The summer months can be hard on a home business. Distractions abound – the kids are home, the temperatures are balmy, and there are just so many other things to do. Plus, the summer months tend to be slower for business anyway – because those same summer distractions are affecting your customers, too.
But you don’t have to succumb to the summer slump. Here are seven tips for reinvigorating your home-based business today.
1. Recognize that all businesses have an ebb and a flow, so try not to get overly concerned about a month or two of dwindling numbers. The last thing you want to do is push the panic button. Use this slower time as a cue to re-examine your priorities and your values as a home-based business owner. Rewrite the mission statement of your business.
2. Refine your “success system.” The most effective and efficient businesses have a streamlined system for success. Take a hard look at your business plan, including your advertising and promotion, ROI, overhead costs, sales, and conversion rates. What’s working? What’s not? Crunch your numbers from the previous months – and determine where your summer business starts to flag. Can you make up for declining sales with additional promotion? What can you do now to make your autumn and holiday business boom? Look at your financial reports from last summer. What kinds of activities were successful in breaking you out of the rut?
3. Think outside the box. Promote your business with a summer fundraiser or write a series of press releases. Brainstorm as many new promotional possibilities as you can – however outlandish they may seem at first. Then try one or two marketing activities you’ve never tried before…just for the sake of experimenting.
4. Renew your goals. What do you want to accomplish in your business between now and December 31? Sometimes a new goal is all it takes to get out of a self-induced mental slump. Write down short term sales goals, as well as the number of business-building activities you aim to do each day. Review your goals once or twice daily.
5. Enlist your kids. If the summer months bring distractions from your kids, enlist their help. Even small children can help with certain tasks. You may also consider hiring a neighborhood teen to play with the children in the backyard while you get the important stuff done.
6. Take some time off. When the sun is shining and the breeze is blowing, sometimes you just have to get away from your desk for an hour or two. One of the greatest joys of having a home-based business is the flexibility to call your own shots and work your own hours, so go enjoy yourself for awhile. You’ll be able to concentrate much better when you return.
7. Follow your time off with immediate, purposeful action. Even if you need to take your laptop to the Starbucks patio, get working on your new goals. Keep telling yourself that this is going to be your best year yet – and you’re going to make it happen!