8. What To Do When Your Business Is Down

Host Jordan takes the mic today to address a huge issue plaguing laundromat owners throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Business is down significantly for many laundromats and many owners are at a loss for what to do to stay afloat and recover. 

Today’s show is meant to serve as a perspective shifter. As laundromat owners we have two potential responses: 

  1. We can play defense and hope to ride things out.
  2. We can take some initiative and be proactive in our approach to this new shift in our world.

Jordan talks through some practical ways that we can be proactive during these tough times to not only improve our businesses now, but also to position our laundromats to thrive when the economy recovers. 

If you’re a laundromat owner or if you’re someone who wants to buy a laundromat, this episode might just be the perspective shift you need to get your business moving in the right direction again!

Watch The Podcast Here

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Episode Transcript

you’re listening to the laundromat
resource podcast the show by laundromat
owners for laundromat owners with your
hosts Jordan Barry hey guys what is up
its Jordan the laundromat resource
podcast this is show number eight and I
I just need to take a second because I
read a stat somewhere I don’t know where
and I don’t know how legitimate it is
but I read somewhere that most podcasts
don’t make it past eight episodes in
today is episode number eight for the
laundromat resource podcast and all we
have to do is put one more out after
this one and we’re gonna be cruising
right past most podcasts in in terms of
you know success so I’m pretty excited
about it maybe next week we will
celebrate and I know barring some
catastrophe there’s gonna be another
episode in fact I’ve already recorded
three the next three episodes and you
know their killer episode you’re gonna
definitely want to tune in to them
the owners that I interview for the next
three episodes have insane stories I
know you’re gonna pull a ton of value
out of them I know I did already and I
don’t want to spoil any of it for you
cuz these these owners are and they’re
they’re incredible so make sure that
you’re subscribed to this podcast if
you’re watching on youtube subscribe
here we’re on all the platforms for
podcasts so make sure you subscribe and
whichever one that you use because
you’re not just please trust me you’re
not gonna want to miss the next few
episodes that’s for sure
this one you can give it take it or
leave it no I’m just kidding but hey
next week we’re gonna celebrate getting
over the 8th episode hump but today this
episode we need to celebrate something
else and it’s this officially the
laundromat resource podcast has been
downloaded and listened to on six of the
seven continents and man it’s just it’s
a crazy time where
you know this little podcast can be put
out and you listen to all over the world
except for Antarctica and so now my goal
is somebody on Antarctica has got to
need some information about laundromats
and I want to get in front of them I’m
pretty sure there’s no laundromats on
Antarctica so I’m not really sure how
exactly that’s gonna happen but if any
of you are traveling to Antarctica do me
a huge favor and go and download an
episode and listen to it in Antarctica
so we can knock off the entire world
global domination I will shower you with
love and affection and gifts so just
kidding but no but seriously I will so
do it
in fact go plan a trip right now to
Antarctica and let’s just take over the
all right enough celebrating and enough
of that it’s time to shame you a little
bit that’s right I said shame you and
here’s why is because last week was an
incredible episode it’s one of our most
downloaded episodes with Brandon under
salt for good reason he really brought
it has a ton of wisdom that he brought
so if you haven’t listened to show
number 7 yet go back and download it
listen to it because Brandon really
brings the heat and it was an awesome
episode I had a ton of fun with Brandon
so I definitely go do that but in the
beginning of that episode I I challenged
everybody to go and go to the forums
lauter Matt resource calm slash forums
and ask a question and answer a question
and the reason I did that the reason
before I start shaming you because I’m
going to you brace yourself the reason I
asked you to do that is because I
genuinely want you to succeed I want us
all to succeed I want you to find
financial freedom with laundromats if
that’s something that you want to do if
you own laundromats
I really want to see your business
continue to grow and your vision
continue to grow and and that’s why I’m
doing what I’m doing it’s why I’m
putting out all this information and I
genuinely believe that the best shot we
have of doing that is if we do it
together and if we help each other along
the way so that’s why I challenged you
go to laundromat resource that coms for
or forum either one they go to the same
place and and go ask a question and
answer a question and a few of you did
that and kudos to you guys you guys are
my heroes
you guys are all-stars and I’m pumped
about it in fact you have a special
place in my heart that no one else can
occupy you’re in there you locked your
there for good however for the rest of
you I know for a fact I get the numbers
hundreds of people downloaded the last
episode hundreds and we only had a few
that went to the forums and asked a
question and answered a question so
shame on you
and this week you have a chance at
redemption I don’t know there’s still
room in my heart and you have a chance
to get in there so go to loggernet
resource calm this week slash forum go
in there ask a question and answer a
question contribute be a part of the
community be a part of helping yourself
and the other people in the community to
achieve success in this business because
again I think we’re all better together
so let’s do it a lot of my resource calm
/ forum I’ll put a link in the
description I’ll put a link on the show
notes page which will be laundrymat
resource calm / show 8 show 8 all one
thing all one word no underscores your
spaces a lot of my research comps I show
8 there’s a link in the description
there’ll be links there go do it ask a
question answer a question in the forums
this week let’s let’s just do this thing
together all right I’m done shaming you
and I still love you and you know
sometimes you just need to bring a
little tough love and that’s what I was
bringing today ok enough celebrating
enough anticipating next week’s
celebration where we get over that 8
episode huh and enough shaming you real
quick I want to highlight a couple of
questions that did come up in the forums
this week because I think they’re good
ones the first one is from Jeffrey and
Jeffrey wants to know whether he should
buy new or used equipment to
but in his store now I have an opinion
on this I bet a lot of you guys have an
opinion on this but I think a lot of you
guys could help Jeffrey sort of sort out
some of the pros and cons of this this
topic because I think there are pros and
cons to both and I think a lot of you
guys can really answer that better even
than I can so go help Jeffrey with that
on the forums figure out if you should
get new or use the equipment to put in a
store and the second one that I want to
highlight I actually think is a really
really great question it’s one that I’m
not sure that I have a great answer to
but I’m confident that there are people
listening to this who really really
could could answer this question while
it’s from Corey so go help Corey out
because Corey wants to know how how do
you determine whether you should buy new
equipment to put in your store or not
how do you determine if it’s worth it if
the investment is worth it and I think
that’s a really great question and again
I know that some of you guys listen to
this can really actually shed some
valuable light for Corey and for me and
for everybody else on this question so a
lot of my research that comp slash forum
go help Corey and Jeffery out with those
questions go ask a question go answer a
question and let’s get into this episode
and real quick before we do quick
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description alright let’s get into this
episode because today we’re gonna talk
about something that I think is really
important and the reason I think it’s
important is because I have been getting
slammed with coaching calls laundromat
resource comm slash coaching if you’re
interested from owners who have just
been struggling we’re in you know right
now we’re we’re kind of in the middle of
this kovat 19 pandemic thing now
hopefully on the tail end of it because
I know a lot of places are starting to
open back up more but a lot of owners
have really been struggling and so I’ve
been talking with a lot of you guys and
and other owners who you know whose
businesses are down 30 40 50 % and and
are just worried about if their business
is even gonna survive and man I I you
know I felt that and I empathize and I
sympathize with those feelings because
you know my businesses were down too and
I so I get it and I I just wanted to
take this episode to just talk a little
bit about it laundromat owner –
laundromat owners and and just have a
little pep talk here because I think
that you know there there’s a couple of
different ways that you can react to all
this and the first way is just kind of
turtle up and to protect yourself and
just kind of hope you know stick your
head in the sand and hope everything
works out and that is one way to
approach it and
good or bad I won’t say but it’s you
know it’s it’s one way to approach it
and hopefully everything will just be
fine and will turn out a ok I prefer a
little bit more of a proactive approach
and the problem with the proactive
approach is you got to know what actions
to take in a proactive approach and it’s
not really clear-cut nobody’s really
ever gone through something like this
before and so it’s hard to know exactly
what it is that we should do when the
economy is just crickets it’s you know
it’s just so slow but I think we can
learn a lot of lessons from this and I
think that there are some things that we
can do so I just wanted to address that
a little bit today let’s get into it and
hopefully you find some value in this
hopefully you find some you know hope in
this and some motivation if you’re
needing that but you know hopefully this
is just an opportunity for us to all
come together right now and just
empathize with each other and support
each other maybe go over to the forums
lotterman research comm slash forums and
chat about it a little bit share your
ideas about what you’ve been doing to
kind of keep your business afloat and
keep things rolling and keep them moving
I you know I think that everybody would
benefit from that so you know if you
have to go over to the forums this week
and ask a question and answer a question
that’s a really good one to go there’s a
softball I just lobbed it up for you and
then I don’t have to shame you next week
so no more shaming no more shaving but
hey let’s talk about it over there but
anyways uh okay so let’s talk about this
proactive approach what does that mean
and yeah I have three kind of main
topics that I think that we can talk
about things that we can continue to do
right now or start doing right now that
will help our businesses now and in the
future but also I think just taken from
lessons that I’ve learned from you know
the last couple of months and how things
have gone and maybe ways that I should
have been thinking and things I should
have been doing anyways before that so
let’s talk about that so the first thing
I think that we can do
is doubled down and that’s really scary
okay so when business is down and when
things are hard and you’re feeling the
pressure and your bills are loading up
and you’re not sure if you can pee more
you’re pretty sure you can’t pay them
and everybody’s kind of breathing down
your neck I have been there I’ve felt
that pressure it is a horrible feeling
and the last thing that I would want to
hear feeling that and the last thing I
want to hear right now feeling that is
somebody to say hey you got a double
down but let’s talk about that a little
bit and and let me tell you what I mean
by that and you know go over to the
forums and just blast me if you think
I’m being unreasonable but here’s three
ways that I think you can double down
during this downtime right now or during
any time really the first way to double
down is with your time now I know a lot
of us the reason myself included one of
the big reasons that we got into this
industry is because laundromats can be a
relatively hands-off business a
relatively time independent especially
for a business it doesn’t get a whole
lot less hands-on than laundromat if
that’s the way you want to run it
however you know during tough times it
requires you to do something different
if you want to have different results so
you can either go the way of the economy
and just let your business fall the way
that the rest of businesses are falling
and you know just hope that you can hold
on long enough to where things rebound
and you’re still okay or you can kind of
double down you can dig deep and you can
double down on your time that you invest
in in your laundromat whether that’s
being at your laundromat or whether that
is you know investing time in thinking
about and planning you what you’re gonna
be doing in whatever that might be
spending your time investing in your
laundromat so you know that is one way
that you can double down and a lot of us
have the time you know even if you have
a full time job right now a lot of us
are working from home some of us
unfortunately you know
Furlow or got laid off so the time is
there for a lot of us so double down on
that time and really go invest it into
your laundromat invest that time in
there whether that’s you know I have
things at this laundromat that I’m at
right now I’m recording this from my
laundromat and I have things here like
little projects patch ups and stuff like
that that I’ve been meaning to do
forever and I haven’t done them even
though now is the time to double down
and to get in here and just polish up
this place make it make it look new
again make you know make everything
shiny and patch up the little dings that
are here and they’re all that stuff so
double down your time is one thing that
you can be doing right now get in that
laundromat go figure out ways that you
can improve your business to keep
customers coming back but also to set
yourself up for when things do rebound
and people do start coming back and they
can come back and say hey I can tell the
owners spend a lot of time here you know
while I’ve been in my pajamas not
changing my clothes for two months and
didn’t need to do any laundry so double
down that time here’s us another a
second way that you can double down and
it’s double down your investment now
don’t freak out so I you know I know
this you know one of my laundromats was
down like 40 percent for a while it’s
it’s rebounding now it’s not quite back
up to where it was pre kovat 19 but it’s
it’s coming back and I know that at the
heart of that when I was down 40 percent
and I was like oh my gosh the last thing
I want to be here is hey go spend more
money on your laundromat and I just want
to be clear I’m not necessarily saying
the investment has to be a financial
investment it might be it might be a
great time for you to put in new
machines it might be a great time for
you to have your floors redone maybe
they’re starting to look old and dingy
it might be a great time to put a coat
of paint on and freshen things up might
be a great time to invest in your
laundromat in the
his ways where you’re investing money
but there are other ways to invest in
your laundromat business that you don’t
necessarily have to fork out a ton of
money for so for example you know if
there are things that you you could have
in your laundromat that could be revenue
generating maybe now’s the time to do it
now we have a free value-add checklist
that you can download for free and it
just it has some ideas of things ways
that you can improve improve the income
of your laundromat and I just man go get
it in fact I made a YouTube video about
it and there’s a special link that was
only for those people who watched that
YouTube video but I’m gonna just share
it with you here I’ll put a link in the
description just because I think this is
so relevant to what we’re talking about
today if you own a laundromat or even if
you’re thinking about buying one this is
an awesome thing to have so you can you
know take a look around at these
laundromats and see hey here’s some
places where I could actually improve
the income and therefore improve the
value the equity in my laundromat so
here’s the link from the YouTube video
it’s a lot about resource calm slash and
more money and I’ll put links again in
the description and on the show notes
page laundromat resource calm slash show
8 so go download that that’s for free
you don’t need to even give an email
address for it you can just download it
for free so go do that those are ways
that you can invest in your laundromat
and and some of them require some
monetary investment and some of them
don’t so double down on your investment
your laundromat is an asset that you
have so utilize it to its fullest to its
maximum that you can utilize it because
because you have it already so why not
do that so that’s the second way you can
double down the third way that you can
double down is to double down on the
value that you’re offering your
customers now you know Dave mins and
show too I’ll put a link if you have a
listen to that one that one is that
episode Dave is easy
he’s a rock star and you have to listen
to episode to show to a lot of my
resource at comps last show – if you
haven’t yet but he talks a lot about
value and offering your customers value
and that doesn’t mean having the
cheapest prices in town in fact dave
says he offers a ton of value and he’s
one of the most expensive laundromats in
his area and so that doesn’t mean that
but it does mean hey you know make sure
you’re having conversations with your
attendants about the experience your
customers have when they walk in their
laundromat are they greeted with a smile
are your attendants helping bring in
laundry are they helping carry laundry
out you know is the store spic and span
when customers come in you know find
ways to add value to customers that make
them want to keep coming back and I
think that you’ll find the more value
you add the more loyalty you breed and
the more that customers want to support
you in what you’re doing
I just I’m like I’m recording this at my
laundromat after I closed it’s just when
I had time to do it and I was just
talking to a lady that was here
finishing up and she said that the
reason that she’s here is because her
husband met me and he just really wanted
to support what I’m doing because he
loves what I’m doing in the community
that is it when you provide value for
the community they’re going to want to
support you in what you’re doing even
when the economy so so look for ways to
double down on the value that you
provide the customers go the extra mile
encourage your employees to go the extra
mile take the next step double down
double down on your time
double down on your investment and
double down on the value that you’re
providing with your laundromat all right
so that’s one kind of category I wanted
to hit there’s two more and you know I
just again I I know the feeling of
feeling so frustrated a feeling so
hopeless of not knowing what to do so
I’m trying to put some tools in your
hands just to kind of get the brain
started again get things moving and if
you need some help there if you need
some inspiration hopefully
here so here’s the second thing is you
know when business is down think
short-term now here’s here’s a few ways
that I think that you can think
short-term number one is you need to
look at your expenses you need to kind
of be ruthless when business is down
it’s really hard to do because again
this is like a community thing that
we’re you know we’re building here you
know if you have employees they become
like family but you need to this is a
business too you know so you need to be
ruthless and here’s what I mean by that
you need to look at all your expenses
and cut all the expenses that aren’t
necessary for the short term it doesn’t
mean you need to cut them completely
forever but you know if business is down
40% you need to look at ways to cut some
costs sometimes that means cutting hours
sometimes that means you know if
furloughing people or letting people go
temporarily so you can rehire them those
are difficult difficult decisions but a
lot of times the decision is between
doing that or losing the business and if
it’s between those two you need to
preserve the business so that you have
an opportunity to bring those people
back after you know all of this is over
with and things are back to normal
because if you lose your business
they’re gonna lose their job anyways and
there’s nothing for them to come back to
so sometimes you need to make hard
decisions when it comes to employees
when it comes to ours those kinds of
things but there are other costs that
you can cut first so look at all of
those expenses you know maybe you need
to cut that cable bill for a little bit
and just buy some antennas you know HD
antennas and stick them on top of the TV
and you know watch some PBS for a while
or whatever you know there’s there’s
things that you can do so look at all
your expenses figure out what’s not
absolutely necessary cut those costs and
then don’t be afraid to make hard
decisions when you’re thinking short
term and a second thing we’re thinking
short term
is look for needs that you can meet and
here’s what I mean by that you know
there are different different needs that
you can meet for the customers that are
coming in or for your customers when
they do come in so look for other
opportunities to meet different needs
that they have maybe they need you know
alterations or maybe they need just
snacks and having different snack
varieties there for them to you know
munch on while they’re there and you can
make a little bit of revenue back that
way so look for whatever needs you can
find and and look for ways to meet those
needs because it’s when you meet needs
that you’re creating value and when you
create value that is when customers will
trade that value for money and that’s
what we’re trying to do here so look for
ways to meet needs and to create value
that way in the short term and it might
be things that you continue on once
things recover but it might not be it
might be things that are just for this
time right now so be creative there and
look for ways to meet needs okay so
number one double down your time your
investment and your value number two
think short term and you know cut those
costs wherever you can and meet needs so
number three the third kind of category
of things that you can be doing a while
while business is down is think long
term now this is the hard one because
long term things don’t necessarily
contribute right now they’re not the
things that are gonna keep your business
right now necessarily however we have an
opportunity right now to take a look at
our businesses while everybody’s kind of
suffering together take a look at your
businesses and think okay this is not
gonna be like this forever so when
things come back when business is back
how can I set myself up to be ahead of
everyone else what are the things that I
can be doing right now to be ahead of
the game
and to be able to shoot out of that gate
you know at lightning speed and I think
that question is a huge question and
it’s one that we don’t often have a lot
of time to just kind of stop the
whirlwind of all the things that need to
be done to run our business and to try
to recoup money that we’re losing and in
you know get out from under the stress
and just think long term a little bit
but I think that the dividends that that
pays right now will be huge huge for you
huge for your business so take that time
let’s talk a little bit about some ways
to do that now one thing that you one
question that you can ask yourself is
what is my community going to look like
the community my laundromats in what’s
it gonna look like in one year from now
or in five years from now or in ten
years from now how are things going to
change what are the implications of the
way things are now versus the way things
are gonna be then and how can I kind of
try to get ahead of that now those are
tough questions to ask and tough
questions to answer because nobody
obviously has a crystal ball but you
know those are the kinds of questions
that you can be asking now here’s
another one what’s the laundromat
industry gonna be like five years from
now ten years from now I’ve kind of
talked a little bit about how I think
laundromats are moving more and more
towards a pickup and delivery you know
pick up a delivery service kind of model
a fluff and fold obviously those things
have been going for a long time but just
I think that pickup and delivery in
particular is going to continue to grow
more and more and more every year so
maybe you’re thinking long term okay how
can I begin to implement this maybe I’m
not launching a full on pickup and
delivery service but maybe I can go get
a couple of clients and and do that or
maybe I can just start laying groundwork
for that whatever that might look like
maybe that’s you know adding a payment
system that’s easy to use for attendance
to do laundry maybe a card system on
even just a few machines or or whatever
that might look like laying the
groundwork for that
you know another question you can ask is
how can I get in front of more people
and how can I get my business in my
laundromat in front of more people right
now and so maybe that is hey you know I
don’t have a website for my laundromat
if that’s you you have got to go to the
laundromat resource com such good online
and you know man get online you have to
be online you need to have a website you
need to have a Google my business
account you need to be on Google Maps
Apple maps you do you need to have that
presence so if you don’t have that let
us help you do it we do it for for our
businesses we’ve helped a lot of other
people do it for their businesses you
know our my you know my log about
website is ranked number one on Google
and it’s on you know Google Maps on
Apple mat all that stuff so we know what
we’re doing we know marketing we know
laundromats so we can help you out there
but you know maybe you already have a
web presence and your website but now is
a good time to really refresh that and
really take a look at that and say okay
well it’s just been sitting there how
can I be a little more proactive about
driving people to that website so that
they know that I’m there so maybe you
need to start making some youtube videos
and getting out there maybe you need to
you know up your Instagram game or your
Facebook game or you know whatever the
case may be but how can you lay that
groundwork where you can start getting
in front of more people so that you know
that’s another question that you can ask
another question to ask is how can i
reinforce customer loyalty right now are
there things that you can be doing right
now to just really make your current
customers be like I can’t believe they
did that during that time I know I had
to have been hard for them you know
during that time and yet they still
thought of me in this way what can you
do to reinforce customer loyalty so
those are just a few ideas I wanted to
go over I don’t want to talk your ear
off forever I’ve already been talking
for way too long and I appreciate you
listening this long hopefully you found
something valuable in that but hey you
know what I know times are tough right
but let’s just pull together you know
let’s help each other out let’s help
each other through this time and let’s
you know let’s be a little proactive
right now – I know I’m doing that with
my businesses and I you know I encourage
you to keep doing that with your
businesses also so let’s you know let’s
just keep on trucking but let’s keep
doing it in a smart way where we’re
being proactive and we’re looking for
ways to improve our businesses even now
even when it’s tough even when business
is down all right thank you guys I am so
pumped that we are here doing this thing
together I love every second of it and
make sure that you subscribe because the
net believe me the next few weeks of
episodes will blow your mind you will
get tons and tons of value I promise I’m
not gonna talk at you for any amount of
time hardly at all I’m gonna let these
other guys do all the talking because
they have got some incredible things
going on and some incredible things to
share with you so we will see you next
Tuesday for the ninth episode
celebration it’s gonna be a party so be
there we’ll see you next week

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