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By Malcolm Gibbons:

One of the most common requests I get from clients is to give advertising help. They say that they need to do marketing and can I help them with an ad? I generally answer ‘sure’ and then ask some questions like, what’s your budget? Where would you be advertising? Why do you want to advertise? What goals have you worked out for the results you want to achieve? 

These are just some initial questions that need to be answered before advertising can begin. Most people haven’t thought about the answers to these, or even any other questions that need to be answered when considering advertising. It comes down to what people want is not necessarily what they need when it comes to advertising. 

What most people I talk to need, is to have answers to questions that they do not yet know to ask themselves. Additionally, advertising is just one aspect of a marketing plan that a Salon must have and marketing starts well before any advertising gets underway. What I mean by that is marketing is all about what you do, how you do it and how you look and behave whilst doing it from a total Salon perspective as well as each individual within the business.

Most salon owners are trying to gain new clients and some are successful in doing so… But I can guarantee that they are losing the very same clients (or a great number of them) that they spent money on to gain because their Salon performance was not up to par. Did you know that someone who visits your business is a customer, even twice. Only when they return for a third (and subsequent) visit can you start calling them a client. 

Unfortunately many salons are in the business of attracting customers and lose them because of their ‘Internal Marketing’. So what am I revealing here? Well marketing comes before advertising and part of marketing is how you present your salon to your prospective client. Get it right inside your business and you stand a much better chance of securing a long term Client than just a fleeting visit by a customer.

If you are currently feeling harried, stressed, worn out and just plain drained when it comes to your business, I can bet that your salon will reflect that feeling and so will your team (although maybe at a lesser level) from how the salon looks through to how clients are treated, in fact its total performance will be under threat. When was the last time you went outside and looked … I mean really looked at your salon, from a prospective clients view? 

Is it the image you want it to be? Are there lights that don’t work? Is your signage looking old and tired? Are the windows clean? Ask yourself would you walk through the door of this business and trust the people inside with your hair needs? If not… fix what is wrong with the picture as soon as you can, if yes, then move inside, what is the reception like? Does someone greet you immediately with a warm welcoming smile? 

Are you looked after during the visit? Do you get an experience that you would want to come back and experience again and again or do you just get a quick service from a disinterested operator who is more interested in themselves & what movies they have watched than helping clients with their needs…

I could continue here with many of the small (and sometimes large) critical mistakes salons are making every day and not even realising that it is this that is causing either their very own minor or major recession within the business. However, I am sure you are aware of at least some of the areas you are under performing in. 

Stop burying your head in the sand! The whole purpose of this article is to give you a wakeup call and help you understand that your ‘Internal Marketing’ needs to be right before trying to attract new clients, and only getting customers. I ask you again…When was the last time you did an internal audit of your salons appearance, client care systems, staff training programme and management efficiency and effectiveness? 

If it was ages ago (or never) then it’s time now to review and if necessary to revamp and rev up your business for keeping clients that your advertising dollars are working hard at to attract. In fact have your internal marketing working well and you generally will not need to do extensive external advertising, as the continual flow of new clients through a managed referral system will keep your Salon busy and buzzing for a long time. 

So stop lamenting the external recession and take time now to review your salons performance and make needed changes for the better. Better client experiences, better staff motivation, better revenue and better profit. Oh and also a much less stressful day, week, month and year at work for you.

Why don’t you give us a call at Salon Business Coach, we’ll have a chat and get down to the tin tacks of your business in a complimentary 30 minute Session. You’ll leave the call feeling refreshed with new ideas to apply immediately – to book your free session call Victoria on 021 419 477

 “The principle I like to follow in business and in life is simply to give something of value to others, to pay it forward. My passion is helping business owners grow their businesses in outstandingly uncomplicated ways. I’d love you to take advantage of one of these free sessions – it’d be good to hear from you!” 

 With over 30 years of industry experience Malcolm Gibbons, Salon Business Coach, specialises in helping Hair Salons, Beauty Clinics and Spa owners refocus their business goals and unleash their true potential.

Discover more at salonbusinesscoach.com