back and take a helicopter view of any business, you’ll find its growth and potential lies in its people and its processes. If you find a way to optimise both, you end up with a powerful equation for success: “People x Process = Performance”.

One real-life example of this has become so entrenched, it’s now a common catch-phrase; “Would you like fries with that?” Hey, if it’s good enough for McDonald’s, it’s good enough for us.

Consider this: A business that trains its people to upsell can generally expect a 3% lift in profit. A business that invests in an email remarketing process can expect to deliver a 5% increase in the number of opportunities to upsell. 3% (people) x 5% (process) = 15% profit performance increase.

We call the above the ‘invisible loss’ because until you start delving into these growth opportunities, these potential performance gains remain invisible. A strong example of this, which we have touched on recently, is the traditional artisans, like butchers, bakers and candlestick makers, who rely solely on physical points of sale. When businesses like these embrace the power of e-commerce, performance soars.


People Power

When it comes to optimising your people quotient, there’s a myriad of ways to unlock potential. You can upskill your existing team members, expand your team, reduce your team numbers, or re-prioritise what they do, but the best piece of advice I have ever received about people in business came from a leader I respect deeply, who once advised me “surround yourself with the right people, get them to do the right things for their reasons and then get out of their way.”

We are going to delve deeper into this in upcoming editions, but here is a taste test to whet your appetite: A client of mine in the medical industry was experiencing considerable ‘invisible losses’ because the practice receptionist wasn’t following up on re-bookings. The real underlying issue, of course, was the business owner, who had never addressed the performance issue, therefore silently condoned the poor practice. After an open and encouraging conversation about the duty of care the practice has for both the patient, as well as its own sustainability, revenue went up 5%, profit up 9% and patients are now reporting better quality experiences.  Win, win, win.


The art and science of growth

While the performance equation above is relatively simple science,  quality people coaching is much more of an art form, requiring an ability to observe, listen, offer feedback and inspire. We have a lot more to share with you on winning the hearts and minds of your people to help your business ‘survive and thrive’ the changes COVID-19 has forced in the business environment. We’ve also got practical advice on internal and externally-focused processes that can transform those invisible losses into visible growth.


Stay tuned and let’s get growing!