Beauty salon clients tend to be temperamental but loyal. They’re picky about trusting a new salon with their look, but when they find a stylist they love they’ll stay with her for years.
Salons benefit from today’s online marketing tactics because there is so much visual content. This is not just content you create, but also content your clients create about their experience with you.
Here are 8 salon marketing ideas and strategies that will help you win more clients and keep your loyal ones for the lifetime of your business.
Salon Marketing Idea #1: Have a Website With Style
A great hair style makes a strong first impression – it’s a major part of the appeal.
Think of your salon website in a similar way. It makes a lasting first impression that has a strong influence on new client’s decision to schedule an appointment.
Salon websites need strong visual elements. They serve as a gallery of styles and a way to present the ambiance of your salon. Here is an example salon template design from UXI®:
Note the strong placement of calls to action to schedule an appointment. Your salon website plays an important role in scheduling appointments. Make sure your call to action buttons stand out and are placed throughout your design. Keep forms as short as possible and easy to fill out on mobile.
Your website will include images of your salon and most popular styles. Do this in a video to have an even strong impact.
Website designs today are not expensive or time-consuming to develop. Don’t settle for a dated, second-rate website that gives the impression that you lack style.
Salon Marketing Idea #2: Rank on Page One of Search
To drive traffic to your website, you’ll want to show up for salon and hair stylist related searches in your area. There are three ways to dominate the search results.
The first is pay-per-click advertising. These ads are run through auction-based systems like Google Adwords and Bing Ads. The main advantage here is that you show in the top positions (reserved for paid ads) and that you can control the ad copy and landing page. For example, you might want to run an advertisement with wedding specials. Your ad and the page it goes to on your website can match that offer.
Next, you need to set-up and rank for Google My Business. This is the maps listing and review platform Google uses for geo-targeted searches. It’s a free listing you can optimize with your descriptions and by getting customer reviews.
Then you have the organic website listings. These are also free clicks, with ranking gained by optimizing your website for keywords, gaining links, getting social media traffic, and adding content to your blog.
If you do it right, you can show up in three spots on page one:
Pro Tip: In many markets, no salons are using PPC advertising. This gives you a golden opportunity to appear at the top of the search results page with nobody competing on bids. PPC is particularly vital on mobile searches. Take advantage of it.
Pro Tip: Yelp and other review platforms dominate organic results for salons in many markets. Work hard on your website optimization, social media, and blog to try and outrank them in your area.
Salon Marketing Tip #3: Master Social Media Marketing
Social media offers an unprecedented marketing opportunity for salons, yet few are fully taking advantage of it. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, and Pinterest are a great way for smart salons to get in front of a targeted audience.
Much of this connects to the visual appeal and selfie-obsessed nature of social media. You can share pictures of styles and – better yet – your clients can share images of themselves.
Instagram is natural for any salon’s gallery:
Share client’s images and get them to spread the work across their networks:
The “selfie” culture of social media makes creating social media content for salons a natural. When you have an inventive new style, share it. When a client loves their new style, get them to share it. It’s free and effective.
Pro Idea: Use Facebook Messenger
If someone visits your salon’s Facebook page, there is a good chance they’re looking to schedule an appointment. Many salons have success getting people to ask for availability directly through Facebook Messenger.
For this to be effective, you’ll need to be responsive – within an hour is best.
Pro Idea: Advertise on Facebook
While organic content for salons is effective, it’s important to move potential clients further down the sales funnel with paid advertising.
Many small business owners are only now starting to grasp the enormity of Facebook advertising. The targeting options are extraordinary, allowing you to retarget people who visited your website or engaged with your Facebook page, create a lookalike audience based on your current clients, or target people based on their interests in personal beauty, haircare, or wellness.
You can also set-up ads that let people schedule appointments directly on Facebook.
Test Facebook ads for your salon. It’s the most effective way to directly reach the people most likely to schedule an appointment.
Salon Marketing Tip #4: Manage Your Reputation and Reviews
Word of mouth referrals are essential for salon marketing. The thing is that today, most of those types of referrals are online.
You will get reviews online from clients. They’ll appear on Yelp, Top Rated Local, Google Business, and Facebook. They have a big impact on the decision making of new clients.
Needless to say, you need to delight your clients to get positive reviews, otherwise this might happen:
When you look at Google Business listings, you can see how much of an impact review content has:
Likewise, either Facebook reviews you allow or posts by clients will spread across networks. The bottom line is that prospective clients want to know what existing clients say about their experience with you.
Beyond delighting clients, you need to make a proactive effort to get positive reviews. Start by asking people to share a happy selfie before they even leave your salon. Then follow up with emails thanking people for their business that includes a link to the review platform you want a review on.
Beyond that, monitor what’s said about you online and respond to anything negative in a professional tone of reconciliation.
You can also include testimonials on your website, and use the Top Rated Local widget to show positive reviews. With this content, people won’t’ feel like they have to go to sites like Yelp, where you have little control over what gets published about your salon.
Salon Marketing Tip #5: Offer a Unique Experience
There are many places people can go for an acceptable hair style. How do you lift the experience?
Your marketing will benefit a lot from having a unique offering that distinguishes you from the competition and gives a story you can use in your content marketing.
As a local salon, ask yourself why someone would choose you instead of a chain. What do you specialize in that you can become renowned for? What unique amenities can you offer that will create a buzz?
Salon Marketing Tip #6: Use Video
Video is a powerful way to communicate almost everything about your salon in a fast, visual format. When it comes to creating an impression, video can be hard to beat, as Voodoo Hair Lounge shows:
These business overview videos are perfect for your homepage. Optimize them for search on Youtube and add them to your Facebook page.
Don’t limit yourself to just an overview video. Videos make great social media content as well. Short before and after videos of interesting styles will get lots of shares on your social channels.
Salon Marketing Tip #7: Retain Your Best Clients
It’s a well-known fact in marketing that it’s less expensive to retain existing clients than it is to constantly have to earn new ones. This is especially true for salons.
Never overestimate a client’s loyalty. There are so many choices out there today and so much competition that you need to make consistent efforts to remind your best clients that you care.
Being active on social media is a good starting point. It keeps your brand in front of people.
Also, use email marketing to connect periodically with your client list. Give people updates on your salon, the latest styling techniques, and trends. Link to blog articles about hair care, making your style last longer, and how to choose a new look.
Use loyalty programs such as having every 10th haircut free. Discounts for seniors and students will keep them coming back.
If you use a CRM, you can keep track of details like birthdays or coming life events like weddings. Offer special services for these with a personal touch.
Salon Marketing Tip #8: Get Some Marketing Help
Digital marketing is a double-edged sword. It’s great because it creates so many ways to connect with clients, both socially and promotionally.
But it’s tough because you have to create far more content and manage digital channels that constantly change. Most business owners simply can’t keep up.
This is why it’s worth investing in some marketing help from a professional agency. At Marketing 360®, we have a marketing software platform that organizes all your marketing so you can easily view what’s happening with all your campaigns.
You also get the guidance of a trained marketing executive. Their job is to keep up with the evolving landscape of digital marketing and use the tools best suited to market your salon.
It’s a worthwhile investment with both financial and time-saving payoffs.
If you want to grow your list of loyal clients, give us a call. Get a free demo of our software and a free website mockup with your branding.