The holidays hit hard and go by fast. These Cyber Monday and Black Friday tips will help you prepare for the worst case scenario: a crisis of any kind during your sale.
The ugly truth about any big campaign is that things will go wrong. It’s true. No matter how well you plan, something will happen. The crisis level might be low, but something will happen.
What if that crisis threatens to bring down your reputation, ruin your Black Friday sale, or something else potentially catastrophic for your business?
We have an answer: Think like a well-trained Navy SEAL. Or, at least how I think a well-trained Navy SEAL would think.
You need to have a systematic and objective mindset in a time of potential panic.
Don’t Panic When Something Goes Wrong with Black Friday
It’s easy to freak out when you aren’t prepared for the rush on the day of Black Friday. It’s even worse when your website goes down because your Cyber Monday sale was much more popular than you thought…
The key is not to panic. Once you start panicking, you can’t think clearly. So take a deep breath and then continue.
Assess Your Situation and Form a Plan
After you’ve had a nice little breather, take note of everything. What’s going well? What’s not working? What resources do you have? What are all the facts?
Organize this information in your mind. And, keep your emotions out of it.
Then, start making a plan to use that information. Your employee that didn’t show up can get fired later. For now you have to figure out how to get someone else in there. Do you have backup employees on call? Phone a friend? Jump in and help out?
- If your website is having trouble handling the traffic, can you get on a call with your hosting company and make upgrades/improvements to your hosting plan for more volume and bandwidth?
- If your sale landing page is confusing your customers, do you have someone in-house or your web designer/developer standing by to make changes?
Create your plan before you start executing it. Think all the way through it, imagining every possible outcome.
Don’t think, just act. Well, think, but don’t get too bogged down with details. You already explored all outcomes thoroughly. If you didn’t, then things are going to go wrong. When they do, go back to the first step.
Assess The Results After Cyber Monday
Now that you’ve fixed the situation and gotten through the rest of your Black Friday madness, you can address it retrospectively. Ask these questions:
- What went wrong?
- How can we prevent that from happening in the future?
- Were any online reviews posted about it?
If the answer to the last one is yes, then you need to also respond publicly to the review(s). Afterwards, it wouldn’t hurt to embed the review and put it on your website with a longer response. In fact, bad reviews can turn into positive tools for your company.
Use transparency and show your customers that you’re human and that you’re trying really hard to improve. Let the world know how much you value their candid feedback as well as how seriously you take it.
Then pat yourself on the back because you made it. You got through Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday. Now, you just need to ask yourself: What’s my business doing to give back to the community on Giving Tuesday?