They’re here! those hot muggy days when dogs lay around panting and customers are scarce… What can you do to make your business “cool” during this season?
Historically, “the dog days of summer are the hottest days in the summer season, and have that name because of an ancient belief that when Sirius, also called the Dog Star, was close to the sun, it was responsible for causing hot weather.” 
It’s the time of year when snowbirds leave the south, many people in general go away on vacation, and sales slump into the ‘summer doldrums’. “If business is slow, there are two things you can do about it: Sit and stew or get out and learn more about how to grow. If the latter interests you, consider the many free and cheap opportunities to break out of your rut and brainstorm with other business owners coming this summer and into the fall.” Begin by networking with your local chamber of commerce or merchants association. Join together with other business owners to create excitement around your business.
If you are located in a strip mall or plaza, one possibility might be a center-wide sidewalk sale. Others, which the mall or plaza management might arrange, if requested, are special displays in the parking lot which could range from skateboard exhibitions to having a car club hold a show there. Larger stores, or smaller stores collectively could arrange a snow-event. Petco in Chula Vista, California held a snow event this past weekend for dogs. “Beat the heat this summer at Unleashed by Petco’s Summer Cool Zone. the store is declaring their annual summer snow day by creating a fenced-in, fur friendly winter wonderland. twenty tons of snow will make up the outdoor park, where dogs will be sure to wag their tails at the frosty feeling of fluffy snow under their paws. the indoor play area will also have air conditioning and free doggie ice cream, allowing dogs to have a day to chill out this summer.” Petco would not have this as an annual event if it did not bring in sales in excess of costs!
If zoning will allow it, a parking lot concert (in the day under a temporary tent, or at night in the open could be another option. Wal-Marts throughout the country have been holding them with various venues. You know if Wal-Mart does this on a national basis that it must draw in customers!,, many of us grew up with events like ‘Christmas in July’. “American advertisers began using “Christmas in July” themes in print for summertime sales as early as 1950. In the United States, it is more often used as a marketing tool than an actual holiday.”
The only limit to what you can do is your imagination. If you are short of ideas, have a customer contest to come up with some. You have nothing to lose and potential sales and profits to gain!