For many non-snow related outdoor activities, the changing of the leaves signifies the end of another season. As we showcased in the last post, a lot of companies were really successful this season in getting their social media efforts off the ground and moving. Now that the season’s over though, many companies are left with one question:
How do you keep the momentum going?
Just because trips aren’t going out during the winter doesn’t mean your customers (or potential customers) aren’t thinking about getting back outside and taking on a new adventure. Keep them interested so when the first signs of spring appear, they can’t wait to pick up the phone and give you a call.
Here are some ways to keep your community engaged in the off season:
As the winter coats come out and the snow fades from pristine novelty to the black, soggy mush you have to trudge through each morning, we would rather be anywhere else. Take this opportunity to help your audience relive a memorable trip you provided when the sun was shining and work and school were far off in the distance. Have them submit a story about their adventures last summer and feature a new one each week. Create a webpage to showcase all the stories and provide links in your social media posts (garnering you some great website traffic on the side). In the end, choose a winner that really encapsulates the vibe of your company, and provide them a free trip to come back next summer. There’s no question unearthing those stories will have them talking about it all over again to their friends and coworkers as they huddle around the furnace.
While you’re the expert when it comes to creating memorable vacations, you may be missing out on some things your current/potential customers are looking for. California companies such as O.A.R.S., and American Whitewater Expeditions take advantage of the readily available wineries the region has to offer with Wine & Whitewater trips. So many areas are offering themed culinary–or otherwise–trails, is there something your customers would like to pair with their adventure? Ask for ideas over the winter, and you never know, one of your customers may come up with the latest trend in adventure travel…and you’ll be the first to do it! Then of course, offer them the trip for free, and they’ll be bursting at the seams to tell all their friends about the trip they created.
It’s no secret that guides play a prominent role in return customers. While guide spotlights are great throughout the season, keeping their intoxicating personalities fresh in your rafters’ minds, let them a in a step closer. Customers love telling the stories of Critter, Smiley, Big Dick, Evil Casey, whoever it may be, to their friends back home. And it’s
because they really feel like they’ve formed a connection with that guide, and in a sense lust after the lifestyle they lead. But where are their guides over the winter? More than likely they’re at a ski resort or chasing a warmer climate; but there’s also those in medical school, or teaching, or any of the other amazing things guides do in the off season. Call them up, get a picture, and do a spotlight about what they’re doing at that moment…when maybe the paddling’s at a pause. It will draw your customers in even more and make them feel like they’re really getting to know their guide, and becoming part of your family. By the time the season starts up again, they won’t be able to wait to get back in the boat and reconnect.
Don’t jeopardize all your hard work throughout the season to just use the off season as a way to talk about spring rafting and the deals you’ll be offering. Keep your audience engaged. These are just a few ideas to get your customers talking and keep your company top of mind throughout the off season.
As always, if you’d like to discuss a more personalized approach to the off season–using our unique data collection–GIVE US A SHOUT. We love talking strategy almost as much as we love talking rafting.
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