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Six Strategies to Strengthen Your Business during COVID-19

Filed Under:
Publication Number: P3444
View as PDF: P3444.pdf

COVID-19 has changed our daily lives. During this time, business leaders need to continue moving their businesses forward with planning and execution of plans to manage employees, cash flow, online sales, and more. The biggest mistake to avoid right now is standing still. Businesses need resources to adapt and create a new plan.

In an effort to help businesses survive and thrive during COVID-19, here are six strategies that can strengthen your business. Mississippi State University Extension faculty members provided an overview of these strategies using a Zoom conference call recently. You can find a link to the presentations below. Also, each faculty member provided valuable resource links that can help your business through COVID-19. Feel free to reach out to any or all of these specialists for more assistance.

The Zoom Webinar

If you want to watch each presentation listed below, please visit http://extension.msstate.edu/six-strategies-strengthen-your-business-during-covid-19. What follows is a listing of each faculty member, the topic they presented, and resource links that can help your business during COVID-19.

  • Strategy 1: Create or Improve Your Business Website
  • Strategy 2: Boosting Your Social Media Engagement
  • Strategy 3: Turning Your Website into a Sales Machine
  • Strategy 4: Adapting Business Strategies during COVID-19
  • Strategy 5: How to Avoid Three Financial Mistakes during COVID-19
  • Strategy 6: Small Business Administration Resources

The COVID-19 Toolkit for Businesses

Strategy 1: Create or Improve Your Business Website

Andy Collins

Extension Instructor
Center for Technology Outreach
Mississippi State University Extension Service
andy.collins@msstate.edu
(228) 388-4710

Resource Links

Build a Website with Wix

https://mstate-my.sharepoint.com/:f:/g/personal/pac47_msstate_edu/Ep_0St6IrxdHuP4WlkF-RmkBhDOInS856-6FyH0VDbGrAA?e=H9xVLR

Mobile Friendliness Test

https://search.google.com/test/mobile-friendly

Page Speed Test

https://developers.google.com/speed/pagespeed/insights/

Keyword Planner

https://ads.google.com/home/tools/keyword-planner/

Search Engine Optimization Guide

https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/7451184?hl=en

Strategy 2: Boosting Your Social Media Engagement

Lauren-Colby Nickels

Extension Instructor
Center for Technology Outreach
Mississippi State University Extension Service
laurencolby.nickels@msstate.edu

Resource Links

5 Ways to Grow Your Local Foods Business with Facebook

http://extension.msstate.edu/publications/5-ways-grow-your-local-foods-business-facebook

Helpful Social Media Toolkit from the North Carolina Dept of Health and Human Services

https://www.ncdhhs.gov/divisions/public-health/covid19/materials-and-resources

50 Must-Have Remote Working Tools and Apps

https://www.socialmediatoday.com/news/50-must-have-remote-working-tools-and-apps/575069/

Assistance with Ads

https://www.facebook.com/business/ads-guide

Crafting Creative Content

https://www.facebook.com/business/inspiration

MSU Extension COVID-19 Information

http://extension.msstate.edu/food-and-health/health/coronavirus

Strategy 3: Turning Your Website into a Sales Machine

James Barnes, PhD

Associate Professor and Extension Economist
Department of Agricultural Economics
Mississippi State University Extension Service
james.barnes@msstate.edu

Resource Links

Schedule a Free Website Review

https://brickstoclicks.extension.msstate.edu/

How to Build a Website That Sells

https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/how-to-build-a-website-that-sells/id1499143578?i=1000468537847

3 Website Mistakes Your Business Should Avoid (Complete video)

https://brickstoclicks.extension.msstate.edu/videos

Free Tool to Pivot Your Marketing Message During Covid-19

https://www.mystorybrand.com/

Strategy 4: Adapting Business Strategies during COVID-19

Rachael Carter, PhD

Extension Economist
Center for Government and Community Development
Mississippi State University Extension Service
rdm1@msstate.edu

Resource Links

NAICS Code Look Up

https://www.naics.com/search/

Disaster Loan Applications

https://www.sba.gov/page/disaster-loan-applications

Paycheck Protection Program

https://www.sba.gov/funding-programs/loans/paycheck-protection-program

Guide for Home-Based Business

http://srdc.msstate.edu/cashing/

Developing a Marketing Plan

http://extension.msstate.edu/publications/growing-your-brand-developing-marketing-plan-workbook

Rural Tourism Toolbox

https://gcd.extension.msstate.edu/educational-programs/community-development/tourism/rural-tourism-toolbox

Strategy 5: How to Avoid Three Financial Mistakes during COVID-19

Becky Smith, PhD, FFC®

Director, MSU Extension Center for Economic Education and Financial Literacy
State Family Financial Management Specialist
Assistant Extension Professor and Extension Economist
Department of Agricultural Economics
Mississippi State University Extension Service
becky.smith@msstate.edu

Resource Links

Managing Personal Finances during COVID-19

http://extension.msstate.edu/content/managing-personal-finances-during-covid-19

Managing Stress and Anxiety

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prepare/managing-stress-anxiety.html

Protect Yourself Financially from Coronavirus

https://www.consumerfinance.gov/about-us/blog/protect-yourself-financially-from-impact-of-coronavirus/

Learn about Investing

https://www.finra.org/investors#/

https://www.saveandinvest.org/

https://www.smartaboutmoney.org/Courses/My-Retirement-Plan

Fee-Only Financial Advisors

https://www.napfa.org/find-an-advisor

National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC)

https://www.nfcc.org/about-us/

Strategy 6: Small Business Administration Resources for COVID-19

Hamp Beatty

Extension Associate III
Extension Center for Government and Community Development
Mississippi State University Extension Service
h.beatty@msstate.edu

Resource Links

COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan Application

https://covid19relief.sba.gov/#/

Small Business Administration e-Newsletter Sign-up

https://www.sba.gov/updates

U.S. Department of the Treasury Assistance for Small Businesses

https://home.treasury.gov/policy-issues/top-priorities/cares-act/assistance-for-small-businesses

Conclusion

COVID-19 will end at some point. The economy will recover at some point, too. In the meantime, businesses that continue moving forward will be the ones that prosper during and after COVID-19. Remember this: After the 2008 recession, many successful companies emerged. Here is a short list of some successful companies that launched after the 2008 recession (Conklin, 2020):

  • WhatsApp
  • Venmo
  • Groupon
  • Instagram
  • Uber
  • Pinterest
  • Slack

Keep your business moving forward by adapting to the changing circumstances of COVID-19. Please contact the Extension faculty members listed here to help your business continue to move forward during this crisis.

References

Conklin, A. (2020, March 29). 10 Successful Startups Founded During 2008 Great Recession. Available at: https://www.foxbusiness.com/markets/startups-great-recession.

The Mississippi State University Extension Service is working to ensure all web content is accessible to all users. If you need assistance accessing any of our content, please email the webteam or call 662-325-2262.

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Authors

Portrait of Dr. James Newton Barnes
Associate Extension Professor
Portrait of Mr. Hamp Beatty
Extension Associate III
Municipal Public Policy Small Business Development
Portrait of Dr. Rachael Carter
Extension Instructor
Community Development, Tourism, Economics and Natural Resource Policy
Portrait of Ms. LC Nickels
Extension Instructor
e-Commerce, Cyber Security, Digital Outreach & Technology
Portrait of Mr. Andy Collins
Intermittent Worker
Portrait of Dr. Rebecca Campbell Smith
Assistant Extension Professor

Your Extension Experts

Portrait of Mr. Tom Ball
Extension Associate III
Portrait of Dr. David Buys
Associate Professor
State Health Specialist
Portrait of Dr. Courtney Crist
Assistant Extension Professor
Food Safety, Food Science, Food Processing
Portrait of Dr. Will Evans, Jr.
Professor and Head
Public health education, health promotion
Portrait of Ms. Anne Howard Hilbun-Benoit
Extension Instructor
Portrait of Dr. Rebecca Campbell Smith
Assistant Extension Professor

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