Running summer marketing campaigns can help boost your revenue. Here are steps to take to help your business thrive this season.
Summer is a great time to launch new marketing initiatives. After consumers finish spending money over the holidays, the first few months of the year are typically a retail slump. While January through April aren’t known for high levels of spending, sales rebound in the summer months. This is especially true for brick-and-mortar businesses. However, the same period can be a slow one if you operate online.
Unless you work in a highly seasonal industry (like bathing suits or sunscreen), online retailers tend to see a drop in their sales during the summer months. With would-be buyers more interested in floating in the pool than shopping for goods, retail websites typically lie low while the temperature is high.
This isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Although the market might look different depending on what kind of business you own, running summer marketing campaigns can help boost your revenue and smooth out profits overall. Whether you’re trying to pull your sales out of a slump or make the most of the good weather, a little planning can go a long way.
Here are some ways you can start preparing for your summer marketing and sales initiatives now.
Understand how your industry trends with the weather
Part of launching a marketing campaign is understanding your target audience. Although most holiday marketing campaigns take into account general consumer data and the target demographic, summer initiatives need an extra component — heat!
There’s plenty of research to suggest warm weather changes consumer behavior. Weather is second only to the state of the economy in terms of influencing how people spend. A little sunshine can lead to customers willing to pay over 50% more for the same product. However much that is, you’ll see your sales level shift depends on the type of business you own.
Health foods, dental products, and cosmetics are all more popular when the weather is nice. Spring weather increases sales of gardening equipment and backyard furniture. This comes before the rush for barbecue equipment, sunglasses, and sunscreen.
Consumers are more willing to experiment with new foods in summer weather, especially if they’re young. Getting to know how your customers shop in the warmer months can be a big piece of making the most of summer sales.
Keep in mind that warm weather purchases are decided more by how customers feel, rather than the date on the calendar. A balmy spring day in New England is different from 1 in Arizona, and you might not see the same lift in sales if your business is located somewhere where it’s warm all the time.
Organize summer company sales around holidays
While the winter season is sometimes slanted towards giving, purchases in the summer tend to be more about you. You can take advantage of special days like:
- Memorial Day
- Labor Day
- 4th of July
Using a holiday to hold a sale gives your customers an excuse to treat themselves. Buyers are also more likely to take advantage of an offer when it’s bound by time or availability. Using the date of a holiday to begin or end your sale can help you seal the deal.
Using the date of a holiday to begin or end your sale can help you seal the deal.
Although the summer holidays are a great excuse to launch a summer marketing campaign, keep in mind that many consumers are away from home. This could perk up your in-person profits, but if you’re selling something online, it might be better to push the sale to the days before or after the holiday.
Plan in-person appearances to increase sales
No one can predict the weather. But, planning some experience-driven opportunities to increase holiday sales can be a chance to sell merchandise, raise the visibility of your brand, and direct traffic to your site.
Brick-and-mortar businesses aren’t excluded from this category either. Participating in pop-up promotions and partnering with other businesses can help you with your sales. Finding ways to create more customer contacts will be key!
You can also use this time to help support other small business owners in your community. This will help you create a strong network that can help support you in ways you may not realize.
Work on your digital strategy and content plan
Whether you’re expecting business to be busy or slow this summer, be sure to:
- Put in work ahead of time to build your email list
- Plan out your social media posts
- Create a digital content plan
Creating useful content for your target market helps make clients familiar with your business and your brand, and lets them trust what you have to offer.
Whether you’re taking these steps in the months leading up to the summer or you have some downtime in the season itself, focus on your digital strategy during the warmer seasons. Retail businesses expecting an uptick in foot traffic can benefit from a campaign to collect email addresses in person. Online businesses can run email marketing campaigns or run ads on social media to drive traffic and generate sales.
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Think about your staffing needs for the summer
Even for the smallest of small businesses, planning a summer marketing strategy doesn’t mean you have to go it alone! Whether the summer means a busy influx of customers or a lull, maximizing the efficiency (and effectiveness) of your staff is crucial.
If you’re expecting a summer rush, make sure you have enough people on board to handle your marketing efforts. If you’re planning to up your seasonal staff, make sure you review our seasonal hiring checklist on the basic steps you’ll need to take in advance.
Be open to niche avenues for hiring, such as students, veterans, new moms, or people with disabilities, all of whom might be perfect for a seasonal role.
If the summer means downtime, encourage your team to use vacation days, get away from the office, and get some much-needed rest before things pick up. Summer slumps are also a great time to get more information out about your corporate culture and work on your brand. That way, when it’s time to hire, you’ll know exactly who you’re looking for.
Whether it’s heat, sun, or just having time off work, the summer months change the game for many small businesses. With buyer behavior driven by fun and sunny weather, there’s no better time to be playful and creative with your marketing plans. Getting started early means you and your team can enjoy it as well. Happy shopping!