How to Make the Most of Slow Business

keyboard phone paper pen all organized on a desk

It seems counterintuitive, but for some reason, Q1 is always a slow business time for me. Every year, I gear up to hit the ground running with new clients come January 1st, and every year it’s the exact opposite. Typically what I see are clients setting their budgets for the new year and realizing they need to scale back and often marketing is first on the chopping block. It’s such a bummer, but I’ve learned to make the most of the downtime. Here’s what I work on when my client load is light:

Update Service Packages

So often I have my head down and grinding away for clients, I don’t have time to step back and evaluate the services I’m offering. When I have some extra time, I take a minute and think about what I can expand on, change, and evaluate my pricing too. What’s taking longer than I anticipated? What else could I offer clients within the current service model? So far, I’ve landed on:

  • Adding additional newsletter campaigns to retarget contacts that did not open the original newsletter
  • Adding LinkedIn profiles for any clients who do not currently have one
  • Expanding LinkedIn posts that need to be more specific i.e. job postings for clients
  • Offering pricing on 1-2 hours of my time / month for minor updates, changes – all the little things that are out of the scope of the typical service model, but are still necessary and helpful for clients.

Clean Up

I HATE mess and clutter. And for some reason, my office becomes the place where everything our house goes to die when it doesn’t have a home. I spent 2 hours cleaning out, organizing, and decluttering my desk, the shelves, the dreaded “to be filed” box that had piled so high it was falling over.

I also bit the bullet and moved my notes from paper to digital. I resisted for so long because I didn’t want to spend the money on an iPad and I REALLY didn’t want to spend the time organizing my notes, setting up a new digital system, and converting my existing notes. It was actually less work than I thought and I absolutely love the organization of everything now. No more flipping note pads or scrambling to find something, it’s all in one place. I use Notability to make digital, handwritten notes. With endless scrolling, separate notebooks, color-coded pages, changeable “ink”, my notes are organized and all in one place. Plus, I can even convert my sloppy cursive into text.

Work On BW

I’m always the shoemaker with no shoes. I tell my clients all the time about the importance of blogging, newsletters, and really consistent social media posting….and then I don’t follow my own strategy. So! During slow times, I work on getting all of my own ducks in a row, including adding to my process as well. I’m now working on adding an additional post to LinkedIn each week. I invested in a subscription to The Phoenix Business Journal to use for both client posts and mine as well.

In addition, I take a look at all of my clients. Is any part of their service package lacking? Is it too much? Where can I improve on what I’m currently doing for them?

What Else?

What do you do when business is slow? Let me know what else I need to add to my list! Lastly, if you’ve been thinking now is a good time to turn on your social media marketing, shoot me a note and let’s talk.

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