As we wave goodbye to summer, we welcome the perfect opportunity to harvest new opportunities for fall. Students have returned to school, people are home from vacation and your customers are ready for a fresh start! It’s also the time where we celebrate back to school campaigns, the significance of harvesting, pumpkin spice lattes, cooling temperatures, Thanksgiving (October for Canadians and November for Americans) and of course, everyone’s favourite spooky occasion — Hallowe’en!
For many small to medium-sized businesses, this time of year rakes in plenty of great marketing opportunities. Fall is the time of year that best represents when people are most focused on their work and maximizing their time. It’s also when customers will have the most time to pursue various types of services that they were more likely to put on hold during the summer. The bulk of us have returned to school or work with an increased readiness to be productive, set goals and book appointments that we may have been sleeping on during the sunnier months.
And hey, this stuff is even in the books. Most agricultural societies have widely regarded fall as the season of harvesting and prepping for year-long survival, which means that it may even be in the deepest layers of our psyche to treat this time of year as one where we get down to business.
Here are some of the best marketing tips we’ve piled up for the season:
Market Your Platforms To Suit The Season
To keep your services current and engaging, your content and language should change with each season and holiday. For example, changing your Facebook cover photo each season lets your customers know that you are staying current with business trends (and celebrating where your sales are going, too). Making sure that your social media marketing and web platform are regularly updated is key at any time of year.
Updating your profile or any of your other web platforms with pictures of leaves, turkeys, pumpkins, ghosts or bright, rich fall colours is also a great way to gauge your customers’ attention and remind them to check out your products and services. Even better if you use catchy, leafy imagery to help direct them to a new discount, deal or fall campaign you’re holding!
Keep Your Customers Connected and Engaged
You may have a list of clients that have signed up for your services, opted into a deal or become “regulars”. However, keeping in touch with your customers is still a key factor in ensuring they can always reach you and that they’re kept up-to-date with any important updates about your business. The start of fall may bring in more calls from students who are looking to squeeze in services between their class times, customers looking to set up their heating system as temperatures cool or families looking to rid their backyard of excess leaf buildup. The possibilities for connecting around this time of year are plentiful.
Making sure you stay on top of any customer requests is important when it comes to making sure your customers know they are important to you and your business. Staying connected with your customers is also pivotal in helping them choose your services over your competitors. Customers will always favour a business that offers them not just their services, but their dedicated time and support as well.
If you want to take your customer dedication to the next level, many of your customers will also value being asked for their feedback on your products or services. As supporters of your business, they’ll be able to provide you with informed opinions that can help you figure out new marketing tactics, new services, additional features and more. Sending a survey to your most loyal customers is often one of the best ways to gain valuable feedback from their experiences with your products or services. Surveys are a great way to pay special attention to their connection with your business, which in turn is a good way to make them feel valued and let them know that their input is taken seriously.
Let Your Customers Know You’re Thankful For Them
Offering your customers a referral bonus or reward for using your services will help solidify your loyalty. This time of year offers a great chance for you to give your most dedicated customers a deal that will convince them to revisit your services. This includes offering some sweet discounts, fun perks and exciting rewards. Better yet, they may also give back and refer their friends!
Furthermore, it is important to remember the importance of customer retention. By identifying your best customers, you have more leeway for business expansion and regular services that will help you steady your revenue stream.
Prepare For Winter
Winter is coming. And with it brings none other than holiday cheer… and spending. It’s time to prepare for cover!
The holiday season is arguably the biggest, most tumultuous season for marketers and consumers alike. This means that if you own a business that depends on its sales during the winter holidays, fall (especially the month of November) is the perfect time to really start preparing to end the year with a bang.
If you provide a service that is in high demand during the holiday season, now is the perfect time to evaluate your game plan and start raising the bar when it comes to your marketing initiatives and sales strategies. If your services involve selling products to consumers, this is the perfect time to start working hard on your merchandising and increasing your product inventory. And because fall is the time that precedes one of the busiest times of the year, the autumn months can be some of the most critical when it comes to determining how your business will hold up in the next year to come.
Take Advantage of the Busy Season
While some businesses will see a decrease in visitors or customer requests during the fall, others consider the season to their busiest time of the year. For example, the start of school signals multiple opportunities for business growth. Students returning to school tend to use this time to get their hair cut, scope out new spots to eat or study for midterms with their friends. People who may have had their summer reserved for vacationing or family plans will now be using this time to book a long-awaited dentist appointment, seek the top-rated fitness studio or wellness clinic in their area or consult the best repair service for a home system.
In fact, studies show that wellness clinics and private practices actually cite fall as the season they brace themselves for once summer starts reaching a close. As expected, most clinics or practices have a steep increase in booked appointments and practice activity. According to studies conducted by Owl Practice, private practices in Canada see a whopping 22 percent increase in average monthly sessions during the months of September, October and November.
Turn New Leaves For the Upcoming Year
If fall isn’t the busiest time of the year for your business, you can always use the downtime to start planning for the next year. During the fall, your business may start looking towards a smaller pool of customers when compared to the larger volumes it saw during the summer or winter months. If you are a small to medium-sized business, this time of year offers a chance for you to stand out amongst your competitors and get your customers excited before the holiday season rings in.
This time can be used efficiently if staff members take some time to strategize about ways to grow their business and the necessary steps needed. Remind yourself of your long-term goals and what your business is doing to make your customers happy. Perhaps even use this time to evaluate any feedback you’ve received from your customers. This should give you a better sense of what you’re doing right and what may need improvement when the new year rolls around.
Just Keep Planting Seeds
Studies suggest that workers get far more work accomplished during the fall than any other season. Task management software company Redbooth released a series of studies that were conducted after compiling four years’ worth of research on industry trends. The data reveals that the average worker is 20 percent more productive in the fall than at any other time of the year. Who would have thought?
For this reason, fall may be the very best time to launch your small business or come up with a new sales strategy to help give you the leg up you need against your competitors. Whether you are a new business owner or a seasoned one looking to expand your operations, fall is also the ideal time to strategize about the next new steps for your business and how to improve your overall strategy for the new year.
Reach Out To Us
We hope some of these marketing tips and insights will help you think over your business strategy and plant new seeds for the upcoming year! If you have any additional questions or are looking for tips and tricks on how to grow your small to medium-sized business, always feel free to reach out to our marketing team and we’ll be happy to help you out.