- Online marketing and branding will make your business stand out in the saturated salon industry
- Implement online bookings on a search engine-friendly site to make your salon a convenient, professional choice
- Inspire return visits and referrals with an enticing customer loyalty program
A visit to the salon is a refreshing monthly routine clients don’t want to miss. Offering high-quality salon services—from haircuts and manicures to facials and waxing—can help you grow a loyal customer base. But with more than 80,000 salons in the United States offering hair care alone, you need more than friendly hairstylists or selfie-worthy makeovers to get new clients through the door. To stand out in today’s crowded salon industry, you need the latest digital marketing tactics. Here are five salon marketing ideas that are a cut above the rest.
1. Optimize your website for online bookings
Online shopping sales soared 44% in 2020—that’s three times higher than the previous year’s jump. And even when shoppers aren’t buying online, they’re researching businesses on the web before heading to brick-and-mortar stores. For salons, creating a user-friendly website that’s also optimized for online bookings is a powerful way to take advantage of this online shopping growth.
Integrating online booking software with your website makes it quick and easy for people to book appointments (and even buy products and salon gift cards) while they’re visiting your site—and it saves you from rushing to the phone when you’re busy taking care of salon clients.
Pro tip: If you use a booking platform like Booker, Vagaro, or Booksy, you can link it directly on your Yelp Page so customers can book an appointment right from your listing.
If you don’t want to invest in salon software quite yet, make sure your website makes it easy to contact you. Your contact information and contact forms should be easy to spot.
Once you’ve optimized your website for bookings, getting potential clients on your site is all about search engine optimization (SEO). Nearly half of all online shoppers start their purchase journeys on search engines. Start by performing keyword research. This allows you to identify relevant words and phrases you can include in your content, like “hairdresser” or “acrylic nail design,” so search engines rank your website higher for the right search terms.
2. Manage your online reputation with Yelp
When users search for local businesses on Yelp, most make a purchase within a day. An up-to-date Yelp Business Page can help your salon business stand out to people who need to make fast decisions or have a strong intent to buy.
For many beauty salon owners, uploading quality photos is key to winning over new customers. Clients want to see results, like stunning hairstyles or flawless lash extensions, that prove your salon is the right choice. For less visual services like massages, you can use photos that show off your salon’s atmosphere. Once you claim your Yelp Business Page, you can start wowing your page visitors with picture-perfect salon marketing.
Using Yelp to communicate with your current and potential clients can also help your small business. For example, respond to reviews with gratitude and professionalism to show you have a high level of customer care, which can create loyal clients. You can also enable messages and appointment requests to gain leads and offer support, no matter what salon software you use.
If you want to catch the eyes of even more potential clients, try Yelp Ads, which promote your business in key areas across the site and mobile app—like above relevant search results. Yelp Ads are affordable salon marketing tools that get you noticed on a budget of your choice—and you’ll only pay if you get a click.
3. Create a customer loyalty program
If you want to keep your current clients coming back while enticing new clients to try your business, this salon marketing idea can help you do just that. Loyalty programs give your clients incentives to choose your salon over and over again. For example, a hair salon can offer a free color retouch after every 10 color services. A nail salon can offer 10 points per $1 spent, redeemable for discounts on any service. The more your clients visit, the more value they get.
Software like Belly and CandyBar allow you to track customer progress using a mobile app and clients don’t have to carry around a punch card. The apps also allow you to send customized offers to clients at any time.
Loyalty programs are a great way to earn clients through word-of-mouth marketing. You can offer current clients enticing freebies or bonus points when they make successful referrals and offer perks to first-time customers.
No matter how you set up your loyalty program, make sure you market it effectively. Promote it in your email marketing, on social media channels, and even via SMS (text message).
4. Hire influencers to power up your salon marketing strategy
Nearly half of all consumers (and most young adults) look to recommendations from influencers. When an influencer promotes your salon brand, their audience’s trust in your salon can grow instantly. If that influencer is a big voice in the beauty industry—and their brand aligns with yours—you can reach a large number of relevant users and win over more clients.
Fortunately, influencer marketing doesn’t have to break your budget.. To start, you can offer free services to local influencers in exchange for promoting your brand.
When you’re ready to invest, consider partnering with micro-influencers, who are those with fewer than 10,000 followers. While their followings may seem small, micro-influencers charge lower rates and often get higher engagement from niche audiences. If you find a good fit with a micro-influencer, you could reduce the amount you have to spend to land a new client.
5. Build your brand on Facebook
Nearly 20% of consumers will seek out a salon’s social media presence before booking an appointment—and 75% turn to Facebook before any other social media platform. Social media marketing that showcases a clear brand personality and visual aesthetic can make you the top choice for your target audience.
Salon owners can use Facebook to promote their brand. For the best results you should:
- Use the same brand colors and fonts in your graphics as you do with your salon marketing material
- Write posts with a distinct brand voice
- Introduce your business owners and team members (such as hairstylists, massage therapists, or colorists), and what makes them unique
- Use relevant and niche hashtags
- Plan out content that emphasizes your niche (like extensions, formal hairstyling, or organic hair dyes for a hair salon)
Get creative with your salon marketing ideas
Whether you own a well-known beauty business or a new salon, marketing is crucial for continued growth. These salon marketing tips help you harness the rising power of ecommerce by ensuring you show up on search engines, online review sites like Yelp, and more. As your updated strategy helps you grow your revenue and customer base, learn how to expand your business to take your next steps.