Salon Marketing: The Definitive Guide
8 min - Published on
Your salon’s marketing strategy needs to be creatively cultivated and planned out so that you can stand out from the competition and build long-lasting relationships.
Owning a small business comes with its perks; you get to control the ins and outs of your brand more easily - and you get to have the ‘close relationship’ feel with your customers. Owning and running a salon is even better because you actually get to build personal relationships and trust with your clients.
Bringing in new clients and fostering those first steps of a relationship can be a struggle, however, especially when there is so much concentration and it can be tough for people to trust a new stylist with their hair. Luckily, mastering the marketing strategy as a salon can boost awareness of your brand, increase your sales, drive new customers into your salon, and foster the foundation for strong client relationships.
What is a Marketing Strategy?
Sharing a picture every now and then on Instagram is considered a marketing strategy. Albeit not a very good one, but nonetheless, any plan a business creates to advertise, marketing, and grow the awareness of their brand both on and off-line is considered a marketing strategy. A strategy can be in-depth and well planned with a strong probability of success, or it can be a spur of the moment, go with the flow plan - but one thing is certain, the effort you put in will translate to the outcome you receive.
A good marketing strategy should help you:
- grow your client base
- increase the frequency of appointments booked by your clients
- sell more products that are tangential to your business (eg: selling hair products for your hair salon)
- build brand awareness
Types of Marketing Strategies for Salons
Building marketing strategies as a salon can seem daunting, however, there are many options available to you that can be inventive and engaging. Here are a few options to help you get those creative juices flowing.
Word-of-mouth marketing happens when clients talk about your business to their friends, recommending they try your services. 92% of all consumers believe word of mouth from friends and family over anyother form of marketing. This means that there is this huge capability for your brand to really spread out and bring in new customers. Word-of-mouth marketing is more than depending on your clients to go out and talk about your salon, it’s your salon actively building a brand that’s worth talking about and then engages and promotes your clients to share the news through their social media, groups, and creating something “buzzworthy.”
While most of the time, WoMM happens by accident (that is when a client is more than satisfied with your services and talks to their friends about it), it can be strategized.
If you want to encourage WoMM, you need to make sure your customers are aware of:
- unique services clients would not find in another salon
- the unique training and qualifications of your staff
- the creativity with which you suggest styling options
- gotchas to keep in mind when choosing home care products
Digital advertisingYou can effectively grow the awareness of your brand to multiple audiences through digital advertising, which uses social media, search engines, inbound marketing, and other paid advertising techniques to get your business in front of potential clients. Every ad or piece of content you see on the internet is a form of digital advertising.
E-mail and SMS marketingWhen you actively gather data on your clients, offering e-mail and SMS marketing provides them with an insider’s peek at the ins and outs of your business, a chance to be the first to know about upcoming sales and deals and even provides them with their own discount codes and specials available only to those who subscribe. This is an excellent way to show your clients you care but to also foster those long term relationships.
How do you get started with building a marketing strategy?
It’s actually very simple to get started with your own salon’s marketing strategy. All you really need is to sit down with a pad of paper or Word document and begin writing down your goals, customers, and other information that will be key to drawing in more clients. Here are a few steps to get you started.
Set clear goals.What is it you actually want the end result of your campaign to be? Set clear, measurable goals so you can analyze your results to find out where you landed in relation to those goals. For example, if you want to boost appointment booking by 20% this quarter, you can better create marketing content to attract clients and then use a booking app like Organisely to track those who booked - so you know when you reach your goal.
Identify your target customers.Chances are that your salon isn’t geared to EVERYONE unless of course, that’s your angle. For most salons, however, you have a target customer you wish to attract to your salon, such as older women, men, or children. Find out where you can find your target customers. Are they on Instagram and social media or are you more likely to find them in person?
Research your competitors.What is it that your competitors are doing right and what are they missing? Take inspiration from them to get your own ideas, but remember, if yours is unique, people are more likely to choose you.
Define your budget.Some marketing, such as blogs and social media posts, can be free and others can cost more but increase the likelihood of reaching your goals faster. If you know your budget, you can better align your strategy with what you can afford.
Create an implementation calendar.The biggest key to a successful marketing strategy is scheduling! You can’t simply create and post ads any day and expect to find out what works and what doesn’t. For analytical purposes as well as to build trust with your clients, consistency and implementation is so important.
Track your results.Finally, track your results. If you see your sales improving, you need to analyze your marketing strategy and the steps you took so you can find out what worked. In this way, next month you can focus more on what really brought in clients and scratch the ideas that didn’t provide optimal results.
Salon Marketing Ideas
If you’re sitting down to brainstorm marketing ideas, a great idea is to check out what the competition has been doing - or even what other well-loved brands in your community have been focusing on to build their audience. Here are a few trends that continue to show success for salons and other similar industries.
Birthday Promotions.Hold sales and discounts for clients who are celebrating a birthday but also when your salon has reached milestones, such as your one-year anniversary. Other promotions can include student discounts, wedding party packages, etc. Get creative!
Allow online reservations.Making the booking process as easy as possible can do wonders for bringing in more clients. It’s all part of the experience, and if clients have to jump through multiple hoops to get in touch with their stylist, they may decide to go elsewhere. Of course, Organisely offers so many tools for streamlining the process.
Giftcards.They’re always popular! Offering a free blow-out with a gift card purchase is just an extra incentive.
Collect client reviews.Nothing brings in more clients than word-of-mouth. Client reviews are a form of marketing that solidifies trust in your potential customers from the very beginning, especially when they can see pictures and proof that the reviews are legitimate.
Some Quick Marketing Strategy Frequently Asked Questions
How do I get my salon on the first page of Google results?Keep on building your content updating your website with important keywords (such as your location and services) as often as you can. Sharing videos and ensuring your website is responsive to all devices are also proven to be important to Google.
How do I reduce no-shows?It can sometimes be impossible to really ensure everyone comes to their appointments, however, sending reminders via email, or even sending an SMS the day before the appointment can better guarantee they don’t forget on the day of.
Do I really need to allow online bookings?Literally everyone is online these days. Even seniors are benefiting from online bookings and find the simplicity and convenience to be so much easier. If you’re not accepting online bookings, chances are you’re missing out on A LOT of potential clients who have searched for your salon in hopes of online booking but chose another one that did.
How do I reduce cancellations?Honestly, it can also be impossible to reduce cancellations, but offering clients the ability to reschedule can at least secure they do end up coming to you at some point. Remember, the key to building long-lasting relationships is to be understanding and provide the best customer experience.