BUSINESS AS USUAL IS OVER
To survive the “new normal” you need to innovate
We had a choice to make on March 16, 2020: Sink or swim.
Like so many businesses all over the world, Swim was affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Our employees, clients, vendors and community found themselves in unchartered waters. The state-issued “Stay At Home MN” directive helped to slow the spread of the coronavirus. But it also marked the beginning of a “new normal.”
This outbreak, and the measures put in place to combat it, forced businesses like Swim to make decisions. After relocating our employees to home office arrangements, Swim was able to begin working remotely almost immediately. Next, we reached out to clients to offer assistance wherever needed. After hearing their concerns about the future, our team realized this new normal would require more than “business as usual.” It would require innovation.
First, Swim established a program whereby any businesses would have access to a one-hour free strategy session via Google Meet. Swim asked prompting questions that helped guide client conversations. Next, a small group from Swim used strategy and creativity to brainstorm tactics that addressed the client’s goals and objectives and then presented those ideas to the client. Businesses ranging from military branches to construction companies took advantage of the opportunity.
Next, Swim took a look at their current business model and explored how marketing could evolve in the coming weeks, months and years. They recognized businesses emerging from the pandemic would value speed and cost-effective marketing that didn’t sacrifice quality. Swim was uniquely positioned to do just that.
Swim launched Backstroke.pro, a dedicated web design and development partner for marketing, advertising and digital agencies. Backstroke.pro was founded with a single purpose: To offer partner agencies the best web development process from the most talented and personable people in the field. Backstroke.pro employs the best web developers and planners, and supports them with brand designers, writers and project managers. Together, their combined team creates intuitive and inspiring websites that are successful on every level and by every metric — making them the ideal partner for creative agencies looking for web work built on advanced design sensibility and a brand-first approach.
Then, Swim created a service line that would make digital content accessible to almost any business. The introduction of à la content meant that businesses could now partner with a nimble, inexpensive and highly creative content studio, creating lots of digital content fast, without busting their budget.
In mid-June, Swim announced a summer promotion on website design and development. We drastically reduced our prices, making websites as affordable as possible for companies who either needed a refresh, a total redo or an online store.
All told, we had sixty days from the time we started working from home to the time Governor Walz began lifting restrictions. In that time, we strategized what regional businesses would need, created the products, and got them to market.
That level of innovation IS the new normal.