Man, it's hot out there. And, dry. And, miserable. This map shows the United States as a big red blob of broken maximum temperatures in June. The U.S. Drought Monitor says the drought covers half of the nation - and is expanding.

Rural Lifestyle Dealer Publisher Michael Ellis bought a share with a CSA farm this year and the drought has been significant to the point of impacting deliveries. In its weekly email update to shareholders, his CSA shared:

As most of you are aware, we are struggling, as are most CSAs, with intense heat and drought. ... We have lost many of our crops that we depend upon being available for your shares at this time.

Dealers nationwide are coping with the mowing season that wasn't. Your rural lifestylers need you to give them a reason to get outside. There is still lots of work that can be done after the heat of the day. And, because they are spending less time on a mower, they may have time to take on other projects.

For instance, there might be areas they haven't been able to maintain in wetter years - and your equipment can help them get the job done. Now's the time to have a new load of driveway gravel delivered and use that UTV grader attachment. Graders, loaders and other attachments can fix problem areas around ponds. Similar equipment can rearrange landscaping elements to redo outdoor leisure areas.

Showcase your hand-held power equipment, such as for trimming or cutting down drought-stressed shrubs and trees.

Help them care for their animals, too. For instance, they may need to fence in new areas for grazing.

Issue a challenge to your dealership team to come up with new drought-season uses for your equipment. Then, invite your customers in to cool off and learn how they can repair damage done by the drought and make improvements on their "wish lists."

Take advantage of the drought to prove to your customers that you're more than steel on a lot or parts in a bin. You're their acreage expert and can help them keep their country homes looking good in any kind of weather.

I talked last eBrief about solving problems to win customers. So, Mother Nature handed you and your customers a problem. How will you make the most of it?

Share what you're doing to help your rural lifestyle customers cope.