Rainy days got you down? There are storms to weather on social media, but not every cloudy forecast will be a washout.
Listen up marketers, rainy days can yield flowers if you’re willing to pull out the marketing umbrellas. As we know all too well, sunny skies aren’t always a given on social media. Plans fall through. Events need new guest speakers. Trolls come out from under the bridge. And, well, sometimes things are just slow!
Sometimes, the weather refuses to cooperate with our big ideas. What can you do? Look for another big idea…or even a small one. This is rainy day marketing.
In real life, perhaps your family had a go-to activity list for rainy day fun. You headed for the games, pulled out a puzzle, or popped in a movie. Or, maybe you were a bit more practical. Not being able to go outside, you threw in a load of laundry, started scrubbing or organizing, and put something yummy in the crockpot. You might have even decided to take it easy or invested in selfcare with yoga and a nap. The point is, you made the most of your rainy day. You didn’t go anywhere, but it turned out you didn’t have to head outside in the storm.
Organizations and businesses are going to have rainy days, too. And, for marketers, rainy days could be those days between campaigns or launches. There’s a lull in traffic. Or a social media moment has your audience looking in another direction. Well, there’s no changing the weather! All you can do is navigate the storm.
Turn the bad forecast into a chance to refocus, take a much-needed rest, and listen to your audience. Your exact plans will depend on what kind of storm is out there. Here are a few ideas of how you can make the most of rainy day marketing the next time the forecast turns.
Forecast: Just a Shower
On social media, everything looks like it’s happening fast, fast, fast. However, experienced marketers and communicators know that making something look easy is anything but. There’s a quote from the actor Michael Cain that sums up this work nicely: “Be like a duck. Calm on the surface, but always paddling like the dickens underneath.” A calm surface is the result of many well-laid plans.
Hopefully, your organization’s social media is paddling along well. Having an effective social media calendar is one way to stay active and on track. Occasionally posting will not generate much interest and followers. You have to stay on top of things! That said, there will be days when traffic is a little light or your audience a little quiet. Embrace this as an opportunity. Think about it this way: When a drizzle keeps folks indoors and out of your shop, what do you do? You don’t sit around all day. You look to those little tasks that sometimes fall to the end of the list. For one reason or another, your audience is not coming out to play today.
So, the next time there’s a bit of a calm, know that it’s not a bad storm. This kind of rainy day marketing is an opportunity to check in on their goals, get ahead on their calendars, or catch up on emails. You get the idea.
Forecast: It’s a Downpour
Wow, it’s really raining out there! Cloudy skies might keep things slow, but a downpour is something else. You need the right gear for this storm. Grab your rain boots and raincoats. It’s time to pivot. When business slows down for several weeks, you need to do something to help pick up the pace. The weather has changed your audience’s habits and behaviors. How can you respond? Do they have new needs? Offer them an umbrella. Brighten their days with fresh content, attract them with a deal, or launch a new series with a different approach.
Additionally, weather-changing plans could be the result of planned events. Rainy day marketing could be the result of planning ahead and being prepared. So, stay on top of holidays and community calendars. Your audience could be distracted for a good reason—like vacation season, the Super Bowl, or simply because they are having a quiet Sunday morning. Keep an eye out for these events and engage as appropriate. Sunny skies might get a lot of love, but rainy-day pics can be stunning too.
Forecast: Thunder! Lightening! Tornadoes?
Marketers are always up for a pivot. Or, if they aren’t up for one, they at least understand that sometimes they need to happen. However, when a bad, bad storm is brewing, it’s also okay to step aside. When a rainy day is more of an emergency, your audience is not coming to play. Sometimes rainy day marketing means waiting out the storm. If you have been engaging in social listening, you will know when there is something major happening in your community. If there is, then it is not the time to talk to folks. For these kinds of rainy days, marketers should go silent on social media.
Remember: Rain Goes Away
Weather has patterns. And people have patterns. Even though a change of forecast can throw our plans out of whack, learning to watch ahead means we are prepared. Will there be a drizzle? Look ahead to catching up on forgotten to-do list items. Will it be a downpour? Pull out your rainy-day supplies and revisit your plans. Will there be a huge storm? Take cover and take watch. Whatever kind of rainy day marketing ends up on your calendar, using the appropriate strategy ensures the sun will be shining on you when the forecast changes.