Want to improve your salon business’s marketing game but don’t know where to start? You’ve come to the right place.
While starting and running a salon business can certainly be profitable, you’ll still need the right strategy, patience, and hard work to guarantee success. Especially in these post-COVID-19 pandemic days where customers are more concerned about physical interactions (which are obviously common in salons!), it’s very important to rethink your marketing initiatives to attract more customers.
With that being said, here are six actionable tips for booking more customer appointments for your salon
1. Improve your local SEO game
Nowadays in this digital age, there are two primary ways people learn about local businesses, including salons: first is through social media recommendations (i.e. when their friends mention your salon), and through Google search via queries like “salons near me”, “hair spa near me”, and so on. Here we’ll discuss the latter.
To attract more people and encourage them to book your services, your business must appear on top of the search results for these queries. However, Google will pull results from Google Maps for these queries, so the answer is Google Maps SEO or local SEO.
Although local SEO might seem like a daunting task at first, actually we only need to follow four main steps:
- Claim and verify your salon listing on Google My Business
- Optimize your listing, focus on providing complete and accurate information for your potential visitors. Don’t forget to include high-quality photos of your salon
- Build local citations by listing your salon on relevant online directories (directories for salon businesses and your city’s directories)
- Get more positive reviews from your existing clients on your Google Maps listing
Do this consistently, and you’ll start climbing the Google Maps ranking, which will give you a sustainable source for booking more customer appointments.
2. Focus on selling the customer appointment, not your service
A very common mistake when marketing your salon is to put too much focus on selling your service, forgetting to sell the appointment itself. Yes, you should communicate how your salon service is better than your competitors and how your service can help your customers, but don’t forget that the objective is to get them to book an appointment.
Be concise and to the point. Quickly and clearly communicate their needs/problems and how your salon can solve them (i.e. valentine’s day package to help them prepare for their romantic dinner), then be definite about the next steps and tell them exactly how they can schedule an appointment.
3. Make it as easy as possible to book your service
Attracting potential clients to consider booking your service is already difficult, and you wouldn’t want them to leave your site or social media profile just because it’s too hard or confusing to schedule an appointment.
It’s very important to optimize the booking process so it’s as streamlined as possible:
- Make sure you have CTA buttons for appointments displayed prominently on every single page of your website. Be straight and to the point “schedule your appointment here!”.
- Make sure it’s easy to find where to schedule an appointment in your navigation menu.
- Integrate the booking solution to your social media profiles when possible (at least, link to your website’s booking page).
- Integrate an online salon scheduling and booking software that can sync automatically with your and your client’s Calendar app. So potential clients can easily view up-to-date available time slots.
- Make it as easy as possible for them to reschedule their appointments, this will also help in reducing no-shows.
4. Build relationships in your local community
Again, with your salon as a local business, it’s very important to engage with your local community.
This will provide you the opportunity to interact with your target audience and introduce your business. Personally interacting with prospective clients in your local events, for example, can help in raising brand awareness and also to establish your credibility as a trustworthy business owner.
Join local events like trade shows and expos, and participate in social causes when possible.
Also, build relationships with other businesses in your areas, especially those offering complementary services to yours so you can do cross-promotion campaigns. For example, you can partner with nearby restaurants so they’ll promote your business and you can also promote their restaurant (i.e. offer discounts) for your clients. If you don’t offer spa or nail art, you can also cross-promote with nearby spas in your area.
5. Smart social media marketing
Everyone is on social media nowadays, so it’s quite obvious that you should market your business on relevant social media platforms.
As a salon business, you should especially focus on Instagram as a visual platform. You can use your Instagram profile as a portfolio for your salon. For example, with the client’s permission, you can post your hairstylist’s best work on Instagram. This can help a lot in attracting new clients.
Consider investing in paid advertising options, especially on Instagram, but also on other relevant social platforms. Also, partner with relevant local influencers so they can help promote your salon to their followers.
6. Maximize customer retention and loyalty
Don’t solely focus on getting more appointments from new clients. Getting previous clients to come back is just as, if not even more important.
You can start a loyalty program to keep satisfied clients coming back to your salon. Encourage them for referrals, for example by offering them a discount if they can bring more people on their next visit (group discounts). You can also offer a free service for every 10th visit or so. This will encourage them to keep cooking back.
Maintaining customer loyalty is the key to success for many local businesses, and salon business is no exception. By keeping your existing customers happy, you’ll be able to convert them into advocates that will promote your business to their peers and family members. This is how you can naturally grow.