The COVID 19 pandemic has brought a new awakening to big and small businesses in Tanzania. It has been obvious now that undergoing digital transformation is the only way to keep your business going.
In fact, businesses that did not have a digital presence of any kind are the ones losing the most during this pandemic.
And the reality is that things are not going to get back to normal! In fact, things were already beginning to change even before the pandemic.
Before Covid19, the digital landscape in Tanzania was already taking significant growth (over 26 million Tanzanians were using the internet by the end of 2019). So it is fair to say COVID 19 has brought the future early.
It was only a matter of time before businesses were forced to undergo digital transformations.
Welcome to the new digital Darwinism: If you don’t adapt, you are left behind and forgotten.
There is a big need for businesses to rethink how they operate in the world that is increasingly becoming digital. Not to mention recurring uncertainties.
Undergoing significant digital transformations can help you stay relevant and connected with your customers.
By saying digital transformations for businesses we mean, among other things, having infrastructures such as being able to collaborate online (remote work), knowing the best tools to use, leveraging online platforms such as websites, and social channels to grow brand awareness, as well as staying abreast with current trends in the digital world.
The way forward here is to adapt – so that you won’t risk being run over by your competitor in the disruptive digital communication’s race.
So, what are we doing to help?
Knowing the challenges small businesses and entrepreneurs go through on the journey of taking their business online, we have decided to be part of the help. Here is what we are doing to offer help during this pandemic.
- Content creation (that is customer-focused) and content promotion tactics to help establish themselves as thought leaders in their niche.
- Using data to measure digital success
- Providing resources such as content calendars, social media posting ideas, and other resources. This includes changing the focus of our blog articles into helping readers on how to grow their businesses in the digital world.
- Creating websites at affordable prices everyone can manage (we know these are hard times financially) plus a dedicated SEO strategy to help startups get noticed on the web just like we did on our business.
AND HERE’S A GIFT FOR YOU: Download our list of social media posting ideas that can help you to increase engagement on your social channels. We use these exact ideas for our clients and they have proved to boost engagement especially on Instagram and Facebook.
And the best part of all, we are open to giving a dedicated Digital Marketing consultation to small business owners. This includes giving our best secrets that helped put us on top of Google in less than six months.
Wouldn’t you want to jump in front of your customers right at the moment when they are looking for you? Feel free to contact us HERE.
The Coronavirus has inevitably entered Tanzania and the government is already taking necessary measures to stop its spread.
Coronavirus —a respiratory illness with flu-like symptoms; fever, headache, dry cough, fatigue and shortness of breath is now a public health emergency of global concern that has killed more than 147,376 people and infected more than 2 million worldwide, record as of April 17, 2020.
According to WHO, the virus spreads like the flu. Whenever someone with the virus coughs or exhales, they release droplets of infected fluid that can land on nearby surfaces like desks and can infect another person who comes into contact.
As you know, the society and economy is in an unprecedented state of confusion, uncertainty and disorder. The government has already closed down schools for 30 days.
This health crisis is impacting everyone and everything in our daily activities including businesses. Events and workshops are now being canceled or postponed.
COVID-19 is impacting small businesses as they lack enough incentive to navigate during this time of uncertainty.
With that in mind, how will businesses continue to run smoothly in these challenging times? With everyone advised to self quarantine, your shop at Kariakoo is obviously going to receive fewer customers than usual and you are probably not going to able to import goods from highly affected countries.
If you are mamantilie selling maandazi at a school gate, your business is going to stop for 30 days.
With all these happening —what reasonably safe place can you go for shopping while not giving chances to contact COVID-19? Or if you have a business selling products and services, can you still sell (online and offer delivery?) without risking both your life and your customers’ lives coming at your shop?
It is time to work, buy and sell online (if possible)
Most Tanzanians are not big fans of buying online. They would rather go to an overcrowded Kariakoo or Karume marketplace looking for things to buy. But that is too risky especially now that we have confirmed cases of Coronavirus in the country.
During this social distancing time, it is important for businesses to leverage online platforms that offer selling and buying services.
For schools, now is a crucial moment to start thinking of going digital. Event planners and organizers should forget about venues for a moment and shift to podcasts and webinars.
For managers in companies, now is the time to create remote work infrastructure and learn how to collaborate with your workers online. By using online collaboration tools like Trello, you can still work together even when you are quarantined.
Remember to use exact change when doing payments. If possible, always use mobile money payment.
It is time to embrace e-commerce and online platforms as a way to avoid crowds in Tanzania’s marketplaces. This will help you maintain minimal contacts with the crowd and stand a good chance of not being infected by the virus.
If you never thought about taking your business online, COVID-19 should change your mind.
Remember, the basic protective measures against coronavirus include washing your hands frequently, maintain social distancing, avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth, and practice respiratory hygiene.
All in all, safety and family comes first.
Coronavirus is real. Stay at home and don’t forget to put on your mask when you’re in mwendokasi or any crowded area. Avoid rumors and seek information from trusted sources only. Stay safe 🙏🏽.
Jumia closes down business in Tanzania.
As of November 27, Jumia announced to have made a difficult decision to cease its operations in Tanzania.
The Africa’s e-commerce giant has just decided to pull out from the 23 million internet users in the country. A statement from the company revealed that the retailer has decided to focus on operations in other countries where they can bring the best value and help Jumia thrive.
Business Insider reported that Jumia’s decisions have come at a time where the company is suffering terrible losses.
Does this suggest the difficulty in doing online business in the country?
Or it’s just Jumia’s failed business model? Because it is reported that the retailer has also closed down business in Cameroon.
We would say both. Yes, Tanzania is a difficult place for a business to go digital but also Jumia’s failed business strategy may be the reason.
Here are the reasons why;
Despite the growing number of internet users in Tanzania, the majority of them are not well equipped with online experience. Especially when it comes to shopping online.
It is hard to go digital in a community where people can barely tell the difference between Sign In and Sign Up. We are still keeping up with digital literacy in bongo!
We have talked to some of our friends and they admitted that they would rather visit the shop instead of buying online even when the shop provides free delivery services. They feel uncomfortable with filling forms and payment methods.
On the other hand, Jumia hasn’t really earned the human connection here. We doubt if they have any moving story to tell.
As we all know, big brands like Nike don’t pitch about their services or products, they just tell stories that unite people. This is something Jumia didn’t do quite well. They failed to humanize the brand. The Instagram account for Jumia in Tanzania is full of promotional content. We believe it could not cost them much to post testimonial videos from people who have bought products from the platform. Or featuring stories from vendors benefiting with selling on Jumia – just being creative.
The rule of thumb for running business in 2020 is not about advertising and branding, it is about focusing on building a great customer experience. -Tanzlite
It is so unfortunate that digital platforms which are meant to connect businesses with customers can also work against them. Building trust with your customer goes beyond promotional content, it is about creating content that build trust with your customer.
Are you facing any familiar challenges with running your business in the digital world? Let’s have a conversation.