Off-Season: How to Market Efficiently During This Time

Melanie asked a great question about what she can be doing to better market her business when it’s a seasonal location and they are closed for a period of time. I know this is the case with a lot of different types of businesses, so I thought it would be appropriate for learning how to make the off-season a little more sexy.

Melanie writes:

I run a seasonal non-profit, so right now we are closed. But we are trying to stay relevant to our audience by giving value and meeting our mission of getting people excited about the ocean. I guess my question is how do I build an audience over the winter (“jab jab jab”) so when we open again we have a great following, momentum, pumped and excited people to come to the aquarium (“right hook”)?

If you’re thinking about what you can be doing in the off-season, you’re already ahead of most businesses. Time for the fun marketing, that’s for sure!

It’s so in sync with why social media exists anyway. You’re there to get to know people, learn what’s important to them and build a relationship accordingly (and hopefully strategically). So during the off season when you don’t have that big transactional call to action, you can have smaller ways of getting involved with your company by providing them value and then having them stay tuned.

The best thing you can do is listen to people. What do they do during the off-seasons that complements what you’re doing? If they can’t be at your facility, where are they instead.  Those brands would probably make good partners, by the way. How can you help each other so you’re always in front of your similar audience?

What content do people want to know that would be interested in coming to your aquarium. Or if they don’t know they’re interested in the ocean yet, how can you make the content interesting so they’ll consume and support your brand? These analogies work across the board and your down season may be the best time for you to think about it because you’re not under enormous pressure to just get people in the door. It’s all hard social work and takes time. And time is what you have when you’re no open for business.

What do you think about seasonal business models? How have you marketed that work for them? Share in the comments.