Are you looking for the best way to market your salon, spa or clinic online in minimal time, for free?
It’s hard to find time for marketing as a salon, spa or clinic owner. You’re running a full column of clients, looking after your team and trying to find time to keep clients coming through the door. Often you haven’t got the time or resources to invest in advanced marketing techniques or platforms.
That’s why we asked Stevee Devonda, Marketing Manager at Iron and Ivy Hair and Beauty in Queenstown, for his top tips for salon owners to market their business effectively online, without needing to invest a lot of time or money.
The result? Stevee’s 5-step digital marketing blueprint for salons, spas and clinics, that will lead you on the path to digital marketing success!
Step 1: Define your target audience and create personas
I think a key mistake that businesses make is not understanding who their audience is. So, my first tip would be to start by thinking about your existing clients and who you’d like to visit your salon and then create a set of audience personas.
You don’t need to go crazy (we only have three personas) but it helps you get into the head of your clients and once you understand who they are, you can find the best ways to reach them.
When creating your personas, ask yourself questions like:
- Who would be our dream clientele?
- Where do they spend their time online?
- Why should they choose us?
For example, one of our personas is Sarah, who is aged 30-40 and loves shopping online and posting pictures on Instagram. We know the best way to reach Sarah is by posting our services and products on Instagram. Knowing who your audience is will help you know how to reach them.
Step 2: Create clear goals for your marketing efforts
Once you’ve established your audience, think about your goals! Is your goal to attract new clients or to add value to the ones you have and increase rebooking rates?
Sometimes we get overwhelmed with where to start and what to do first, so KISS (Keep It Simple, Sweet) and set a goal that’s achievable and measurable and work towards that.
For example, if you want to add value and increase rebookings, then creating a simple Instagram post with an offer like; ‘rebook your next appointment today and receive a free basin treatment next time,” is a great way to increase your rebooking rates at minimal cost.
If your goal is to attract new clients, you could create an introductory deal post offering a discounted rate for new clients if they like and share your post, then set a goal amount for this. Don’t forget to reward yourself when you achieve your goals!
Step 3: Choose the right marketing channels for your target audience
The marketing channels you choose for your business will depend on your audience personas, as you’ll need to use the channels you’re more likely to reach them on.
At Iron and Ivy, we use three main marketing channels:
We love Instagram! It’s where our younger client base spends their time, so we’re always finding ways to add engaging content through our Instagram posts and our stories.
Instagram stories have been a great way for us to demonstrate authenticity and showcase not only our beautiful work, but also the culture we have at Iron and Ivy. People buy from people, not products, so with that in mind, we like to engage with both our existing clientele and also people thinking about coming to the studio with before and after transformations, hair tutorials, product reviews, quizzes, polls and reels!
We encourage our clients to join us for live Q&As with our Art Director Lauren, and also contact us for bookings and ask about anything through our Instagram. We have even set up automated answers to our regular questions to handle the flow of enquiries – this may not work for every spa or salon but we’ve made it work for us.
We use Facebook for our older clientele of between 30 and 50, where we post pictures of our work and regular updates about bookings and products that we sell online or in the studio. We have linked our Instagram and Facebook together so when we post on Instagram it automatically posts to our Facebook page, which has saved us hours!
3. Kitomba email marketing
We use Kmail in Kitomba 1 to market to our client database. We also use the in-built Mailchimp integration to send our weekly studio updates to our clients. This is a really useful feature that some salons may overlook, but there’s a lot of value in reaching out to both your existing clients and those clients you may have not seen for a while with an enticing offer.
To find the right marketing channels for your business, read our guide: The best marketing channels for salons, spas and clinics
Step 4: Plan, create and schedule your marketing content in advance
Once you know who your target audience is and what channels are best to reach them, it’s time to create a content plan, create the content, and schedule it in advance to save time.
To create content quickly and for free, you can use an online design tool like Canva, which provides a range of templates for all types of marketing and platforms.
A great way to save time with your marketing is to use a social media planning app, such as Later or Planoly, where you can upload and schedule a months’ worth of posts in just a few hours.
Both apps have free and basic plans which offer limited scheduled posts and help with your hashtags and discovery to new clients, allowing you to save a lot of time by spending very little towards your marketing goals.
Step 5: Measure your marketing impact and adjust as needed
When you’re marketing online, it’s important to track, measure and analyse the results of your efforts.
I love using Google Analytics to do this. It’s free to use and install on your website (you may want to ask your developer or website host for help on getting it connected) but it allows you to review all the traffic reaching your website, where they came from and what they’re doing when they get there.
By reviewing the information on Google Analytics you can see where people leave your site and how long they spend on your pages. You can also see how they found your website, whether it’s through Google search, email marketing, social media or digital advertising.
This will help you to see what platforms and marketing efforts result in the most website traffic and online bookings for your business. You can find out so much information from Google Analytics and make changes to your website that can increase your conversion rate from new client enquiries to booking clients in your salon.
Start your 5-step digital marketing journey to success
So there you have it, Stevee’s 5-step digital marketing blueprint for salons, spas and clinics, that will lead you on the path to digital marketing success!
Save time and money while maximising your marketing efforts with these top tips for effectively marketing your salon, spa or clinic online with minimal time and budget.
For more marketing tips from industry experts, visit our salon marketing guide.
If you’d like to get started with paid digital advertising, check out our online advertising guide.