How Covid-19 Is Accelerating Digital Transformation for Small and Medium Businesses By pushing the boundaries of how and where we can do business, the COVID-19 pandemic has forced entrepreneurs to look at digital media in a new light.

By Luis Jorge Rios

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Christina Reichl Photography | Getty Images

I think we can all agree that Covid-19 has been a defining moment of this year as it has shifted everything from how we live our lives to how we do business. The transformation has been far-reaching, but it's mostly impacted the way small and medium-sized businesses operate online. When regulations shifted, and measures had to be put in place to contain the spread and protect public health, the environment changed, accelerating a digital transformation and pushing businesses to go online even if it was something they hadn't previously considered.

Related: 5 Simple Steps to Digitally Transform Your Business

By pushing the boundaries of how and where we can do business, the Covid-19 pandemic has forced entrepreneurs to look at digital media in a new light. It proved that digital media isn't only for social media brands and influencers. It is for everyone, and whether or not you are physically doing business with your audience online, that is where they are looking for you, and that is where you need to be.

Covid-19 has redefined where we do business

Entrepreneurs relying on a brick and mortar location open to the public were hit particularly hard during this pandemic. As regulations forced many locations to close and limit their activities, businesses quickly turned to online platforms to keep going. Kendall Shaw of Maybach Media explains, "If you can't go to your store or your location to do business, you have to find another outlet to stay afloat. The limits of online businesses were stretched to include everyone as delivery, curbside pick-up, and reservation-only business models were the only offerings allowed." Going online meant meeting customer demands in a new way.

Social media is no longer optional

Social media practically exploded during the coronavirus outbreak. Usage went up, engagement shot up, and everyone was spending a lot more time on social media during this pandemic. Businesses knew that to keep their customers, they had to begin interacting with them online if they weren't already. Social media is expanding the frontier for doing business in challenging times and it cannot be an afterthought anymore. It's all about staying connected.

Related: Free Webinar: Using Digital Transformation To Adapt To Today's New Normal

Your following is your foundation

Small to medium-sized businesses keen on adopting strategies to face this new normal understood that a strong following translates to a healthy bottom-line. "Your following is your repeat business," explains social media expert and CEO of Icon Social Marketing, Alex Shue. "As you concentrate on building your following pull that into a strategy that fills your pipeline and delivers increased sales." Alex believes that if you have a following, you have customers, and in 2020 businesses are finding their following online.

Related: How to Push Your Company to Digital Maturity

COVID-19 has certainly shifted the way we think about marketing, and with that in mind, the landscape is changing for small and medium-sized businesses as the post-pandemic world takes shape. With online strategies on everyone's mind, the power of digital is pushing businesses towards a brighter future where sudden regulatory changes don't inhibit opportunity.

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Luis Jorge Rios

Entrepreneur Leadership Network Writer

Movie Producer

U.S. Army war veteran Luis Jorge Rios is an entrepreneur and movie producer based in Hollywood, California. Luis works with companies to reach the big screen gaining authority globally in film and television.

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