Well, don’t take it too easy if you are running your own business. Summertime is marketing retooling time. For some people, summertime is low season, although not for our realtor clients who are in high season now.
If it seems like you have a bit more time on your hands, utilize the time to knock of some of these important tasks:
Summer Reading: You may already do a lot of reading about your industry. Expand your horizons and do some really deep thinking while at work about various issues surrounding marketing and communication. Traackr (an online blog) suggests these books (among others): Optimize by Lee Odden about all kinds of marketing today and Human to Human: H2H by Bryan Kramer who discusses the interpersonal aspect of customers and marketing.
Website Home Page Makeover: Go visit your own website and hang around on the home page. Is there anything on there that is looking tired or do the words sound trite at this point? Think about what new images you would like on that page, if any, and tweak the words. If you have time to go deeper into your website, check out all of the pages and make changes.
Get Out There: You know there are ways to meet potential clients and potential referral sources. But life gets in the way. Use the summertime to take out colleagues that you trust in “adjacent” industries (not your direct competition) or even contact colleagues in your industry but from other cities. Use these people as resources to tall you about good organizations and charities that give you exposure to a larger group of people than your regular “peeps”. Whether it’s a specific bar association subcommittee, or a golf tournament or home tour that really has movers and shakers or a charitable cause that moves you, find out ways to be “out there” that are good for you, good for the community and may eventually be good for the bottom line.
Client File Management: How do you organize your clients and patients’ files? If you don’t spend time on file management, this task can become epic and monumental. Instead, spend time culling through your files, pull out clients and patients that you haven’t seen for a set time (what’s a good time for your business? 3 years? 2 years?). In addition, as you are going through these files, you might want to keep a running list of future interactions you would like to organize with certain clients. Keep this list for future business plans (I remember that I sold a house to Mrs. Jones, but she had older parents who were considering moving. I should call her to see if she’s still interested in looking.)
Create a Marketing Calendar: You know how your business cycle runs, for the most part. Think strategically about effective marketing campaigns and their time frame. If you want to encourage referrals, when would be a good time to do a referral marketing blitz? If you run a retail establishment, what specials and sales and even events would bring traffic to your store or to your website? You can even plan ahead as to what social media posts you will make in the future and write them ahead of time.
Clean Up Your Email: Every sent email is saved, but you may not need both your incoming and outgoing emails saved. This is a good time to really delete excess email from your systems, both temporarily and even permanently.
Password Protection: Summer is a great time to change all of your passwords. You can use password encryption software or just redo your passwords yourself. Be sure to keep a copy of your new passwords in a safe, but accessible place.
It’s important to remain productive throughout the summer. These longer days give you time to hang out in “planning” mode.