A bit of good news…finally.

What’s Happening Across IRPA AI’s Network Post COVID-19 & What We’re Doing About It

A bit of good news...finally. 

A message from IRPA AI Media's President on what's happening across our network post COVID-19 and what we're doing about it

In speaking with dozens of members since the shutdown started, the consensus was pretty much the same, regardless of who they were or where they were in the world: amongst all of the uncertainty,  the prudent thing to do was hold off on all decisions and investments for the foreseeable future, freeze spending and just keep the ship afloat…but in the last few weeks, I’ve seen things begin to change and I now realize that this couldn’t be any further from the right strategy.

With quarantines extending in some areas and openings slowing happening in others, one thing is sure: the old ways of doing things are gone. 

But here’s the good news: this situation may represent the biggest business opportunities in generations, for people to create lifelong relationships and for organizations to re-invent themselves and gain unprecedented mindshare and marketshare.

In a recent interview, former Cisco Chairman John Chambers reminded us that tough times are when the best relationships are built and the most marketshare can be won. He suggests that companies not become a victim and pivot to focus on today, not on 12 months down the road.

It’s All About Relationships

No surprise, many members I’m speaking with are still unsure as to where to place their bets….but my advice to them is simple: focus on relationships. Good business has always been about building and maintaining relationships. And it’s STILL about relationships… now more than ever.   

In times of uncertainty, people go first to those they trust, especially when every decision is more risky and highly scrutinized. And while some initial and more complicated strategic deals have certainly been postponed or put on hold in the last 60 days, there has been a recent surge of interest in automation and digital solutions across our network and members who are coming to us for advice, as their business models are changing and digital transformation is now becoming even more of a priority.

Providers are being more flexible, innovative and partnering more than ever before; customers are looking for answers with a renewed urgency on how to help support their businesses in this new normal.

So unless you’re planning to write off the next Quarter, or even the rest of this year, you need to find ways to make smart, ROI-centric investments right now.

It’s Time to Go Virtual

As the COVID-19 situation evolves, its seeming less and less likely that face to face events or meetings will happen at all in 2020. Governments are phasing re-openings, with the final phase being mass gatherings, which are getting pushed further and further back into the end of the year; some mayors are even suggesting that no public events will be scheduled in their cities until next year; and the CDC is now saying that another wave may happen this coming Fall or Winter. Sufficed to say, if you were planning on an event with more than 20 or 30 people, it’s becoming evident that this may not even be possible in most locales for 2020 or beyond, and even if it is, the likelihood that people will be able or willing to travel and attend a large event full of people anytime soon is seeming highly unlikely. 

Here’s our advice:
•  Switch your physical conferences to webcasts. Webinars give you the ability to reach large numbers in a short period of time and still be engaging through polls, Q&A and video

• Switch smaller events to invite-only virtual roundtables. With a small group of targeted participants in a closed virtual group, you can still benefit from the dialog and interaction of a physical event, perhaps with a higher likelihood of getting senior execs to attend while at home vs a physical event they would have had to travel to get to

• Virtually connect with your customers often to check in and provide value. Face to face interactions may have been best before, but today’s tech allows you to still keep prospects engaged and in dialog with more frequent touch points than ever before

Our Solutions for Members

It’s with these things in mind that IRPA AI & the Digital Enterprise Institute have updated all of our member programs to focus on making more immediate connections, helping maximize interactive engagement  and being the ultimate relationship-building machine that only a true industry ecosystem can provide, leveraging:

·       1-on-1 Industry Briefings & Matchmaking for Members

·       Virtual Roundtables and Web Events

·       Local Chapters

·       Sales & Marketing Subscriptions for Providers

If you are looking for relationship-building channels in order to emerge ahead in all of this, stay tuned. We are looking forward to helping you into the next phase of your journey.

Be well,

Daniel Goodstein
IRPA AI & Digital Enterprise Institute Media

Follow me on Twitter: @dangoodstein
Connect on LinkedIn 

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