How was the re-opening of your business and how was it carried out in line with safety procedures put in place to allow social distancing?
Being a platform, the main thing was to make our users feel comfortable with transacting online and in the real world. We set out guidance in line with the "We're Good to Go" scheme from as soon as it came out and published it on our website (https://stasher.com). We sent it directly by email to our hosts too.
How is the general feeling and feedback from your team members and your customers now the lockdown is over?
Ahh, well, the mood has changed a lot again in the last week. The feeling of optimism that came with August's encouragement of people to move around has given way to a sense that we're in for 6
more months of trouble. So, it goes.
What role has technology played in supporting your re-opening plan
Tech is, of course, fundamental. We use it to connect all the parties on our marketplace. It's been more important than ever during this period of distancing, to stay in contact and build rapport.
What market trends are you seeing since re-opening?
Staycations and longer-duration trips are, predictably, more popular than they would otherwise have been. International travel has suffered and will continue to into next year.
What techniques have you used to build sales and re-engage customers?
We've stuck with tried and tested strategies like producing content (evergreen where possible) and distributing by email and social. For sales, LinkedIn has been positive, and we've approached all conversations with a mid-long-term attitude, saying "we're building for the future, if you are too, let's partner up"
What positive lessons do we need to learn from what the industry has been through?
For all businesses, the uncertainty we have been through is a reminder of the importance of cashflow. Second, it's demonstrated the risk of having heavy overheads, which means nimble asset-light companies have a relative advantage. It's challenged our conventional norms of office work, and although I'd hate to see the office go (I miss it), there will be positives in the future in terms of remote working being more accepted.
Date Published: 28th September 2020