A Guide to Weather-Triggered Advertising

In an ad-saturated world, businesses need to deliver timely and relevant messages that match a consumer’s mood and needs. One factor of a data-driven approach to marketing messages is weather-based advertising, which uses real-time weather data to develop creative messaging. 

Leveraging weather APIs like VisualCrossing can make a huge impact on your conversion rate when done correctly, ensuring that customers receive engaging information that matches their current needs at any given moment. 

Why You Need Weather-Triggered Advertising

Consumer behavior is greatly inspired by their environment, so you can connect with them on a personal level by providing the right message at the right time and in the right location. A weather-triggered campaign enables you to tap into a consumer’s psyche by acknowledging the trigger conditions that make them want to purchase certain products. 

Industries That Rely on Weather Data

There are a variety of weather-dependent industries in both the public and private sector, each of which could benefit from weather-based campaigns. These particular industries may need to organize work around current weather conditions, or they may sell different products based on the current season and temperature. These include:

Construction – Just a few degrees can make a difference in whether it’s safe to work in a given area. Weather-targeted ads for construction supply companies may deliver personalized information to construction workers about non-slip boots for bad weather or warm coats during a cold snap.

Tourism – A popular target for DOOH campaigns, real-time weather conditions can change what destinations consumers are looking for. Some weather-triggered campaigns may include advertising for a sunny tropical vacation during heavy rain or prioritizing cool, snowy climates during a heat wave.

Food and Beverage – Just as you serve different products throughout the year, you should also serve ads based on the weather. During the darkest days of winter, a DOOH campaign that emphasizes warm drinks and soup will break through ad fatigue for consumers, as it represents what they need at the moment.

Retail – Weather-based ads are immensely helpful for drug stores, clothing stores, and department stores, as they can target consumers’ needs based on relevant products for the current forecast. For instance, you can activate ads for decongestants during flu season or initiate sales on winter wear when the first snow falls in a given area.

Our weather API provides the data you need to assess weather patterns and reach customers with relevant campaigns in the right locations. 

How Do Weather-Triggered Ads Work?

Weather-based advertising uses a pre-set group of parameters to decide when consumers receive a given message. It can also identify the physical arrangement of products in your store, whether that is a physical store or an online store. 

To use weather forecasts for marketing, you will design an ad campaign and decide when it will be most relevant to consumers based on the current weather. When the appropriate forecast arises, the weather-triggered campaign will be activated, changing your digital advertisements to the appropriate sales or products. You can also utilize weather-based advertising to change shop displays at the right time.

Let’s say that you run a department store. The forecast suggests an early spring, so you decide to put your spring stock out ahead of time, and you begin running weather-based ads about light jackets, allergy medicine, and mops. You’ll consider what consumers need in their daily lives during a given temperature and start pushing those brands through messaging about warmer temperatures.

Much of this can be done in advance and integrated with your advertising software so that you don’t need to manually switch sales signs over, which can become a headache if you have more than one location. 

How Weather-Based Marketing Can Make a Change

Weather-based marketing is an innovative approach to marketing campaigns as it recognizes that as the degrees rise or the snow falls, purchase intent changes. It allows for timely messages and product positioning, especially for e-commerce sites that can more easily shift their storefront.

By using weather-triggered campaigns, you can deliver timely messages for impulse buys, such as drinks or accessories. E-commerce sites can capitalize on weather trends in order to show a given piece of stock at the correct time, while contractors for services like home cleaning or water damage restoration can better attract leads by emphasizing the utility of their services in certain conditions. 

Weather-based advertising can even assist media buyers in identifying the proper placements and mediums for their campaigns. A digital billboard on the highway with an unobstructed view of the sky can emphasize the current weather conditions, underscoring the weather-based solution presented by the ad to consumers. 

Weather Dictates Consumer Needs and Trends

Weather affects purchase intent in nearly every sector of the market. While all products and services can be helpful at certain times, identifying the right time to emphasize a given product or service will help companies demonstrate that they are relevant, useful, and a solution to a customer’s needs.

Retailers know that some products and brands are most helpful during a given season. For example, people seek out antihistamines during times of high pollen count, or they may want hot beverages in the middle of winter. 

Service companies also recognize that demand rises and falls depending on the weather. For example, a car wash is going to be incredibly busy after a heavy snowstorm because car owners want to wash the road salt off their cars. Recognizing this, advertisers can find ways to drive up interest during those quieter times through unique messaging and creative displays.

Useful Weather Conditions Data

With weather targeting, you must know which type of weather data will be most relevant to your service. Your marketing team can discuss how to leverage the data based on your niche, as it will vary for every company. We’ve shared some examples from different industry sectors in order to demonstrate how to leverage weather data for advertising. 


Temperature is relevant to nearly every company that wants to use weather-triggered campaigns, as it determines where people will want to visit, what types of products they will want to buy, and what services they need. 

Indoor and outdoor activities and products are perfect for weather-triggered campaigns. There is typically a “sweet spot” when people want to be outdoors — too hot or too cold, and you will want to focus on indoor activities and products. Knowing this, you can switch your campaigns based on the difference of just a few degrees if necessary. 


Rain and snow bring people indoors and necessitate certain types of products. The slush and mud that precipitation brings drive demand for cleaning products and services, as well as waterproof gear. Winter precipitation requires snow removal and de-icing products. 

Long spells of heavy precipitation encourage a need for indoor entertainment, such as museums or movies to watch at home, and it can also push for distant tourism. For example, a southern state in the US might push ads about their warm weather and abundant sunshine on consumers in northern US states during extended periods of snow, making them wistful for a sunny day at the beach. 


Severe wind is of benefit for weather-triggered campaigns in the roofing and related construction niches. The day after, homeowners may find themselves needing shingle replacement, siding repair, or even window replacement, depending on the severity of the damage.

Wind can also dictate what you do and do not want to advertise at a given time, such as patio furniture and umbrellas. 

Solar Radiation and Energy

Like with temperature, there is a sweet spot with sunny days, often paired with the temperature on a given day. A cool spring day with full sun is a great time to advertise outdoor events and products, as well as sunscreen. Hot days with intense solar radiation can trigger advertisements for indoor activities, shade, and hydrating beverages.

In the energy sector, a sunny day is a perfect time to advertise solar power, including solar panels. It is also an excellent time to educate people about solar farms and their participation in the electrical grid’s output. 

What Are Weather Triggers?

Weather triggers are specific conditions that will initiate a given ad or activity. These triggers are certain parameters, such as temperature, precipitation, cloud cover, or even humidity, that will change what products, services, or categories of products that you emphasize in your advertising.

When developing your marketing campaigns, you will decide which weather triggers are most relevant to your industry and how you will utilize them, whether that is long-term forecasting to identify when it’s time to change inventory or short-term triggers that provide by-the-minute dynamic advertising.

You can also combine different parameters to pick very specific advertisements to show at a certain time. For instance, a cold, sunny, dry day may require a different advertisement than a cold, cloudy, snowy day.  Also, remember that often a forecast of weather is more important than the actual weather on a given day.

Along with your sales and marketing team, create a set of conditions that will identify which ad needs to be shown at one time, then integrate a weather API into your advertising and logistical software to guide marketing decisions. 

Benefits of Using Visual Crossing’s Data for Weather Targeting

While there are many weather APIs out there, many do not offer the granularity that decision-makers need for their ad campaigns. They may not update fast enough, or they may not have specific metrics for each industry’s requirements.

Visual Crossing provides numerous advantages, including affordable weather data pricing that is based on the functionalities you need. Our API can be integrated with industry-specific software — all you need is the API key and the query information. This makes it incredibly versatile and efficient for businesses of all types. 

The Bottom Line

Weather-based ads improve conversion rates and ensure that a company can provide the best service possible to consumers. There are a variety of different weather conditions that shape consumer behavior, and weather targeting will help integrate these into a comprehensive ad campaign by changing displays based on weather conditions. 

With the use of a weather API like Visual Crossing, you can leverage weather data for even more effective advertising that matches consumer expectations at any given time.