The seasons define what we wear, what we eat and even how we spend our money. Marketing campaigns at Christmas all capitalise on certain very specific aspects of the holiday period. Similarly, Halloween and Easter have their own well-established tropes. Summer is a little different. Though it doesn’t necessarily lead up to one event, like the other examples here, it does come with its own distinctive set of language and imagery that can used to make your campaigns a little sunnier. Here are ten marketing tips that are perfect for summer sales and marketing.
1. Be Positive
Everybody loves the sunshine. Life seems that little bit nicer under the warm glow of an inviting summer sun and this is reflected in campaigns at this time of year. Upbeat language with a celebratory tone and even direct references to great weather will help you to stay on trend with your copy or video content. Negative, sarcastic or overly emotional campaigns rarely do well summer, so try and keep it light.
2. Appeal to your customers playful side
Summertime makes us think of lazy afternoons in the garden with family or games of volleyball with friends on the beach. Even if you’re selling software for spreadsheets, it can help to inject a touch of levity into your campaigns, so you encapsulate the playful, fun atmosphere of the season. Puns about the sun, comedic copy and plenty of bright, warm colour will generally serve you well, no matter what your business niche is.
3. Promote the Right Products
Let’s face it, trying to sell snowboarding jackets or antifreeze in July can be difficult. It’s important to pay attention to what people need more of at this time of year. Clothing manufacturers will probably want to push their vests, t shirts, sandals and sun hats whereas as restaurants may want to switch their heavy, warming dishes for light, seasonal salads. Even if you only have limited scope to make these kinds of adjustments, pushing certain items or services as “summer specials” can work wonders.
4. Festivals, Concerts, Parties and Sporting Events
Though there’s no summer equivalent to Christmas day but this season is full of music festivals and other large-scale events that marketing professionals can use to enrich their content. Mentioning some of the more popular events such as Burning Man, Wimbledon or Glastonbury can be a great way to improve your short-term SEO and helps you to connect with your audiences’ human side. Sporting events can be especially effective and even a quick blog post that mentions a heavily searched phrase can work wonders. The key is to capitalise on high profile, well known events in a way that works for your business.
5. Your imagery should reflect the weather
An overcast sky above an industrial landscape can be incredibly dramatic, but in the middle of heatwave, most people will find this a little confusing. Try to match your imagery with the current climate. Sunny yellows and oranges against lush greens and blues can be a great combination and pale, pastel shades will create a calming, uplifting effect on your audience. Though this doesn’t have to apply to all your design work, it can be a useful tactic in the warmer months of the year.
6. Vacation Themed Campaigns
Many people take their annual vacation during the summer, so it’s the perfect time to post blogs about packing suitcases for trips away, how to plan for long haul flights or even simple things like catering for family get togethers. Essentially, try to stay away from dry or downbeat topics as this will seem at odds with most of the other marketing content that’s out there. Though many people won’t be working as much at this time of year, they will still be receptive to marketing campaigns, especially if they feel they’re relevant to their own experiences.
7. Start Your Christmas and Winter Campaign Early
This might seem utterly ridiculous but there are several companies who do this very successfully every year. Firstly, this approach stands out for being unusual and secondly, it will be something people remember in months to come, when they begin to see the inevitable winter campaigns roll out. Appealing to people who like to be prepared is a great tactic and offering “early bird” discounts or special offers on out of season items can be extremely effective.
8. Consider Changing Your Opening Hours
If you experience longer daylight hours and a subsequent increase in foot traffic, it makes sense to extend your opening hours at this time of year. Many bars, restaurants and even retailers do this to compensate for a drop off in sales in the colder months. This can be punishing on staff and challenging to manage but if there are customers willing to use your services or buy your products after the end of the “traditional” working day, it makes sense to give them the opportunity to do so.
9. Flash Sales and Discounts
For old stock or end of season lines, flash sales and discounts can be a great way of clearing some room while generating some cash at the same time. Generally, people are more receptive to flash sales in the summer months as the good weather can considerably improve their mood. Reduced items from last season can also be appealing, especially for those on a lower budget.
10. Take Some Time Off
If your business naturally slows down at this time of year, why not close for a while? It can be tempting to keep going, especially if you’re just getting started, but staff costs, bills and other expenses can mean that its more effort than it’s worth to keep trading during quieter, warmer months. Planning vacations during this period is something most people do, so unless you experience your busiest days around this time of year, it isn’t worth torturing yourself for the sake of a few sales.