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Should You Really Give Your Marketing a Holiday?

It’s that time of year when many people are thinking about, or actually going on holiday. A number of people I speak to tell me that all their prospective clients will be away now for the next few months, on holiday, so there’s no point in doing any marketing. They give their marketing a holiday for a few months and start again in September.

Will your marketing get a long holiday this summer? Is this really a good idea?

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you’ll know that I’m really passionate about helping small businesses to avoid the feast and famine rollercoaster that so many get stuck on. This is where you do lots of marketing – you go to loads of networking events, make plenty of calls or send out an email campaign. As a result, the new clients flock in and you become really busy looking after them. So busy, in fact, that you find you don’t have enough time to keep doing your regular marketing. You stop attending the networking meetings and don’t worry about making any more follow up calls, or sending many emails. But that’s OK, isn’t it, as you have plenty of work to keep you busy. Or do you? Suddenly you realize that these projects are coming to an end and that you don’t have any more work – or income – to take their place. So you decide to rush around and do some more marketing. Except that it has to be the low cost variety, as you’re a bit short of money, due to having no work coming in. And so the cycle goes on, as you ride the feast and famine rollercoaster.

If you give your marketing a holiday for the summer, by the time you get to September, you’ll be at the bottom of the rollercoaster, facing a long, slow, tricky climb back up to the top.

How do you avoid the rollercoaster?

The simple trick to avoiding the ups and downs of running your business is to plan your marketing carefully. Make sure that you always find the time to do a bit every week, no matter how busy you are. Here’s how you can do this:

  • Only plan to do the marketing you actually have time for. I write a blog post every week (you can see them here) because I love writing and I have the time to write a post every week. You might not have time to write a blog every week, so decide what you do have time to do. One blog post each month is better than writing lots of posts when you have time and not writing any when you’re too busy. Decide what you can manage and be consistent.
  • Use a simple tool to plan your marketing. Being a visual person, I like flip charts on the office wall, with different colours showing the dates of events, or reminders of what needs to be done when. Even if there’s only you in your office, having a visual reminder will help you hold yourself to account. If you can share your plan with other people, they can help make sure that you meet your targets. The image in this blog is the current flip chart we have on the wall at Appletree HQ, to help us plan the launch of our new marketing course in September 2016.
  • Come up with a seasonal offer. This year, every issue of Scribbles has had a seasonal theme and you can do the same with your marketing. Get creative and think about what your clients and prospects need from you at this time of the year. If you’re a Coach, you could help your clients to plan for a new goal in September. September is also a good time to start with a new Business Plan, so if you’re a Business Consultant, why not offer prospects the opportunity to work with you over the summer, to have a new plan in place for the new term? If you need any help coming up with creative marketing ideas, set me the challenge and I’ll see what I can think up for you!

Don’t give your marketing a holiday. Not everyone will be away for the whole of July and August (unless they’ve got their businesses so sorted that they can take so much time off!) Keep doing a bit of marketing every week and you’ll find that come September, you’ll be in a much better position than many of your competitors, who took too much time off their marketing over the summer.

If you’d like to receive Scribbles for free, direct to your inbox every month, with all the advice and tips that it comes with, just fill in the form here on the Appletree website and we’ll send it to you!

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