How does a business know when to pivot? Typically a pivot occurs when a company makes a fundamental change after determining their product isn’t meeting the needs of their intended market.
And this pandemic may be the reason your product or service isn’t meeting those needs. If you are considering a pivot, it is important to revisit your business strategy and be intentional in the changes you decide to make.
What is a pivot?
Jacqueline Kirtley of the Wharton School of Business defines a pivot as the culmination of a series of adds and exits to a business. It not each individual change but the sum of all of them that represents a pivot. And by this definition, a pivot will happen over the course of months or even years.
Revisit the 4 P’s of marketing
Product, price, placement, and promotion – consider each of these aspects of your business as a barometer to know when to pivot – and HOW to change to respond to the rapidly changing business environment. If you determine it is necessary to make a change, you’ll be starting from a strategic place, and will be proactive, rather reactive.
In this week’s episode of The Pursuit of Purpose, I share some examples of pivots within the four P’s of marketing.
Product: Do you need to transition for a group program to an individual program? Can you use a portion of your product to make something necessary in the community (such as hand sanitizer, face masks or other personal protective gear)?
Placement: Social distancing eliminates the ability to support group programs. Move your events online. Stream your workouts. Do curb-side pick up rather than dine-in.
Price: How do the changes you’ve made in product or placement impact your pricing structure? Keep in mind the rapidly changing economy will also have a significant impact on your customer’s ability to pay for your goods or services.
Promotion: Review all of your promotional efforts – whether it is your messaging, the placement of those messages, the use of certain media or online placements – all need to be reviewed carefully to ensure you are being responsive to the environment we are facing currently. You don’t want to be viewed as insensitive or ignorant of what is happening while still trying to keep your business afloat.
- When and how entrepreneurs pivot. Interview with Jacqueline Kirkley on the Knowledge @ Wharton podcast
- What Pivoting is, When to Pivot, and How to Pivot Effectively The Founder Institute
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