How businesses are surviving the MCO

Apr 28, 2020

The year is 2020 and everyone is in their homes, growing and cooking their own food, teenagers are spending more time than ever at home, the malls are closed and there are hardly any cars on the streets. It definitely suits the opening scene of a Stephen King dystopian novel, doesn’t it? 

But this is 2020. No flying cars and the world is fighting over toilet paper. Who would’ve thought. 

When the coronavirus washed up on the shores of countries around the world, mankind had no idea what had just hit them. Fast forward three months later, almost every country in the world has their citizens in some sort of lockdown. From a fast-moving, ultra-hyped society to a quiet and sleepy town overnight. That escalated way too quickly.

Wedding plans had to be canceled. Travel trips refunded. Conferences postponed indefinitely. Any semblance of a social gathering had to be called off.

It’s day 30-something of the Movement Control Order (MCO) and we’re finding ourselves in such unprecedented times. But good news is, humans are great adaptors. Well, those who initiate something have the upper hand, of course. Survival of the fittest. 
The world as we know it or knew it was run on consumerism. We’re either buyers demanding, or sellers supplying. Either way, we’re fully reliant on businesses. So how are businesses surviving the MCO? Let’s take a look:

1. Utilising online communication apps to maintain in contact with employees and clients.

You mean all those long hours of deliberating and going back and forth could have been an email or a 45-minute Zoom call? You don’t say… 

From clocking in and out of work for employees to presenting proposals and closing-in deals with clients, everything’s possible online. Even daily work has fully shifted to Google docs, WhatsApp, Telegram and other project management apps.

2. Going digital with a more active online presence.

Remember that one guy who always refused to spend on ads? Let’s just say he’s about to switch sides. So kudos to those who are now getting exactly why they need to digitise their brands. It’s the only way forward!

Brands are now flooding Instagram, Facebook, getting their websites up and even advertising on TikTok! Because they realise that no digital presence = no audience = no customers

It’s that simple.

3. Offering incentives and discounts to stay relevant in the market

Now that everyone’s figured out how to get themselves online, it’s a busy and saturated platform full of competitors, to say the least. How does one stand out? By offering crazy discounts and promotions, leveraging on the MCO period is how! If Malaysia can make 11:11 a massive date for sales, any occasion now can be made special, even a restricted movement government order caused by a pandemic. 

4. Deliveries, even more than ever

Until we figure out the potion for teleportation, deliveries will have to do for now. Cars out, motorcycles in. Delivery guys are on the road transporting everything from raw fish to a pack of dishwashing detergent. Businesses now have no choice but to get even their smallest of sales to the customer’s front door. And customers are willing to pay for it! Worried it might sound too distasteful? That’s where you need to invest in a copywriter.

5. Partnering up with charities

With the MCO in place, not everyone is stricken with boredom. It’s a sad reality that many are actually being laid off from their jobs and are finding it extra difficult to provide for their families. Hence why many charities are crowdfunding for donations to help the hard-hit. With Malaysia’s ability to make almost anything viral, this is probably one that deserves it the most. 

We noticed that a smart business move that is slowly gaining popularity is partnering up with a charitable body or setting up an individual fund themselves. Unleashing one’s philanthropic side often easily wins customers’ hearts who want to help the needy as well as buy from the business at the same time. It’s a win-win situation really. 

6. Upgrading and improving their e-commerce platforms

A good customer service and user experience can make a lasting impact. If a user is about to checkout their cart and the site crashes on them, it’s highly unlikely that they will return. Lately businesses are serious about looking for web development services that not only includes building a great website with a smooth UI (user interface) and UX (user experience), but also one that can improve and maintain the site every so often to keep up with the times. 

All in all, with all the lockdown challenges aside, it’s actually opening up a myriad of opportunities for growth. The MCO is pushing businesses to innovate and take drastic measures in order to not only survive but thrive in the 21st century and in uncharted waters such as this one. 

And lucky for IT and Technology companies, it’s our time to shine! The world is finally taking on industry 4.0 by the reigns and more serious consideration is given to tech solutions. As it should.