How To Market Your Small Business During Slower Seasons

How To Market Your Small Business During Slower Seasons

Growing Your Business All Year Round

As your Southern California digital marketing and advertising experts, the GoMarketing team has worked with small and medium-sized businesses all over Ventura and Los Angeles County. One of the challenges many local businesses face today is remaining relevant via digital content and online presence. A couple of the most common questions our marketing managers receive from our clients include:

  • In what ways can I truly make the most of my business’ slower season?
  • How do I keep growing my business during lulls and slower markets?

More often than not, smaller businesses will want to pause their digital marketing services when cutting their expenses during a slower season. However, this short-term solution can do more harm than good for your SEO and overall online presence in the long run.

Rather than neglecting your digital marketing efforts, we have some savvy suggestions for your business, so you can keep growing amidst lulls and slower traffic. Read on to learn how to bolster your business all year round!

Marketing For More Business Tomorrow

When your local business hits a wall during slower months and seasons, it may seem like SEO and web traffic aren’t reaping the returns you hoped it would. However, online exposure is critical for smaller brands such as yourself. When business plateaus, it’s time to double your efforts onscreen and off screen. Here’s how you can continue to boost your brand throughout the year–straight from the digital marketing experts at GoMarketing!

Expand Your Offerings (And Sources Of Income)

During a lull or slower season for your small business, promoting the same old services isn’t going to cut it. This is not a matter of the medium (i.e. your website or social media); it’s a matter of the focus of your content. If this is the case for your local brand, you should consider diversifying your offerings and sources of income.

Remember:

Cutting expenses too drastically during slower months may inhibit your business’ growth and ability to prepare for your busier and busiest seasons. Instead of simply reducing expenses, try thinking of new ideas to earn more income.

Allow your small business to expand even during the off-season with some new offering and earning opportunities such as these:

  • Construction companies can add insulation to homes during the winter season.
  • Accountants can help other businesses with their payroll or bookkeeping during their busier seasons.
  • Retailers can sell beach-themed products or merch in preparation for summer.
  • HVAC companies can offer preventative maintenance and preparation during the autumn and spring for months with more extreme temperatures.
  • Property management companies can offer additional resources or merch at slower moving periods for rental markets such as autumn and winter.

Keep in mind that your business ought to test out newer services and offerings, so you can streamline the additional labor and resources these earning opportunities can require. While you should definitely generate new ideas for promoting your business and increasing your income during lulls, avoid overextending you and your staff when it comes to new products and services and untapped markets.

Work Smarter, Not Harder

When your small business encounters a lull, it is also a slower season for your local competitors. Reaching potential leads and customers while your competition is quiet can give your business an advantage that pays off during peak season. Even during slower months, don’t be afraid to start a conversation with your target audience on digital platforms. Consider the following campaigns that will sustain interest in your brand all year round:

  • Exclusive pricing for social media followers and/or email contacts
  • Sneak peeks at products, services, and/or promotions before your busy season
  • Loyalty and rewards programs that will boost your cash flow for the rest of the year

Work Smarter Not Harder

Research Trends

After your peak season(s) is a great time and opportunity for your team to conduct market research that will prepare you for the upcoming year. These days, social media is an invaluable tool for remaining relevant when it comes to new trends and cultural shifts. From new devices and gadgets to the latest and greatest in entertainment, online channels are a resource for your business to stay aware and fresh.

Depending on the social media platforms your business is signed up with, here is a small guide for accessing more information about content, products, and services that are in high-demand through these public forums!

Twitter

Upon logging into Twitter, you’ll see a sidebar to the left labeled “Trends for You,” which is a curated channel for trending products and what people are talking about the most. For further research, simply type in different subjects related to your particular industry or niche such as “property management” or “A/C maintenance”, and you’ll be able to see what others are saying about these topics on Twitter.

Facebook

Undoubtedly the most popular social media platform, Facebook also includes a trending section accessible from the right sidebar of your dashboard. Due to this platform’s prevalence and focus on connecting people (rather than ideas), your business will be able to find popular pages or groups that will help your business better reach and appeal to target markets.

Pinterest

Relevant as ever, many people use their Pinterest profiles as a visual inspiration board to save products, services, and ideas that they love for themselves and friends. To use this channel as a research tool, just type in something that describes your brand offering to see what people are “pinning” and saving to their own profiled to get an idea about what is popular in your niche.

When in doubt, don’t be afraid to ask your audience about what type of content they want to see or what product/services are their most favorite. You can do this in the form of surveys or polls on Facebook or Instagram!

Keep Your Home Services Businesses Operating All Year

Even in Southern California, business tends to slow down for home service enterprises during the colder months of autumn and winter. Give your small business a competitive edge by tapping into service offerings that accommodate wintertime demands. You might be surprised by how many cold(er) season services naturally coincide with your main offering(s).

If you’re a local home service company looking to stay relevant throughout autumn and winter, try the following ideas to increase exposure–and profits!

  • Holiday Light Installation
  • Building Interior Rehabilitation
  • Home Energy Audits
  • Adding Extra Insulation
  • Additional Services That Help Reduce Utility Bills

Keep Your Businesses Home Services Operating All Year

Get Strategic About Your Digital Marketing

Rather than canceling or pausing your digital marketing efforts during a business slump, try spending more time on your strategy so that it is optimized for converting your ideal customer. This will increase the probability and occurrence of new and returning customers spending more on additional services, retaining them for future solutions, and generating positive reviews and referrals. In addition to implementing a rewards or loyalty program, consider highlighting products/services that are natural upsells.

Make Time For Trade Shows + Conferences

Let’s face it: during a slower month or season, you and your staff will have a bit more time on your hands. Consider further investing this free time into your business in the form of trade shows, which are wonderful opportunities for networking and referrals. Keep in mind that fellow exhibitors can serve as valuable inspiration for ideas and/or solutions that can help cut costs or make your business run more efficiently, leading to long-term cash flow improvements that reduce seasonal impact and fluctuations in the long run.

Set-Up Events And/Or Teach Seminars

Whether your business is product or service-based, your staff has valuable knowledge and first-hand experience that can help potential customers and position your brand as an industry expert. Engage your audience during slower months by providing answers to their burning questions via local classes or seminars. Keep in mind that setting up a teaching event can not only attract more exposure and work, it can also be an opportunity for revenue and profit.

If you’re a small business with a particular industry niche, consider the following ideas for increasing knowledge and brand awareness:

  • Speaking at a local community college
  • Holding classes for industry newcomers
  • Creating events that educate consumers
  • Facilitating classes for DIY (Do-It-Yourself) projects
  • Hosting events for fellow industry professionals
  • Throwing open houses or mixers for consumers, brokers or agents

Join A Professional Group + Association

The benefits of reciprocity and fellowship that association memberships and partnerships offer can be invaluable in helping you gain new customers and spread brand awareness–not to mention enhancing your business’ reputation. Consider joining up with your city’s Chamber of Commerce and/or attending meetings or conferences held by national/regional industry groups for further networking opportunities!

Additional Off-Season Ideas

Need some smaller scale seasonal marketing ideas on-the-go? Here are some quick ideas for your business to try when it encounters a slow period or lull!

  • Off-Season Specials
  • Flash Sales
  • One-Day Sales
  • Limited Time Offers
  • Upsells
  • Rewards
  • Loyalty Packages
  • Early Bird Specials + Discounts
  • Special Contests + Giveaways
  • Referral + Rewards Programs
  • Discount Coupons
  • Gift Card Rewards
  • Grow Online Reviews + Testimonials
  • Special Events For Loyal Customers
  • Sneak Previews
  • Expand Geo-Target Markets
  • Consumer To Corporate
  • Partner Up With Local Businesses
  • Low Or No-Cost Marketing
  • Email Newsletters + Marketing

Do you have any additional questions about how to market your small business during slow months and seasons? Contact GoMarketing today with any inquiries or to learn more about our digital marketing and advertising solutions! Call us at 805.413.7893.