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Catch Up on Marketing: 43 Things to Do During Downtime

Catch Up on Marketing: 43 Things to Do During Downtime

By Rieva Lesonsky, Guest Blogger
Published: August 16, 2018 Updated: August 17, 2018

Summertime, and the livin’ is easy. For many small business owners, August’s steamy days bring a brief lull before things pick up again in the fall. That makes now a good time to catch up on some marketing activities you’ve been putting on the back burner. Here are 43 things you can do during your August downtime that will have a big impact come fall.

Your Customers

  1. Schedule catch-up calls or lunch with your biggest clients to see how you can better serve them in the coming year.
  2. Reach out to a former customer who’s fallen off your radar and see if you can win their business again.
  3. Check in with a prospect you’ve been nurturing to see if you can get them closer to a sale.
  4. Gather client testimonials you can use in your marketing materials.
  5. Ask your best customers for referrals.
  6. Create some case studies to show how your product or service helps your customers.
  7. Enlist some satisfied clients to feature in a marketing video for your business.
  8. Collect before-and-after pictures from clients to show off your work, and get permission to use them in your marketing materials.
  9. Make your lists for sending holiday gifts and cards to customers.

Your Website
Dig into your website analytics. Find out:

  1. Where most of your website visitors are coming from.
  2. Which web pages they spend the most time on.
  3. Which pages generate the most leads.
  4. Which pages have the highest bounce rate.
  5. Use this information to fine-tune your online marketing, landing pages, and calls to action.
  6. Go through your website to make sure all the information (phone numbers, FAQs, etc.) is current and accurate.
  7. Check all links to make sure they work and are current.
  8. Go through your listings on local search directories, such as Google My Business, to make sure they are current and that your name, address, and phone (NAP) information is consistent across all listings.

Your Email Marketing

  1. Clean up your email list.
  2. Brainstorm new ideas for adding names to your email list.
  3. Segment your email list in two different types of customers.
  4. Review your email analytics. What can you do differently to make your email marketing more effective?

Your Community

  1. Get together with non-competing local business owners to share marketing ideas.
  2. Team up with your local Chamber of Commerce, business association, or other local business organization to plan group promotions for the holiday season.
  3. Attend a networking organization you haven't been to before.
  4. Find a charitable organization for your business to support.
  5. Look for a nonprofit community group that your business can get involved with.
  6. Make a list of upcoming community events your business could sponsor or participate in.
  7. Research tradeshows to attend in the coming year, either as an exhibitor or an attendee.

Thought Leadership

  1. Research community organizations or industry associations that might be interested in hearing you speak.
  2. Contact a blogger who’s a big name in your industry, or influential with your target market, to see if you can write a guest post for them.
  3. Join or start a LinkedIn group relevant to your target customers and contribute to the discussion.
  4. Start a business blog on your website to share your expertise.

Administrative/Organization

  1. Review your marketing materials, both print and digital. Toss/delete outdated logos, images, bios, etc.
  2. Scan and digitize print materials whenever possible and toss paper copies.
  3. Organize your marketing-related files in a way that makes sense to both you and your team so everything is easy to find when you need it.

Big Picture

  1. Determine what marketing method has the biggest impact on your business (social media? Email? Paid search advertising?), and learn everything you possibly can about it until you’re an expert.
  2. Choose a marketing method you want to use, but aren’t sure how to execute, and learn enough about the basics to give it a try.
  3. Review your marketing budget.
  4. Update your marketing plan.
  5. Create or update a marketing calendar.
  6. Research marketing automation software tools that could help streamline your marketing.

Get Help

  1. If you never seem to have enough time for marketing, determine which marketing duties you could outsource. Then look for a freelancer, part- or full-time employee, or local marketing firm to help.
  2. No budget to hire or outsource? Contact marketing professors at a local college or university and ask if they can take your business on as part of a class project.

Doing even a few of these marketing-related tasks will put your business ahead of the competition when fall rolls around.

About the Author:

Rieva Lesonsky
Rieva Lesonsky

Guest Blogger

Rieva Lesonsky is CEO and President of GrowBiz Media, a media company that helps entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses. Follow Rieva at Twitter.com/Rieva and visit SmallBizDaily.com to sign up for her free TrendCast reports. She's been covering small business and entrepreneurial issues for more than 30 years, is the author of several books about entrepreneurship and was the editorial director of Entrepreneur magazine for over two decades