5 Summertime Marketing Ideas for Small Businesses

Summertime marketing campaigns are in full-effect now that the 4th of July holiday has passed. Small businesses can use some simple and creative tactics of their own to better optimize their summer selling and to execute relevance and interest in the eyes of their target audiences.

Here are 5 helpful tricks to consider for successful summer marketing.

1. Send Out Summer Swag

Seriously, who wouldn’t love a FREE pool tote, indestructible cool shades or an oversized beach towel? With the spike in temperature comes beach-bound weekends, pool-side barbecues and wine & cheese nights under the stars… so it’s always a smart little trick to entice your audience with free summer swag.

And of course, slap on your brand name or logo and voila! You’re summer giveaway product just metamorphosed into a moving ad campaign and a go-to reminder of your brand.

VICTORIA SECRET: PINK TUMBLER GIVEAWAY

Victoria Secret over the last several years has mastered this fine art of tempting swag giveaways, that really drive the average sale upwards of $75. They usually promise a free giveaway product, ranging from umbrellas in winter, summer beach totes and back-to-school duffle bags. Their latest campaign offers a pink Victoria Secret cooler tumbler with any PINK product purchase.

Knowing that most young girls who love the casual line of PINK products will adore a PINK tumbler poolside or at their desk, it’s a smart giveaway to gently secure a sale.

2. Switch Up Your Marketing Techniques

It’s easy for small businesses to get comfortable with their marketing routine and same avenues of promoting their business. Often times, even their content becomes stagnant and essentially glossed over by audiences for having somewhat of a ‘bore’ factor.

Switching up your marketing methodology to try new channels of communication, as well as sometimes different content, varying offers and promotions might just be what the doctor ordered for successful summer marketing.

If your business usually relies on sending coupons, try to host a local summer event inviting your audience to you for a more hands on experience, or vice versa. If your business is only growing primarily due to word of mouth, try using social media networking or email offers to see how they might work for you.

KIDS AHOY: NEW ACTIVITIES CAMPAIGN

A small local business in Los Angeles, Kids Ahoy, a kid’s indoor playgym, has demonstrated just what switching up marketing techniques can bring to the table. No longer are the days of mere two for one deals or a coupon for a month’s membership off. Kids on summer break demand more and Kids Ahoy understands their market precisely.

Their latest email promotion introduced a summer morning breakfast with Elsa from Frozen, among the other perks with admission, ranging from crafts to face painting, etc. Their offers to appeal to their subscribership and are anything but boring emails to parents’ inboxes.

3. Bring Something Back for Summer

Sometimes, businesses think of summer as a time to purge the old and bring in new, fresh, clean, bright, energetic, taste-bud awakening, stimulating new items. Of course, this method is tried and true and while it makes sense, sometimes the opposite might work just as effectively- bring back the OLD!

Where an item in the past, a product or a menu item was popular, displayed high demand and drove sales, it might have the same power to devise the same effect  in the summer time. Try bringing it back for a limited time in the summer. Bringing something old back for a limited time can do one of two things.

First, it lets your audience know that this was popular and successful in the months before, which creates an organic curiosity to it and nature affinity. Second, by limiting it to the summer season adds a sense of urgency and heightened need to ‘get it while its still available.’

MCDONALDS: MONOPOLY GAME

Every so often, McDonald’s brings back the McDonald’s Monopoly game, most recently in sticker form, as a sweepstakes sales promotion. They first started the sweepstakes game in the late 80’s, and have brought it back a number of times, sometimes displaying a different name, like Monopoly Best Chance Game or Monopoly: Pick Your Prize!, but always resting on the same game principles.

The franchise truly understands the inner workings of sweepstakes and how they draw customers into their restaurant locations across the world. It’s a classic example of bringing something back for summer.

4. Special Summer Hours

Consider adjusting your business hours to accommodate the times people are actually out and about. Given the summer scalding heat, air conditioners are pumping in full force until later in the evening when it often cools down.

So you might want to consider extending your hours to accommodate those special summer night owls. And vice versa also applies, where if you know its a summer long weekend and your audience is probably out of town, you might want to wait until the weekend passes and they are back in their offices at home before sending your next lines of communication.

MENCHIES: ICE CREAM HAPPY HOUR

Menchie’s, a popular frozen yogurt chain, has started offering somewhat of a happy hour promotion after 9PM until midnight for all you can pour ice cream at a flat fee of $5. Whereas, typically, the cost of ice crea per person would be weighed and measured in ounces, this essentially offers a price break for late night patrons, making the most out of otherwise lost time with the store being closed.

5. Summer Clearance Sale

The most commonly used summertime marketing idea for all businesses alike is the classic summer clearance. It is worth taking a moment to remind you about why.

A summer clearance speaks to target audiences because even at a single first glance, they already know they are gaining something of value- a discount on your product that they already would probably otherwise want. It’s a built-in trust mechanism that drives this simple tactic that you see being used across the channels.

OLD NAVY: CLEARANCE ALERT: 1000’s of STYLES FOR $5 OR LESS

A well recognized American clothing retailer GAP, operates several notable divisions, including Banana Republic, Piperlime, Athleta and Old Navy. Each one of these divisions has mastered the art of summer marketing, with their timely sales and creative super promotions that absolutely grab your attention in the inbox.

The latest Old Navy campaign is a certain summer charmer, with its bright bold colors and block letters “SUMMER CLEARANCE- THOUSANDS OF ITEMS $5 AND UNDER.” Without even clicking further, its already a given that you’ll be getting a great deal on anything you order.”

So there’s really no reason to wait on fine tuning your summer marketing regimen. 

Happy Summer,
The RedCappi Team