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Building and Maintaining a Client Base through Promotions and Marketing

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Owning a salon or spa in today’s challenging economic climate is not easy. It requires proper planning, steadfast execution and large investments in time and money. To succeed in the beauty industry, it is extremely important to stimulate and promote consumer visits to your salon. The best way to do that is with simple and effective marketing. Successful promotions and events play a pivotal role in every salon or spa’s success, but one of the greatest challenges of running a salon is discovering unique ways to increase business without giving away services or retail for reduced prices (or for free!). But executing killer promotions in your salon or spa doesn’t have to be overwhelming! All it takes is some resourceful and creative planning.

Whether you’re a new or seasoned salon owner, it is essential that you maximize your efforts to stay current, profitable and competitive. To get started, here are some highly effective marketing ideas for effectively promoting your salon:

Create a smart loyalty program: Many clients are not motivated by savings but instead by rewards for their loyalty. A loyalty program is a brilliant way to reward your customers and attract new ones by offering returning clients discounts on services or products. Don’t waste money advertising; promoting a loyalty program in your salon adds an element of exclusivity and gives it a VIP feel. To ensure that your loyalty program is profitable, be careful not to discount services that the customer is already paying full price for. Only reward customers with something they’ve never had before to introduce them to something new. If they end up coming back and buying that product or service at full price, then your profits will drastically increase.

Word of mouth advertising: Run a referral program or frequent customer card to reward your current clients. Offer a discount on services for each referral or after a set number of visits to the salon and make sure both parties benefit from the program.

Get involved with the community: Being involved in your community can bring a sense of satisfaction to the work you do. How many people in your community know about your salon and what you do? Get the word out there by taking part in local activities such as bridal shows, school careers days, fashion shows, or fundraisers. These events will help you to spread the word and target specific clients who may be interested in your services.

Support a charity: Getting involved with a charity is beneficial for so many reasons. Volunteering is an inspirational experience that can offer a new perspective on your life or business. Beyond the personal impact, though, supporting or partnering with a charity can also be good for business. Sponsoring a charity or volunteering goods or services to an organization that is aligned with yours is a good way to generate local publicity.

Offer add-on services: Rather than discounting to attract business try offering an incentive which adds value and targets a service area that needs building. For example, ask your client if they would like to try a hot oil treatment, in addition to the service they already booked. Get your supplier to help with the cost where offers are product-related. Use window promotional material and in-salon marketing to help promote the service.

Promote a daily deal: If you’re looking for some faster traction when promoting your salon, why not try a daily deal? The discount will need to be higher than other smaller incentives because customers will be paying for the deal on the spot but the investment should be worth it when you start seeing your business booming. You can advertise your daily deals through your email list, website and social media pages.

Seasonal and holiday specials are always big sellers: In addition to gift cards for services and gift packages of products (both of which you should have), special offers that reflect the season and holiday always sell well. For example, if you own a spa, perhaps give a free 30 minute massages when you bring your mother for Mother’s Day (free massage with the purchase of one massage).

Networking and partnering: Lighten the advertising load by cross promoting or partnering with other local businesses. Networking allows you and other companies to work together to promote a product or service and is a winning and mutual relationship. Building joint ventures will give your salon more exposure in the community. Reach out to local businesses, especially those in the beauty industry and offer them discounts towards your salon services in return for their help in advertising. Have them share on social media and post advertisements in their stores for your salon. Two heads are better than one, so use their established business knowledge to your advantage. Don’t be afraid to contact as many businesses as you can. Networking is a win-win situation, so the more the merrier!

The Power of Free: People love getting a little bonus, a gift, a little something extra. Your clients do, too. When clients spend above a specified amount on beauty treatments, hairdressing or skin care products, give them a free gift. The free item could be anything from cosmetics, skin care products, hair care products, salon voucher, product samples, etc. Free introductory offers entice clients to try a new product. Free offers help with the buying decision and increase sales. Small extras are, more often than not, perceived as little luxuries. The aim, of course, is for your client to love the results so much that they will pay for the same treatment on their next visit.

Gift certificate promotions and super sales: Send your clients a reminder about your latest gift card incentive. For example, if they buy a Rs 100 gift card for a friend or family member, give them a Rs 20 gift card. Or hold a sale, maybe even just twice a year, where you let clients buy products and services for 30% off! This is a great way to get customers in the door or to make room for new products.

Salon marketing requires a detailed plan and a rigorous execution: If you’re not moving forward, you’re falling behind. When you begin to try these ideas in your salon, start small, so you can test the results of a small campaign geared at your newly developed target audience. Look for low cost opportunities to continue to build your brand and identity. Promote a product/service “freebie” or one of your products/services at a discounted rate with a high perceived value, but low cost to you. The most important thing to remember is that there is plenty of competition out there, so always make sure to give customers a reason to try your business and plenty more reasons to keep coming back. Put these powerful tips into action and watch your hard work turn into solid relationships, paying (and happy) clients and increased revenue!

by Roshni Gupta | 23 Aug 2016

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