A business's off-season is an excellent opportunity for marketing and strategizing, especially since you need to continue advertising to maintain brand awareness. You can't stop your efforts, as there are several marketing tasks to complete before peak season arrives. Once your season starts, it's too late to catch up with the competition — content marketing is among them.
Content marketing has become a key player in advertising, with 82% of marketers actively using it, and for 40% of marketers, it is an essential part of their overall marketing strategy. Furthermore, 24% of marketers plan to increase their content marketing investment in the coming years.
Here's how you can use content marketing to keep your leads alive as peak season begins to wind down and the off-season approaches.
Nurture New Leads from Peak Season
Your peak season is a fantastic opportunity to develop new leads and grow your database or subscribers through various efforts, including contests and surveys — which you can nurture through consistent email marketing. After peak season ends, this is a great time to keep those customers engaged and nurture leads throughout your slow season.
You can provide value and information for new customers while sending off-season deals and promotions, along with written blog content to better educate these consumers on the many facets of your business. However, the timing of your emails is crucial, especially during your off-season. It's vital to strike a balance between reminding customers about your brand and annoying them with information.
You want to keep your brand in their minds without sending so many emails it makes anyone unsubscribe. In the early part of your off-season, it's optimal to send an email every other month, then increase their frequency as your season nears. The closer it gets to your season, the more relevant your information is. Increase your email frequency to one per week leading up to your season to build excitement and inform customers of your offerings and promotions.
Tap Into Customer's Off-Season Research
When you tap into your customer's off-season research, you provide quality content on your blog or informative videos that help your business appear in customer searches when they're researching things to purchase for your season. A lawn care company may not need to email content throughout the winter months unless they offer snow removal. However, homeowners are always looking forward to the warmer weather and the upkeep they'll need when it comes time.
Sending updates about seasonal changes, such as the optimal times to plant or fertilize your lawn, is incredibly helpful to the local community. Content like that will provide value, show your company is knowledgeable, and encourage customers to sign up for your services.
Providing consistent content throughout these times increases your credibility by showing customers that your expertise on the topic is legitimate. Again, think of someone researching winter boots during the fall. Sure, they don't need them yet, but a company with much more content on what will be popular this winter is going to acquire much more credibility than one that is less well-known.
Name recognition is important for 71% of consumers before they make purchasing decisions. Content marketing off-season gives your brand that recognition.
Increase Excitement for Your Brand
Another great advantage is that you can use content marketing to generate excitement by informing people when your season is. Do this by creating content that generates excitement for your products or services before the big day. You can use videos or podcasts to provide a behind-the-scenes look by making content showing audiences how you make your products and giving sneak peeks and advice on what they can expect.
A great example of making content your audience will love is when a skiing company decides to publish blog posts about great skiing destinations, tips for preparing for the new skiing season, and other topics surrounding history, events, or equipment in skiing.
Another great way to increase the excitement for your brand with content marketing is to do interviews with experts, influencers, and idols in the industry. Sticking to the same topic of skiing could mean sitting down with Skiing athletes like Lindsey Vonn and Bill Demong or a popular Instagram skiing influencer like Mikaela Shiffrin.
Get their opinions on the best destinations and tips for the sport. Your audience would love this, and be sure to give you the time of day since their favorite athletes (in this case) thought you were worth the time.
Keep Your Audience Primed for Other Advertising
Content marketing increased loyalty for 68% of marketers, but 56% of businesses noticed it also increased event attendance. By continuing a brand-consumer bond that was likely started in-season, nurturing it, and getting consumers excited for another season, you're able to build on your performance during the following seasons. Better yet, marketing can drum interest during your off-season, so audiences are primed for other advertising like radio shortly before your season begins. It further increases consumer anticipation and engagement and ensures that your brand is top-of-mind over the competition when it matters most.