13 Low or No Cost Salon Marketing Tips to Ignite Your Salon

by Pam Stellema

in Business Development, Salon and Spa Marketing

Every salon owner (including you) must market their business continuously.

It not only drives new clients to your salon, but it keeps existing clients returning to purchase products and services which in turn increases turnover and profit.

All this activity requires an investment of your time, lots of planning, and in some cases, quite a bit of money also.

But it doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg to create effective marketing strategies that will bring more clients and more money through your salon doors.

In this practical article, I’ve included 13 low-budget, but successful strategies, you can use to boost your salon profits without spending a fortune to do so.

Tip 1. Write for local publications regularly.

Goal: To attract new clients to your salon.

Approach your local magazine, newspaper, and neighbourhood flyer, with an offer to write a regular short beauty-based articles for their publication.

Articles help to establish you as a credible and local expert in your industry. This makes you the go-to person in their trading zone.

Be sure you check and double check for grammar and punctuation errors before you submit your article, and remember to include your contact details at the end of each article.

There’s no harm in asking for a free or discounted advertisement in exchange. You may or may not get one, but your article will still be great advertising for your salon.

Recommended Module: Writing to Attract New Salon Clients

Tip 2. Provide group presentations.

Goal: To attract new clients to your salon.

Local clubs and associations are always looking for guest speakers to present to their members free of charge. You can easily source these groups by asking your own clients for suggestions.

Simply provide an interesting presentation and/or demonstration to your local groups keeping them focused on their particular interests. E.g. golfing ladies may be interested in repairing sun damage.

To encourage them to visit your salon, simply offer a $10 salon voucher to each person after your presentation. This will also provide an opportunity for you to chat to their members, and build some rapport which is often the first step in getting new people through your doors.

Recommended Module: Client Attraction

Tip 3. Leverage local businesses’ employees.

Goal: To attract new clients to your salon.

Approach local businesses that have large numbers of employees, and offer to provide 10 minute back, neck and shoulder massages at no cost.

You could do 5 per hour (with a little bit of time after each for a tidy up) and for an investment of 1 hour, you’ve created the prospect of 5 new clients for your salon.

Remember to capture their details and leave some salon vouchers to encourage them to visit your salon later on.

Recommended Module: Client Attraction

Tip 4. Leverage local businesses’ clients.

Goal: To attract new clients to your salon.

You’ve probably heard the term ‘joint venture’ before, but may not be totally sure of what it entails.

When it comes to getting new clients for your business, it’s a simple win-win arrangement that you enter into with another suitable local business.

By promoting their businesses to your clients, you can ask them to do the same for you.

Making a special offer using vouchers can get lots of new clients in through your doors, and then it’s up to you to keep them coming back.

Recommended Module: Client Attraction Using Joint Ventures

Tip 5.  Increase the number of male clientele. 

Goal: To attract new clients to your salon.

In most salons, 95% (or more) of clients are women.  That means there’s a very good chance that over 80% of those women have a husband or partner who needs either a bit of TLC, or a tidy up.

By giving each of your female clients a half price voucher for a man-only massage or facial, you could considerably extend the number of male clients you attract into your salon.  Tell her that when her “male” redeems his voucher, she will also receive a voucher for the same offer.

Once your new male client has been in for his first treatment, don’t miss the opportunity to re-book him.  Men make great clients, and love being pampered.

Recommended Module: Client Attraction

Tip 6.  Ask your clients to introduce a friend.

Goal: To attract new clients to your salon.

Offer your clients a salon voucher to give to a friend who has never been to your salon before.

To make it worth her while to do so, give her a separate reward voucher for each person she sends along. 

Recommended Module: Client Attractions Using Referrals

Tip 7.  Have a one-week salon birthday celebration.

Goal: To retain existing clients and increase their dollar spend amount.

Everyone loves a party, so remember to celebrate your salon birthday each year.

Let your clients know that everyone who has an appointment during the birthday celebration week will receive a small salon gift.  This can be in the form of a lucky dip made up of salon vouchers, with one full day of pampering to be won amongst the prizes.

Make sure to have glasses of bubbly and some birthday cupcakes on hand to give to your clients during that week.  You may even be able to do a joint venture with a local bakery and send your clients to them if they give you a special price for the cupcakes.

Decorate your salon in birthday mode for the week, and make it a fun time for all.

Recommended Module: Salon Marketing

Tip 8.  Run a re-booking promotion to encourage your clients to make their next appointments.

Goal: To retain existing clients and increase their dollar spend amount.

Re-booking your clients is one of the best strategies for client retention, and therefore deserves your best effort with every client.

Ask each client who re-books to write their name, contact number and the date of her next appointment on a slip of colourful paper, and place it into a glass bowl.

Each client who re-books their next appointment before leaving the salon goes into the draw to win a pampering service.

The monthly winner picks up their voucher when they come in for their pre-booked appointment.

Recommended Module: Successful Re-Booking

Tip 9.  Host an information evening

Goal: To gain new clients and retain existing clients and increase their dollar spend amount.

Invite your VIP clients and their friends along to an informal information evening, where they can watch service and product demonstrations.

Involve as many attendees as possible in your demonstrations so that they can experience a treatment or product on the night.

Have special VIP offers on services and products available for purchase throughout the evening.

Ask you product supplier to provide a lucky door prize, as well as someone to talk to your clients about their at-home skin care needs on the night.

Don’t forget to offer a glass of bubbly or juice along with some nibbles to make it a great night for all.

Recommended Module: Salon Marketing

Tip 10.  Add a New Client Voucher to your website.

Goal: To attract new clients to your salon.

Don’t let those visitors to your website just browse and leave.

Give them a solid reason to make an appointment in your salon by providing a one-use only salon voucher that they can redeem on their first visit.

Let’s face it, everyone loves something for free and a salon voucher may be all it needs to get a new client into your salon.

Recommended Module: Create Website Content That Wins Clients

Tip 11.  Create ‘Solution’ packages to meet particular skin conditions.

Goal: To retain existing clients and increase their dollar spend amount.

Are many of your clients getting stuck in a rut, having the same services every time they visit your salon?

To break them out of this routine, group together suitable services (and possibly at-home products), that will benefit particular skin conditions, and sell them as a ‘Solution’ package.

You could include Solutions such as a Sun Damage Package, Problem Skin Package, Pigmentation Package, Mature Skin Package, etc.

You know what your salon clients need most, and therefore you can determine which services and products to provide to create your skin care Solution Packages.

Recommended Module: Packaging Your Services

Tip 12.  Use the power of the impulse purchase.

Goal: To increase the client’s dollar spend amount.

When clients make an impulse purchase in your salon, that’s a total bonus for you.

Having several impulse purchase displays near where your client is paying for her services is a great way to encourage this behaviour.

To maximise your impulse purchase sales, ensure your displays look clean and inviting, are visibly priced, have a tester and are not too expensive.

Just another $30 in additional sales each day can add up to nearly $8000 extra in revenue each year.

Recommended Module: Increasing Sales

Tip 13.  Be unique in your trading zone.

Goal: To attract new clients and retain existing clients.

What can you offer to your clients that they simply can’t get anywhere else in your area?

Run a brainstorming session with your team to find out what clients are asking for that you could add to your offering.

Make sure that whatever you decide to introduce is really in demand by a large number of clients and also that you can offer it at a price they’re willing to pay.

Having something different locks clients into your salon and prevents them from straying to the salon down the street.

Remember – better beats cheaper hands-down.

Recommended Module: Client Attraction

So there you have it.  13 simple marketing strategies that will help you to gain new clients, retain the clients you already have, and increase the amount of money they spend in your salon.

If you can successfully meet these 3 criteria, then you’re well on the way to having a highly successful salon.

Copyright ©2016 SalonSavy – Images: freedigitalphotos.net

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Pam Stellema

Pam is an industry experienced coach, salon owner, speaker, author and copywriter.She works beside salon and spa owners to show them how to effectively grow their profits and remain in business for the long-term.
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