Are Today’s Groupon Deals Salon Killers or Salon Builders?

How to Create a “Deal” that will Retain Clients and
Make Your Salon Money

Running an offer on a “Deal Site”

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for example Groupon, Living Social or Gilt, can help you put more people into your salon’s chairs.

But it’s more than just making an “attractive” offer to the deal site’s list that determines whether or not this type of marketing works for you.

And believe it or not these other elements that make the deal successful are within your control.

So what are those other elements that will make it work?

Let’s start with your selection of the “Deal Site” you’ll be doing business with. Each “Deal Site” has a different audience (membership) so you’ll want to choose the one(s) that best reflect your salon’s target profile (ideal client).

Then onto the offer itself. Spend time on creating your deal(s). Think about the number of new clients you’d like to see, the amount of $ you’d like to generate, as well as gross margin %, add-ons, retention and re-booking rates. (I have a handy “deal-designer” tool to use. See form below.)

Whatever deal you come up with make sure it’s one that will make you money.

Ok, so maybe you won’t make the same amount you do on a “regular” service but that’s ok – you do have someone in your chair who you can bring back into the salon.

Remember not everyone who uses a deal site is a “deal junkie”.

While there are “hair deal junkies”; people who end up clipping “coupons” whenever they need a haircut or color, there are people who are genuinely looking for a new “hair home” (a salon I work with recently offered a deal where the retention rate was only 2% less than their retention rate from “organic” first time visitors).

Therefore you’ll want to prep your team for the deal – after all it’s how they treat the “deal” clients that will be a major contributor to your deal’s success.

By following this step by step plan you’ll not only put more people in your chairs during the “deal period” but long after the deal’s over.

For a detailed step by step outline on “Deal Making” and to get your own copy of my “Deal Designer” Fill out the form below and we’ll send the documents to you right away!

To Life!

How Salon Facebook Fans Fury Turned into a Virtual Tsunami – It May Kill This Salon (don’t let it happen to yours)

How could a successful salon/spa owner jeopardize her business’s future – with just one slip of the lip? Easier than you think – especially in today’s world where social media rules the day.

Being a salon owner (or an owner of any small business) tests our patience (and customer service skills) – even on the best of days. But it’s particularly stressful when a client’s kid is crying right in the middle of your salon – and it’s a busy Saturday (of a holiday weekend). In the service business there simply is never a good time to lose your cool – Because if you lose it, the heat could be turned on so high you could lose your business.

So how is this possible?

With Facebook and other social media outlets putting power in the hands of your clients – they can make you or break you.

That’s what happened to M Spa Salon & Day Spa when on Saturday May 25th owner Michelle Mott slipped up click here for the full story.

What occurred next could only be described as a salon stoning – on Facebook.

And here’s where Michelle – probably scared out of her wits when she saw the speed at

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which this Facebook Fan Fury became a virtual Tsunami – she ran for cover and took down the Salon’s Facebook Page, failed to offer a response for more than two days after the original post, used her lawyer as a spokesperson, and had the lawyer defend her actions – rather than offering an apology (which finally came on Thursday).

So as a salon owner stay as cool as you possibly can – and if your salon is caught somehow in a social media tsunami – try to stay cool, calm and composed as best you can– and respond quickly and positively.

And for heaven’s sake don’t get your attorney involved on the web.

5 Simple Strategies for Using Pinterest To Grow Your Salon

In less than two years Pinterest, a Virtual Pinboard with 20 million members has catapulted into it’s new position as the darling of the social networking scene

So what does it actually do? Pinterest lets you organize and share all the beautiful things you find on the web – and, when properly understood and worked can be great tool to help you grow your salon business.

Why is Pinterest a great tool?

First of all it’s all about the visual – and if you’re like most salon owners you’re a visual person.

So it goes without saying that you’ll have a natural affinity for it. At the very least you won’t struggle writing copy!

Second, like the majority of your clients, Pinterest is decidedly female – please excuse me if I sound sexist but frankly if you’re operating a barber shop I don’t recommend your spending your precious resources – time, money, energy on Pinterest. According to Inside Network’s AppData, women are almost completely responsible for Pinterest’s Success – in fact 97 percent of the site’s users are women.

Third, as the power of Pinterest unfolds there will be other business opportunities for your salon to take advantage of.

But just like when you build a house, you’ll want to make sure that you build Pinterest right – from the ground up.

Want complete details? Watch this video

Here are five points you’ll want to be sure to cover if you want Pinterest to work for your business.

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  1. Add the “Pin it” Button to Your Site. –What your “Pin it” Button does is allows other people to share your content – and it goes to all their followers.
  2. Create a Pinterest account specifically for your business and set up the account properly
    –Use the name of your business – not your first and last name – unless of course that is the name of your brand.
    –Choose your brand as the “user name” (this is the name that appears on the top of your Pinterst page) Note, this user name is not carved in stone. Unlike Facebook where you can’t change name of your page after you have 25 fans (“likes”) Pinterest allows you to change your user name at any time.
    –Directly state (in the action section) what your salon is all about is all about and use key words to build back-links.
  3. Create your own original content (especially images) so you’re strategically linked.

    –Blog posts
    –Opt in pages
    –Product pages
    –Listings
    –You Tube Channel
    –Results (before and after’s) and Testimonia

    Strategic links then help drive traffic to where it best serves you in marketing your salon.

  4. Pin useful information onto Pinterest

–Videos
–Info graphics
–Tutorials
–How-To’s

By creating this information you’ll not only keep people on Pinterest but you’ll pique their curiosity and get them to your website or blog.

5. Create captions that always feature
– CTA’s (Call to Action)
– Keywords
– Prices (where applicable)
– Links

Doing this ensures you get the most amount of engagement and exposure per pin.

Interested in learning more? Attend this Free “All About Pinterest” webinar.

It’s short – the info part is only 50 minutes – and well worth your time as it could change the future of you and your salon forever. Click here to watch!

Quotation: If you’re willing to do only what’s easy life, will be hard. If you’re willing to do what’s hard, life will be easy – Joe Polish

What Not To Do With A Dog Yelp Review!

It’s only normal for your stomach to sink when your salon gets a lousy Yelp review.

But if you’re harnessing the power of social media you’re bound to get a doggy review or two.

Since you can’t remove a lousy review don’t squander this opportunity in disguise by trying to:

  1. Accuse Yelp of extortion for your not advertising with them. Why? Because you clearly don’t know how Yelp works and you’ll just look like a big paranoid baby to them.
  2.  Crying libel – that the review damaged your reputation and hurt your feelings. Why? Because if you can’t stand the heat get out of the kitchen. The Internet simply isn’t for you.
  3. Cajole users into giving you good reviews to smother the bad ones.

According to Yelp’s director of business outreach, Luther Lowe, in explaining how Yelp’s robot filter works – “Businesses that are pretty aggressive about soliciting almost always have a lot of reviews filtered.” Click here for full Yelp article.

Fuhgeddaboutit! Facebook For Salons

Whether you like it or not this past Friday, March 30th Facebook converted your Salon Facebook Fan Page to its new Timeline Design.

So if you’re someone who is using or wants to use Facebook to market your salon make sure to visit your page, you’ll have to make some adjustments to get your page to look as you want it to look – within Facebook’s guidelines of course.

NOTE: the content on this post is from article written by Facebook Guru Mari Smith one of my mentors with whom I’ve been training so I can bring you the best information and advice on how to maximize Facebook for your salon (to read Mari’s article go tohttp://www.marismith.com/facebook-timeline-for-business-pages-key-points/). I highly recommend you subscribe to Mari’s excellent information by joining her list.

This article covers the 21 key points or the majority of the new settings you’ll need to know about timeline for pages.

It can be used as a handy conversion checklist – whether you’ve already converted your Page or not.

These 21 key points are:

1. Deadline March 30th

Facebook will automatically convert your page unless you convert it first. So make sure you’re looking like you want to look for your Fans and convert it now.

2. Preview

Before you publish your new page preview it by using the preview option on the top of your old page. At a minimum have an attractive look cover page (see Facebook for details on cover page dimensions).

3. Cover Image

At 851x 315 pixels it’s much larger than the graphic on your old page. But please pay attention to the fine print because if you upload an image that’s smaller (minimum size 399 pixels) than the official size it’ll be stretched to the larger dimension.

4. Image Rules the Day

Facebook’s put the kibosh on your putting the following on your cover:

  • Contact information (put it in your about section)
  • Calls to Action (CTA’s)
  • Arrows pointing to your Like or Share Button

So make sure you check the Page Guidelines

5. Profile Picture

The photo you upload must be at least 180×180 pixels. Remember your profile picture is the primary instantly recognizable image that tracks you throughout Facebook (on your posts and comments).

BTW Facebook frowns on page owners changing their profile picture too often.

6. Landing Tab

On your new Timeline Page you can no longer set a default-landing tab. So make good use of your cover image.

7. App URL’s

Your custom apps all still function. This includes the Fan-Gate feature if you have one. Each tab/app still has a unique URL, so you can still direct traffic from inside or outside Facebook to any “landing page” you’d like.

8. Showcase apps

Showcase apps are right below your cover image and you probably know them as “tabs”. They are now displayed as apps or views and you can have up to 12 – but only four on display. The first Showcase app is always photos and it cannot be replaced or removed.

9. Custom thumbnails.

Now you can add custom thumb nails (111×74 pixels) to all your apps. It’s an opportunity for you to have seamless branding messages, CTA’s and specials.

10. Liked Button and Interest List (s)

The Liked button visually let’s fans know that they’ve already liked a page. When you hover over the Liked button an Interest List(s) appears – this is a new feature for your Fans (see #11)

11. Interest Lists

Encourage your Fans to add you to their interest lists – and let them know what topic is best – for example my Page would be best added to a list called Salon Marketing Tips, Salon Management Tips or Salon Leadership Tips. Yours could be Hair Help or Skin Tips etc.

12. Milestones

You can go back in time and add salon/spa milestones

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on your Timeline. When you do this they’ll post at the right date and go out in the news feeds of your fans…creating more visibility and engagement for your salon.

13. Wall filters

Your page walls now have four filters

  • Highlights
  • Posts by Page
  • Posts by Others
  • Friend Activity

You cannot set the wall to be posts by everyone – the default is always Highlights – but go to your administrative panel in your page settings to manage permissions as to who can post on the wall.

14. Pin Posts

You can pin any post made on the page to the top of the wall for up to 7 days. But I recommend rotating the posts every 1-2 days as hopefully you’re getting repeat visitors.

15. Highlight Posts

Your page administrators can choose to display any post made by the Page or by others as “double wide” – it’ll spread across both columns of the Timeline.

16. Posts by Others

Posts by others (both fans and non-fans) are in a small box at the top right called Recent Posts by Others.

You can scroll in this field without leaving your wall.

  • Click “More Posts” (lower left of box and use your vertical scroll bar or mouse scroll wheel

or

  • Click “See All” for the Pop-up Box.

17. Highlights

Sorry but you can’t set a default wall view- it’s always Highlights. So be creative and change your cover image regularly.

18. Personalization

Page Timelines are personalized for each person viewing – every page wall includes “friend activity” at the top right where the person viewing will see one post from the past from a friend (or a Facebook user to whom the viewer has subscribed). For further details on this point I recommend you check out Mari’s article www.marismith.com/facebook-timeline-for-business-pages-key-points/.

19. Adjust Photos

This new feature allows you to reposition photos shared by you or others on your page (hover over the photo, click the edit pencil, then click “Reposition photo”

20. Messages

Fans and non-fans alike can now private Message fan administrators. You can turn it off but I’d encourage you to leave it on, as you’ll want your Fans to engage with you.

21. Administrative Panel

You have to dig deeper in your administrative panel to find features that before may have been just one click away. For example to view your “Hidden Posts” (posts Facebook flags as spam and are visible only to the Page admins, and person/page who made the post and friends of that person/page) you previously only had to click on the Hidden Posts Link under your Wall on the Left. Now it’s five clicks away! Admin Panel > Mange>Use Activity Log>All (upper right menu) > Spam.

Ok so there you have it- 21 points to be aware of on your new Facebook Page.

For a more in-depth look at your Facebook Timeline Page go to www.marismith.com/facebook-timeline-for-business-pages-key-points/) and check out the complete tutorial.

Facebook Pages for Salons…Fuhgeddaboutit!

 

 

Will iPhone’s Siri Give Your Salon a Recommendation?

Whether you’re an iPhone lover or not you’ve got to be impressed with Apple’s having sold over FOUR MILLION 4s’s in the first weekend of its launch.

So what does this new iPhone have to do with your salon/spa business?

A lot – condensed into one word one – Siri.

Siri is Apple’s voice recognition program -technically speaking.

But it’s more than that. Siri is for the four million+ iPhone

4s’s owners an intelligent personal assistant – efficient,knowledgeable, professional, compliant, uncomplaining, and witty with a slight attitude.

She’s a “do-engine”. A “do-engine” who on command dials your office, schedules a meeting, or reminds you of an appointment. She can manage travels plans and reservations,coordinate local services,

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find and plan entertainment, purchase e-commerce goods and serve as gateway to 3000 e-commerce service APIs on the Web.

Beyond that, Siri can learn your preferences and transactional information, so that she can automate any of these transactions without user involvement

So what impact could Siri (or Iris on the Android) have on your business?

Think of it like this. Now instead of having to use your smart phone to access Google or Yahoo (search engines) when you want to find a place to get a manicure, message, haircut, facial or more – millions of people will simply ask their “do-engine”Siri “where can I get a manicure”?

And Siri will say “I’ve found a number of salons near you and give them a list of salons complete with star reviews, distance,and the ability to get map and directions.

Now wouldn’t you want your salon/spa to be at the tip of Sari’s tongue? Of course you would.

How do you do that? Stephanie Hobbs has a great article on Search Engine Land called: 3 Simple StepsTo Get Siri & Her Friends To Talk Up Your Local Business.

In her article,she recommends three steps to help you rank better with Siri recommendations:

1. Makesure your Google Places Page is accurate and complete

2. Generate positive reviews and content like photos and videos

3. Make sure your Yelp profile is accurate and complete (Yelp is one of the data sources Siri uses).

The bottom line for any salon/spa owner is to make sure you have a solid local presence – it’ll help you with your mobile efforts – which by the way is growing by leaps and bounds.

And as impressive as Siri is– it’s only the beginning.