A marketing plan is an essential resource for any salon, and even more pertinent for a group, in order to ensure consistent brand messages across all salons. The first step to creating a marketing plan is to know your objectives.
Do you want to get more clients through the door, encourage the uptake of colour service or increase retail sales?
The plan will ensure all your salons have the same marketing material, featuring consistent branding, so every salon’s marketing and point of sale will be the same. This way, clients feel they are visiting the same business no matter which salon they visit – your brand message will be consistent.
The Contemporary Way
At Contemporary Salons, we use a 12-month marketing planner across all salons, so we have a consistent message across all nine outlets. Advance planning is essential, so you can organise posters, point-of-sale material, templates for adverts, and so on.
We break our planner down by each major area of the business and focus on each quarter, creating the marketing materials in advance so that they are in place for every promotion.
It takes time to pull it all together, but once you have the plan it will help give you a clear focus and make any campaign far easier to implement.
You will need a marketing plan that employs a multi-point approach which allow your business to use different methods to achieve your objectives.
We have the group marketing plan which all salons follow which is shared at the beginning of the year to all salons. Our marketing periods run from January to March, April to June, July to September and October to December. Marketing is delivered from a number of platforms using various resources.
Don’t neglect the salon itself when it comes to displaying your marketing material. It’s a great way to reinforce your brand values and keep clients and those passing the salon updated on promotions, including those designed to encourage uptake of services, such as colour.
Visual in-salon marketing can include posters and mirror clings, all featuring imagery that reflects your brand. But in-salon marketing doesn’t end here, you should also consider newsletters, reward cards, and introduce-a-friend offers.
Websites are very easily neglected, so make sure they are incorporated into any marketing planner. Do you need to schedule information about promotions to appear on your home page, for example, and does imagery need updating to reflect the current marketing visuals?
Text messages are now an established and an effective way of informing clients of promotions and can be a great way to encourage lapsed clients back into the salon. Your salon software should enable you to target these in line with any campaign.
Contemporary Salons gives out cards to every new client and all clients will also get a text asking them to leave a short survey on their visit to the salon.
This is a great way to measure client satisfaction and deal with any issues in a timely way, helping create a loyal client base. It’s particularly useful to turn someone who has visited the salon for the first time to take advantage of a promotional offer into a loyal client.
Computer System Customer Relationship Management
With a group of salons it is vital that all the salons use a computer software program to manage the business, so as a group you can share results on how each salon is performing.
Social Media is another often underused marketing platform.
We have separate 12-month planners that we use for the salons, the academy and the art team. We share the social media calendar for the month ahead with all salons so they can share on their social media pages too.
All salons look after their own social media, so they can share their own salon’s content to make the social media personal to each salon, but also include the company’s posts to keep a consistent approach. It’s really important that all salons understand the brand and how adverts and photos should be shared on social media so it reflects your company branding.
Our salons focus on the quality of followers, rather than the quantity, with an emphasis on gaining followers in their local area.
If the main aim of your social media is to gain new clients, you won’t achieve this if only 10% of your followers live locally, no matter how many followers you have. We aim for at least 90% of followers to live within 30 miles of the salon.
Keeping up with new changes with Facebook and Instagram is time consuming but essential and its worth checking out some of the other up-and-coming social media platforms, including Snapchat and TikTok.
I would say, though, that it’s better to do a good job on two platforms than try and cover every social media platform out there and let standards slip.
So, you can now understand why it’s so important for your salon group to have consistency when it comes to marketing, to avoid client confusion and brand dilution.
A plan is also a great way to target traditionally quieter times for your business, ensuring your salons are busy all-year-round – which as business owners, is ultimately what we want.