The sun is in the sky longer, kids are getting out of school and families are planning their summer vacations and for many local businesses, summer can mean a time for slower sales. But just because it’s vacation season doesn’t mean your sales need to take one.

So what can you do? The season doesn’t have to be a summer sales slump, there are many ways to maintain and even increase business but you need to take action now.

We’ve gathered four tips to boost your local business summer sales:

Try Something New

With the extra time (and daylight) over the summer try adding something new into your marketing strategy. Consider creating a video, sharing on Facebook Live or creating your first downloadable PDF and promoting this new content through either Boosted posts on Facebook or Facebook advertising.

Host a Social Contest

While a seasonal dip in sales is temporary, it doesn’t lessen the pressure you feel to always be increasing sales. Introduce a fun promotion during the summer months to not only lighten your mood but to test the effectiveness of contests for your local business.

Implement a giveaway on your Facebook Page, asking people to like the post and comment with two of their friends for a chance to win a free service or a top selling product from your local business.

Here’s a tip: by boosting this post you can guarantee it will be seen by your followers and that is more likely to be actioned and shared with your followers’ friends.

Take a look at GearJunkie’s latest contest below. They had 1.5 thousand reactions, over 200 shares and over 1,000 comments. GearJunkie has over 82,000 Likes for their Page, so you may not be able to attain these numbers, but that shouldn’t stop you from trying!

Target Lookalike Audiences

One of the best ways to reach a new audience is Facebook’s Lookalike audience advertising feature. A lookalike audience has a similar interest as your current audience and is, therefore, more likely to respond to your business and marketing.

When creating your lookalike audience you have a few choices. You can set-up a tracking pixel on your website for Facebook to determine a lookalike audience specific to your website (or a specific website page), or you can create a lookalike audience based on your current Facebook Page likes.

For example, a local business with a small Facebook Page following but more active website would want to use the pixel, while another business with a large Facebook Page following could benefit from the lookalike Page option. Create your lookalike audience through the Ads Manager in Facebook and be ready to use this audience on a boosted post or an entire ad campaign to gauge the effects.

Create your lookalike audience through the Ads Manager in Facebook and be ready to use this audience on a boosted post or an entire ad campaign to gauge the effects.

Review Your Business Goals

Finally, if the summer season slows down sales for your local business, it’s a good opportunity to take the time to review your business goals and set new objectives for the summer and fall months. Get input from your staff and take the extra time to re-evaluate your marketing plan halfway through the year.

As the weather heats up, use these tips to heat up your marketing strategy and boost your summer sales.

Let us know what strategies your local business is using this summer in the comments below!