co Customer Connections Are Key in Economically Trying Times |

This week, President Obama unveiled a $730 million dollar stimulus package aimed at aiding small businesses. Good news. Small businesses are the backbone of communities. The key is to stay afloat until the rescue boats arrive…

“We know that small businesses are the engine of growth in the economy,” stated Christina Romer, chair of the White House Council of Economic Advisers. “We absolutely want to do things to help them.”

In the past ten years, small businesses have made up close to 70 percent of all new job growth, and it’s believed that small businesses will be what drives the recovery forward.

But staying afloat isn’t just about getting funds. It’s also about community involvement and customer connection. So if you haven’t sent out an e-newsletter lately, crack your knuckles and start typing.

Have you ever avoided calling a friend because were afraid to heard bad news? It’s a natural reaction, and many of your customers might not be calling on you because they’re afraid you’ve closed shop.

Have you ever been at a party and saw a group of people chatting and laughing–and found yourself drawn to them? Everybody wants to be around successful people and successful businesses. Maybe we all secretly hope it will rub off on us.

That’s why it’s time to focus on presenting your business in its best light. Feature a dedicated customer in that e-newsletter or on your website. Offer free or discounted upgrades. Generate business by featuring the products and services you have. Thank them for their past business and assure them you’re here to stay.

Are you techs sitting around the office with nothing to do? How about some courtesy service calls. Good customers will recommend you to new customers–if they’re impressed with your professionalism.

Taken any pictures lately? Get out your digital camera and take a few shots of the office, of your product line, or that customer I mentioned featuring. Post it on your website and link it to your e-newsletter.

Now is the time to connect. Project an attitude of hope to your customers and assure them that your small business is here to stay.