With the long dark days of winter fading it seems we all shift to thinking about the longer, and warmer, summer days. We open the windows more and get the collected winter dust off of everything. We dig in the garage to find where the golf clubs are. They are behind the boxes of tree ornaments. It seems to be an annual activity, doesn't it?
Many businesses also seem to be coming out of the winter and with only one more shoulder season to go before summer. We get excited for the prime season potential coming soon. We work to get creative and begin to plan how we can maximize and cash-in on the usually best season (outside of Christmas rush).
Perhaps the same annual ritual of putting away the Christmas ornaments in March and shifting the golf clubs forward could align with your marketing and business development goals. Maybe this year the plan isn't how to maximize potential on just the summer, but the other four seasons before the next spring cleaning season?
The one thing I've found is that focusing on one big event or promotion in the peak season and not planning to leverage your efforts of that campaign to support the next one, say in a shoulder or winter season, means that you almost start from scratch to build momentum again next year. Planning ahead with two or more campaigns, building off the efforts of a prior campaign, means you can promote an upcoming campaign or event to customers you are seeking for your upcoming big event or campaign.
For example, in agri-tourism, say you have an upcoming summer long-table dinner to are building and marketing like crazy, make sure you are ready to promote your harvest one at the summer event. This way, your drive to get people to attend your summer event also supports the next campaign/s at the same time. You already have active customers you've worked so hard to find so why not look at preselling directly to them for the next one in the Fall. This is capacity building and will make future efforts easier...and cheaper.
Don't stop there though, plan on the Christmas event as well and share both the harvest and Christmas one at the summer event. Maybe you can even get your customers pre-ordered in for the next two, by selling a package for the next two at a volume rate. Your future tables can now grow in size because you've presold some seats. Theme them up with unique themes under your brand have fun with them too.
Long tables are one example of capacity building and the concept can cross into pretty much any sector. Layer in great customer service and product/service quality so the volume sale is an easier pitch. Your thoughts of getting the most out the summer peak can now expand get your campaigns planned out right into the next season that you're looking for your golf clubs again. Shoulder and winter seasons don't have to be as depressing, holding out for next summer.
Maybe think about building shelving this spring to put the ornaments on after next Christmas, so you get easier access to the golf clubs next year as well.