Social media is always with us, but you may be surprised to discover our usage is cyclical. As the summer days get longer, we spend more time outside and less time engaging on social media. Now, that doesn’t mean we put our phones down (after all, summer light is perfect for an Insta-worthy snap!). What we do find is that engagement with thought leaders and brands tends to dip in the summer (and again at the end of the year, beginning in November).

We’ve seen this trend play out year after year. We don’t need to fight the low engagement days of summer — instead we recommend you use this time to your advantage.

Here are some ideas.

Launch a summer-themed campaign or contest

Social posting does not slow down, but engagement does. Sharing user-generated content is a proven tactic to boost engagement. With that in mind, we recommend launching a summer series encouraging your audience to share their photos and tag your accounts. Be specific, suggest themes, and offer an incentive — something as simple as resharing their content from your account can be enough. Prizes always get people excited, too.

Experiment with a new content campaign

Since audiences are less engaged with social media this time of year, it’s the perfect time for a content campaign soft launch. Want to try something new? A smaller audience can provide a safe place to experiment. Put the ideas out there in the summer months and collect feedback. If you happen to see increased engagement, you know you have strong content and can roll out the full campaign later when you have a more engaged audience.

Slow your posting cadence

We don’t want you to take the summer off from social media, but do consider posting less frequently during the summer months. Engagement is down, so it can be a great time to slow your cadence and use the extra time to develop a fall campaign, create new graphics and content, or test a new idea.

Increase your posting cadence

This is counter-intuitive, but if engagement dips, increasing content increases the opportunities for people to engage and can drive growth during slow months. It’s not a surefire strategy, but certainly worth testing if you have the time and strong content.

Your engagement numbers will likely rebound come September. In the meantime, use the summer months as a time to loosen up and be more creative on social media, and work on a plan for a targeted fall campaign launch.

What are you experimenting with this summer on social media?