If April showers bring May flowers, then that means it’s time to start thinking about your summer marketing strategy.  If you have a small business and are looking for ways to take advantage of warmer weather with your marketing plans but don’t have a monster budget, look no further. We’ve got some easy ideas that can get your brand out there without breaking the bank. And don’t be afraid to try a combination of our ideas—the more the merrier.

Grill Out

Who doesn’t like a barbecue? Host a cookout, beer garden, picnic, pool party or other outdoor event at your business or sponsor someone else’s summer event and you’ll be associated with summertime fun all year long.

Give away summertime swag

If you’ve been thinking about coming up with trinkets for customers and potential customers, now is a great time to pick up some inexpensive but useful gear. Depending on your type of business, koozies, beach bags or sunscreen adorned with your logo are all good bets. Rack up bonus points if the swag directly relates to your business—branded bug spray from a pest control company, perhaps? Exercise towels for a fitness instructor? Have fun with it, but do what makes sense for your business.

Hold a contest fit for warm weather

Everyone is looking to find some fun and relaxation this time of year, so why not give them a chance to win it for free? Hold a contest either online or a raffle with business cards that people drop in a bowl in your shop. They can win something as small as a bag full of beach essentials to a day at a spa to a major pool party, and you’ll get a solid new list of email contacts out of the bargain, not to mention the potential for ongoing customer loyalty. The only limit is your budget and your imagination.

Advertise off-season offers

Incentivizing new customers and referrals can turn a slow time of year into a blockbuster, even if it means offering a reasonable discount or promotional deal. Raking in a lot of new customers now can also mean good business this holiday season, so it might go without saying, but make sure all those new customers have a fantastic experience with your company.

Keep up the email marketing

July and August may be a slow time of year for your business, but people read just as many emails as ever, even on vacation. If you develop a strong summertime email marketing strategy, you won’t be alone: 59% of business-to-business marketing pros say email is their most effective way of generating revenue (Source: BtoB Magazine). Couple that with the fact that 70% of households in the United States use the internet when shopping for local products, and that’s strong motivation to keep your digital content fresh, fun and engaging.