With the government’s announcement on Tuesday evening that all beauty salons would be locked down from midnight on Wednesday (March 25), it would be tempting to shut down all marketing efforts. After all, what benefit could it bring?

But before you pull the pin on your marketing plan, consider this: there will come a day when Coronavirus has gone, and you’ll be free to throw open your doors again. And when you do, you want your customers to be excited, to be ready to book and spend their money with you.

“Without marketing, your business won’t be able to survive – it certainly won’t be thriving as well as it should, says Nicole Wells of Spa and Salon Divas, and author of Future Proof Your Salon: 7 Ways to Secure Your Salon’s Future. “It can be extremely daunting for salon owners to work out how to market their salon…it’s not something they teach you in college.”

Social media
Whether you choose to focus on multiple platforms, or to specialise on only one, Nicole says it’s important to ensure you keep your audience engaged, and she suggests you do this by following the 70/20/10 rule, where 70 per cent is original, relevant and fun content, 20 per cent is shared content, and 10 per cent is promotional content. Educational posts on the beauty industry that show your knowledge, as well as happy and uplifting posts that make your followers smile, will keep your customers engaged and entertained, rather than being made to feel like they are being pitched to. In addition, Nicole says, “Share your blog posts, share your vlog posts,” to encourage cross-pollination across your channels.

While Nicole suggests you post every day (“Don’t miss a day!”), she says you need to be specific on when you hit that ‘share’ button. “Your insights will tell you more about your audience and when they are most active on your page. Review your insights and utilise this ‘inside information’.” 

Email marketing
“Sometimes salon owners are focused on getting new customers rather than nurturing existing customers,” says Nicole. At this point, our existing customers are the ones we need to appeal to, to ensure they’ll be ready and waiting when the Coronavirus pandemic is over.

A regular email newsletter allows customers to read when it is convent to them, gives you the opportunities to push products, and include click-throughs to your salon website.

“Your competitors will be fighting damn hard to win over your customers and convince them to start attending their salon, so it’s up to you to ensure you keep your customers loyal to you. Sending email newsletters is one way to keep your salon at the forefront of the minds off your customers, and keeping them loyal to you.

If you don’t have one, now’s the time to create one. Blogs provide a strong platform to strengthen your SEO strategy. “Nowadays, you would be hard-pressed to find a business that doesn’t have a website. But a website alone doesn’t always offer enough information, personality or authority to truly stand out. This is where a salon blog can differentiate you from your competitors,” says Nicole. 

Use the blog to be honest and personal about how you’re coping, and how you plan to recover from the current situation. “The more blog content you create, the more opportunities you’ll have to show up in search engines and drive organic traffic to your website,” says Nicole.

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