Peak tourism season in Newfoundland and Labrador traditionally occurs from June to September. Specifically, according to the Department of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation, July and August account for one-third of tourism stays during the entire year. Tourists generally want to travel when the weather is good, facilities are available, and transportation isn’t an issue. However, boosting tourism during the off-season makes economic sense for many businesses that rely on the summer to get them through the slower months. Developing and promoting experiences in your area during the off-season will ensure more consistent revenue throughout the year. Here are some tips to offset the slow season slump:
- Partner with other businesses and local chambers of commerce to promote your town or region during the off-season.
- Establish marketing partnerships and cross-promotions with other businesses.
- Increase promotions during local events or festivals.
- Work in partnership with your local government to develop events or attract events to the area.
- Encourage seasonal businesses and tourist attractions to remain open during the off-season.
- Re-engage your local market.
- Engage your customers from the peak season:
- Offer incentives for customers to stay in touch.
- Offer reward programs to encourage repeat business.
- Create a coupon for a free product or service for your loyal repeat customers.
- Update your website and social media channels throughout the year.
- Post pictures and videos of things to do in your area on your online platforms.
- Develop events and promotions that recreate the draw of the peak season, such as a beach party in December or Christmas in July.
- Highlight the benefits of the shoulder season, such as low rates, fewer crowds, and no flies.
- Offer exciting packages, which can be stand-alone or bundled with other businesses, such as sightseeing trails, whale-watching, berry picking, iceberg tours, or hiking.
- Create an environment that will attract and can accommodate workshops, seminars, and conferences.
- Add products or services suited to the off-season.
- Promote your business to niche markets, such as photographers or seniors.
Creating activities and experiences year-round will offset the seasonality of tourism. Think outside the box and capitalize on resources in your region to encourage tourism 365 days a year; it benefits both your bottom line and your community!