AMiable Solution #434: Marketing Off-Season
Updated: Jan 27, 2022
This week, we’ve enjoyed some unseasonably warm days, days spent outdoors without the usual December attire: heavy coats, gloves, and hats.
And we’re loving it.
Why? For the same reasons consumers welcome marketing about off-season products or services: it’s unexpected. It’s a change of pace. It reminds us what we have to look forward to.
While your business may not have distinctly “seasonal” seasons, as in summer-, fall-, winter-, or spring-based services or products, your operations most certainly have distinct and predictable peaks or periods of higher sales volume.
Maybe it’s an annual fundraiser. Maybe it’s tied to the federal government’s fiscal year. Or maybe your peaks relate to an academic calendar or holiday or weather pattern. Whatever drives your busiest season, you can benefit from off-season marketing to help build-up and drive your “on” season.
Build a Competitive Edge. Promoting products or services, or simply just your company, before the “big need” appears on your customers’ radars not only helps to keep you top-of-mind during times when a particular offer or service isn’t needed, but it also keeps your mailing list and list of engaged prospects up-to-date. The off-season is a great time to build your mailing list, raise brand awareness, identify new needs, develop new services, and test your offers, language, and campaigns before your competitors start marketing.
How can you do that? Postcards, letters, and emails are all effective and relatively inexpensive ways to maintain communication with prospects and customers without breaking the budget. You can showcase reviews and testimonials. Run contests. Conduct short but strategic surveys. Request referrals. Anything you can do to keep customers listening and looking for your communications–no matter what time of year–will help you when the busy season hits.
Build Anticipation and Excitement. Your keystone product may not be updated for another six months, but that doesn’t mean you can’t start building excitement for it. And it doesn’t mean you can’t start offering discounts or new content. Whether you strategically plan a great reveal or drop little nuggets of hints or helps over the course of several weeks or months, staying in touch with customers keeps them both curious and educated. Reassured and put on alert. Taken care of and informed.