Since the outbreak of the virus almost a year ago physical movements have been discouraged and sometimes restricted, consumers are migrating to virtual way of living at a fast rate and are forced to change behaviors to survive.
This could require businesses and people individually, if they are to survive, to go beyond traditional methods of living.
A few days ago, I saw an ad of a home delivery services in Kigali- RUSH FOODS and I gave it a try (reluctantly because I had a bad experience with another local delivery company!)
Nevertheless, surprisingly, what I called a try have now become my way of living, my shopping behaviors have since changed and this is likely to stick permanently.
Myself and other hundreds of people like me around the country are an example of consumer behavior change!
Wait! Before I continue, I strongly recommend Rush Foods for their efficiency when it comes to online shopping in Kigali.
It is arguably the leading on-demand delivery service platform in Kigali for users seeking groceries, beverages, retail items and other products.
I know some of you will ask me where you can get the app. It is available on both Apple store and Google play.
For some people, it is not a bad thing that behaviors are changing- “we are trying new things that probably we would never dare to do in our comfort zones” a friend of mine told me.
Adding “Every cloud has a silver lining; this is not the time to complain but to seize opportunities one would never have under normal circumstances”.
Some businesses, specifically corporates, have been able to pivot what they offer into things that are now arguably more needed.
Others have changed how they offer their services. They are not complaining but rather grabbing opportunities all the way.
Going virtual is now the way out and the country has almost all what it takes for businesses to cope with COVID19.
KT Press, one of the local newspapers, wrote in 2018 “Indeed, Rwanda has laid over 3,000km fiber optic network with 4G LTE connectivity, covering 95% of the country!
But currently, most talk among people do not include the possibility of connecting this internet to homes. Rather, they think, it is an infrastructure which only intends to connect a district office, a hospital in the area, schools and other public buildings.”
And I can’t agree more.
Unfortunately, many businesses, specifically SMEs, have been reluctant to exploit such opportunities to maintain their agility, in modifying and adjusting the businesses to the tune to keep afloat.
Because today it is no longer about what you do as a business but how you do it. The world has gone virtual and we have to dance to the tune.
Consumers want brands to offer just practical help including coming up with innovative ways to stay in touch with clients in all ups and downs.
If the lock down came and your business went dark, it means you somehow lost trust.
With that said, when time normalizes, it strongly possible that people will take their money to those who provided solutions whatsoever to get us through hard times.
We have always known that complaining is not a strategy at all. Of course, if you want you can complain but the bad side of this is that it does not give you time to re-strategize.
I am not arguing that complaining is always bad- no sometimes it works! However, as Jack Ma said there are always opportunities where people are complaining, “There are so many opportunities in the world because there are so many complaints.”
Spending today complaining won’t make tomorrow any better.
Vital Karangwa is a media and digital marketing strategist.
The views expressed in this article are his own.