If you own or you know someone who owns a small or medium sized business here’s a question for you, how ARE you? How are you doing? These last twelve months have been devastating for so many people, financially, mentally and physically. Have you asked yourself if you can keep going, or perhaps you have already stopped. For some businesses the pandemic has actually improved their prospects, online services or products related to health in particular are doing very well.
The question has to be, again, in 2021 how do you pivot your business to respond to the current situation and prepare for the potentially longer term issues we face in Mallorca. In the light of the slowness of many countries, including Spain, to get started on vaccinating their populations, will we see many visitors this year at all? Even if your business doesn’t directly rely upon the income generated from tourism and holiday homeowners, it will have an indirect effect on your turnover. There’s a multiplier effect, if you buy at a small ironmonger, that owner may hire a local accountant, while the employees may go to local restaurants and other nearby stores. The success of one business can steamroll through the economy. If the people aren’t here to spend the money, then it simply doesn’t happen.
What can you do for a business you love?
Our local businesses are a crucial aspect of our community. We don’t have to imagine a world where there are no bars or restaurants open, we are living it, but to keep these vital businesses going, we have to support them. With fewer people on the island the opportunity for sales is also reduced, so with our own reduced incomes we have to try to keep each other going.
1 Turn to Laura Stadler’s page for listings of restaurants which are offering takeaway and delivery services and please do use them. Avoid using apps to order takeaway, order directly then all of the money goes to the source. Shop local, don’t turn to the big online stores for your books and gadgets, find a local business and support them. It may take a couple of days to get your item if it isn’t in stock, but that order is vital to the health of the business.
2 Take to social media, find the accounts for your favourite local businesses and follow them, comment on their posts and share their posts on your own account. Invite your friends to like the accounts, this sort of effort is hugely appreciated by the businesses and doesn’t cost you a thing. Use Facebook groups such as https://www.facebook.com/groups/MajorcaMallorca who have regular advertising threads and post there about your experiences.
For example, I recently bought a coffee at a bakery in San Agustin, they have an Instagram account so I took a photo of my coffee (okay, yes, and my amazing cream bun, you’ve rumbled me) and posted it on my IG account and tagged the business. It took seconds and really helps spread awareness about the business. You can do the same, take a photo of something you have bought locally, post it on your own social media account and rave about it, the quality, the value for money, the service, whatever it is that you value, tell others.
3 Buy in advance. If you can afford it, then ask the business if they do gift vouchers. Can you buy a gift voucher now to be used when they are open again, or when you need it? Cash flow is crucial to small businesses, if every customer bought a 10€ gift voucher then perhaps the rent can get paid until there are busier times.
4 Offer your skills. If you’re an accountant, a lawyer, a banker, or a digital marketing specialist, to name just a few, local businesses may welcome your help. In the spirit of this please follow my business and we will be sharing ideas and strategies to help brands communicate online and in person. www.facebook.com/PhoenixMediaMallorca and www.instagram.com/phoenixmediamallorca/
5 And finally: “Practice Kindness”. Small business owners are under enormous, sometimes existential, pressure right now, so share emotional support when you can. Ask them how they are holding up. We are all so separate now, it’s important to restore our community, taking five minutes to chat can really help.