9 Off-Season Marketing Strategies for Seasonal Businesses

Whether you own a food truck, a boutique guest house on the
beach, an outdoor adventure shop, or a pool cleaning business,
you’ve likely experienced the challenges of the dreaded
“off-season.” Once the peak season ends, a slow period begins,
where many businesses come to a halt. But don’t let seasonal
slumps get you down. The off-season is the perfect time to
concentrate on your marketing efforts.

Why off-season marketing is important to your business


Building your brand
isn’t achieved overnight. Once you’ve
established a name for yourself in the industry, it is important to
maintain and grow your audience for future success. If you want
continued success during your next peak season, an off-season
marketing strategy is key for two particular reasons.

It creates top of mind awareness.

Consider brands like Coca Cola, Apple, or Rolex. One thing they
all have in common is strong brand identity. This was achieved by
creating a product and a brand that are captivating, inspirational,
and memorable. Think about what sets your business apart from its
competitors and use that as a hook in your off-season marketing
strategy.

Creating this kind of memorability requires hard work and
consistency. Therefore, it’s important to stay in touch with your
audience, so you don’t completely drop off the map. The work you
do to build your brand during the off-season keeps your company’s
name in the mind of potential future customers.

It puts you ahead of the competition.

Building your brand’s image takes time, money, and hard work,
so what better time to tackle a full-blown marketing strategy than
in the off-season? To really understand your brand, potential
customers must see your marketing everywhere.

By marketing off-season, you give yourself time to engage with
your audience. You can also educate potential leads on what your
company offers and what makes it better than your competitors. Once
your peak season hits, you’ll have established a relationship
with people who understand the benefits of your business. This puts
you ahead of competitors who will wait until the
peak season
to reach out to their audience.

How to market your business during the off-season:

Wisely utilizing your off-season can benefit you in the long
term and set your business up for success when the peak season
hits. Read on to learn what you can do during the off-season to
keep your business on people’s minds all year round.

1. Grow your database during the peak season.

While business is booming in the peak season, this is a good
time to grow your database. Gather a list of past customers as well
as potential customers who have shown interest during your peak
season. Once the season ends, you can use this fresh list to engage
and connect with your customers and keep your business top of mind.
With your list of potential customers, use email marketing to reach
out. If done correctly, your email marketing efforts can convert
these new leads into customers by the time the next season
hits.

Make sure your website is also up-to-date, especially if you
want customers to take your business seriously. Your website needs
to be well managed, while your content should display plenty of
calls to action. A good tactic is to promote offers and specials
that past and potential customers can redeem during the off-season.
This shows that you value your customers and also gets feet through
the door during those quiet months.

2. Customer reviews matter.

In today’s information age, potential customers have access to
almost anything on the internet, and that includes reviews of your
business. Customer reviews play an integral part in a customer’s
buying journey, with many basing their decision on other people’s
experiences. During peak season, gather customer reviews (in
whichever way you see fit) and use this to promote your product or
service. By using these reviews when they are still new, customers
will have a better idea of what to expect.

Use these positive reviews on all forms of promotional material
you have, including your website, social media pages and updates,
your email marketing, blog posts, and more. Social media platforms
like Instagram are great for posting reviews, images of customers
enjoying your product or service, or any promotions throughout the
off-season. By styaing active online, customers will remember your
business when the time is right.

By being active online, customers will remember your business when the time is right.

Sources:
Really Good Emails

3. Continue to create good content.

Just because it’s the off-season, does not mean your content
has to suffer. You may not have time to create good
quality, relevant content
while business is buzzing, so use
this time to get to work updating the content on your website,
social media pages, email marketing, and any other promotional
material. Even in the off-season, you can still create compelling
content that your audience will love. This helps to add credibility
to your brand, set your business up as an expert in the field, and
build good relationships with your target audience.

4. Get social.

You should stay connected to your customers and leads throughout
the year—not just during the peak season—and social media is
one of the best and easiest ways to do it.

On top of your website, potential customers browse your
social media
feeds to get more information on your business,
from your updates to your photos and general engagement with the
audience. This means that your business should start taking social
media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, and
LinkedIn very seriously—after all, these platforms are where most
customers get their information.

Use your social media platforms to engage with followers,
promote special offers, show off reviews, share exciting content,
run competitions, and generate hype for the next season.

Use your social media platforms to engage with followers, promote special offers, show off reviews, share exciting content, run competitions, and generate hype for the next season.

Sources:
Really Good Emails

5. Don’t forget email marketing.

While email marketing can be successful year-round, do so with
caution during your off-season, as your recipients may not be in
the mood to engage with off-season promoters. Use email marketing
during this period, but not as frequently as you would during peak
times. When you do send out emails to your database, be sure to
deliver high-value content that piques the interest of potential
customers when the season picks up again.

6. Generate hype for the peak season.

Just because your product or service is not necessarily relevant
during the off-season, it doesn’t mean you can’t generate
interest and excitement about your business. Generate hype around
your business by delivering cool, fun, and unique content to
people’s inboxes, on your website, and through social media
platforms.

Combine all the previous pointers to generate the right kind of
interest and excitement for things to come. Use this time to
advertise early bird specials, off-season discounts, fun
promotions, and more. These off-season specials put you top-of-mind
to your audience and also get feet through the door during a time
when you need the business the most.

These off-season specials can not only put you top-of-mind to your audience, but can also get feet through the door during a time when you need the business the most.

Source:
Really Good Emails

7. Consider the locals.

Never forget about the locals. If your business is
tourist-driven, it means that you could only be targeting
out-of-towners looking for a unique experience or product that only
your business can provide. But what about the locals? Once the
visitors leave, you will have to depend on the locals to keep
things going until the peak season hits once more.

By offering special sales and discounts to locals, you expand
your target audience and bring in some business after the majority
of the crowds leave. In this way, you maintain a good relationship
with customers who are there to support your business throughout
the year.

8. Tend to your backlog.

Perhaps you have a lengthy to-do list that you haven’t had a
chance to get to because business has been good. The off-season is
the perfect time to tackle things you’ve been putting off. This
can include cleaning up your database, revamping your website,
boosting your social media profiles, and researching potential new
leads. Instead of closing up shop during the off-season, use this
time to improve your resources that will free your time during the
busy season and boost your marketing arsenal and profits when peak
season comes around.

9. Consider your niche audience.

Sometimes working with a smaller target audience is more
effective for your business. Instead of targeting the masses, take
the time to focus on the smaller, dedicated audience you know will
come back. Trying to grab everyone’s attention can be
counterproductive, as your efforts can go unnoticed. However, your
niche audience will appreciate the attention if you find unique
ways to generate interest and drive purchases. Engage with your
niche audience to make them feel valued and they may quickly
convert into regular customers.

Wrap up

Just because the season is over, does not mean your marketing
has to be. By using this period to your advantage, you can build
your brand while engaging with past customers and encouraging
potential customers.

Key takeaways:

  • The off-season may not be bringing in much business, but it is
    the perfect time to concentrate on your marketing efforts
  • If done correctly, off-season marketing can boost your sales
    and profits for the next season
  • Off-season marketing creates top of mind awareness and gets you
    ahead of the competition
  • There are many considerations and avenues you can implement to
    develop a successful off-season marketing strategy

Email marketing is a good way to generate interest and keep your
brand top of mind during the off-season.
Check out this guide
that lets you create your email marketing
plan and build completely branded, customized emails
automatically—perfect for launching your email marketing
campaigns during the off-season.

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9 Off-Season Marketing Strategies for Seasonal Businesses

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Source: FS – Email Marketing Blogs!
9 Off-Season Marketing Strategies for Seasonal Businesses