Summer is almost here, which means it’s time to warm up your advertisers with new ad opportunities. Summer is full of holidays your clients will want to use to their advantage. However, they may not be able to concept or ideate. That’s where you come in. Let’s look at some summer holiday ad campaigns that can heat up your advertisers’ ROAS (return on ad spend).


Hot Summer Holiday Ad Campaign Ideas

Looking for a hook to bring to your advertisers isn’t easy. Summer sizzles with ideas related to holidays, celebrations, events and more.


It’s time to celebrate the accomplishments of high schoolers and college grads. According to the National Retail Federation, consumers spent $5.8 billion on graduation gifts in 2022. The percentage of people gifting in 2022 was 33%, up 1% over 2021. It marks a significant opportunity for advertisers to get their share of this spending. The advertisers to approach would be retailers that sell items for gifting. Another gift option is experiences, which have become just as valuable to recipients as goods. Those could be travel, spa services, attractions, or local venues that present concerts and acts.

To capitalize on the other aspect of graduation — parties — you can engage businesses like restaurants and event spaces. Local grocery stores and adult beverage stores could also be good targets for those hosting celebrations at home.

Another option is to chat with community colleges, universities and trade schools about ads targeting recently graduated seniors who are still deciding on their futures. Employers may also be interested in catching the attention of new grads with recruitment ads.

Summer Vacations

Summertime is vacation time for millions of Americans. In 2023, there are mixed signals on the outlook, which we covered in our hospitality advertising trends post. The desire to travel remains high, but inflation could impact how much people spend. The U.S. Travel Association reported that domestic leisure travel should surpass pre-pandemic numbers. Every market is different, and there are many advertisers to talk to about summer vacation advertising, including:

  • Dealerships offering summer tune-ups, which often provide great margins for them
  • Retailers bundling travel necessity deals, from luggage to sun care to hiking gear
  • Local attractions campaigning to get guests returning within their metro areas and beyond
  • Travel agents posting about special deals, booking bucket list trips and delivering need-to-know information for travel outside the U.S.
  • Boutique hotels and bed and breakfasts offering summer specials and highlighting what makes their accommodations exclusive

Summer Festivals and Concerts

Summer is always the time for festivals and concerts. Capitalize on people’s desire to get out and have fun by targeting your advertisers in the space. Organizers of the events will appreciate event coverage.

Additionally, hotels, restaurants and other hospitality-related businesses could use these activities to bolster promotions that tie in. For example, if a music festival is on the calendar, nearby restaurants and bars could offer special discounts for concertgoers who bring in ticket stubs.

Fourth of July

Celebrations for the country’s birthday are always a favorite time for people to travel and host events. There are so many ways for your advertisers to get in on the Fourth of July spend with special promotions, holiday sales, travel bundles and more.

Work with your retailers, convenience stores, hospitality groups and other groups putting on events to ensure they get noticed by their target audiences. One idea is to donate a percentage of sales to veteran groups or historical societies. Another option is an ultimate Fourth of July bundle that brings different advertisers together. It will reduce overall costs and get more exposure.

Back to School

Most school districts begin the new year in August. That means kids need supplies, new uniforms and other must-haves. Retailers that feature these products will want to advertise their promotions.

Additionally, the start of school also means parents need to find after-school programs and activities. YMCAs, dance studios, sports leagues and other kid-focused pastimes will be in high demand. Start early in promoting these events to fill them up fast.

Labor Day

Labor Day is the official end of summer. It is a favorite long holiday weekend for beach trips, barbecues and end-of-season sales. Besides big-box, furniture and specialty retailers, car dealerships also have Labor Day sales. By this time of the year, the auto industry should be spending more on ads, according to expert projections on the market’s recovery.

Restaurants and grocers can also find positive ROAS with Labor Day themes. Party planners need the essentials for a day of grilling or may want to order takeout to save time. Putting together bundles for the perfect Labor Day party could be promising.

Which Ad Categories Will Best Support Summer Holiday Campaigns?

You have a variety of broadcast, TV and digital marketing segments to consider. In most cases, using diverse inventory will drive the best response.

  • Over-the-top (OTT) and connected TV (CTV): OTT and CTV are ideal for visual products like Fourth of July and Labor Day bundles. It could also highlight experiences that make sense for summer vacation or back to school.
  • Radio: This tried-and-true medium is always a great go-to. Consumers still tune in, whether in the car or at home. The key is to make radio ads catchy and action oriented. Connect with locals with messages about exclusive radio deals for products to buy online or in-store with a specific code.
  • Social media marketing: Most people turn to social media to research products and find events. If your advertisers aren’t using social ads, these summer holidays would be a great way to test and try. These will work best for specific products or events. For example, social media advertising will get the word out if a local business throws a Fourth of July bash. They can target people by demographics such as age, location and interests. Add a special offer to get a discount, and your client could be on their way to a sold-out event. You can select specific social media sites depending on their target audience. For example, Facebook is a good choice for reaching Gen X and baby boomers. Millennials and Gen Z prefer Instagram, Snapchat and TikTok. 
  • Banner ads: If you want to target specific users, banner ads are another excellent ad unit. Use these in conjunction with social media ads or radio. You’ll have a greater reach and reiteration of the promotion. You can use these for sales, events, activities and more.
  • SMS marketing: Text messages provide a direct channel to consumers. SMS campaigns work great for coupons. This channel does require an opt-in, but that’s a good thing because you know that the recipient knows the brand. SMS can be great for sending reminders to loyal customers for holiday deals. You can also recommend exclusives for this segment.
  • TV: Traditional TV ads are still important for advertisers. They work even better when part of an omnichannel campaign with digital tactics. Advertisers should focus on single promotions to ensure consumers have greater retention. Keeping it simple and focused on consumer needs will deliver better results.
  • SEM (search engine marketing): When people are looking to buy, plan or find, they often start with search. It’s a great complement to linear advertising. Research shows that many consumers search after hearing or watching a broadcast ad. SEM is an excellent option for advertisers in any industry, from travel to back-to-school activities to shopping for gifts.


Summer Holiday Campaigns: Start Sharing Ideas Now!

Holiday promotions will always be a mainstay for advertisers. However, you don’t have to keep doing the same thing in the same channels. Warm up your clients with these new ideas to drive better results for you and them.