The web has made reaching new clients easier and cheaper than ever. But, having a good website still relies on people finding you or you directing them there in the first place. And, to stay in the minds of customers, how do you get them there regularly?
Email is a great way of staying in touch with customers with offers and sales messages because you can get in their inbox, ie. you are pushing the marketing message to them rather than waiting for them to find you. But there are a few things to think about when it comes to using email to market to your beauty clients and I want to use our salon newsletter as an example because in my marketing experience, it is still one of the most successful case studies I have.
Email Marketing Strategy
A good email marketing campaign for a beauty salon (or any business) relies on a few basic principles.
- The web is a busy place. Not only do you need people to find you in the first place, you need to have something that they want when they find you. Why should they subscribe to your newsletter in the first place? What’s in it for them?
- The way you send your emails matters. There are rules to make sure your email doesn’t get seen as spam. If you cut corners, it may cost you.
- Regularity is key. People will begin to expect your email. So, if you are going to commit to sending newsletters, you can’t do it when it suits you. It needs to be on a regular basis so that your marketing communication is trusted when it lands in your customers in-box.
- The content of your newsletters needs to be balanced. Yes, you are trying to sell more to people, but they also need to see value. A mix of sales messages with offers, advice and trends offers something for them and something for you. Arguably, your advice can also push towards your beauty treatments or products.
In 2005, we integrated email marketing into our Truly Scrumptious website using an online system called Campaign Monitor. The system doesn’t cost a penny to use until you send messages, and then it’s only about $5 per campaign and $0.01 per name (500 names would cost $10 – approx. £6.30). It’s worth looking into as it’s easy to manage when it’s all set up and any competent web designer should be able to set it up on your website.
What you end up with is a template for you to send emails as well as a form on your website that lets people subscribe to your newsletter. But, why should they?
Cost Of Acquisition
Early on, we worked out that a client will potentially spend at least £20 on a visit, and then hopefully like it enough to come back and spend more. So, we decided to offer people £11 worth of beauty treatment vouchers simply for giving us their details.
We now have 1,750 subscribers (Aug 10) and get about 80 new ones each month.
Then, on the 1st week day of every month we send out our newsletter. It offers people the option to unsubscribe (a legal requirement) and has a mixture of content with our monthly offer, product updates and beauty trends that are relevant to our services.
After having the template set up, we write this ourselves every month with no additional programming charges, and, because Campaign Monitor uses a system that is designed for e-mail marketing, the way it sends the e-mails works with all spam filters – meaning more of your e-mails will land.
With its advanced reporting features as well, you can see who opens your emails and if they click on any of the links. This helps you focus on the things your customers are actually interested when you create your next newsletter or customer email.
How To Do Email Marketing Even Easier
Why not ask your customers for their details when they come into your salon and add them to your email software or database? Each month, you can then send them a personal email. This is time consuming but you can test it to see if it works.
You will need to send emails individually and DO NOT BCC YOUR CUSTOMERS or send one email to your entire list in one go. This creates privacy issues and by BCCing your email to multiple address, you are flagging your email as spam, which may stop your emails getting through and could end up with your email domain name getting banned by many email servers.
ePOS Computer System Emails
Many salon computer systems (we use iSalon) have email marketing built in. These are also good for sending email messages to groups of clients with specific messages, eg. men only, or people who have a treatment booked in the upcoming 2 weeks. But, as far as delivery of the emails (ie. technically how they are delivered) and legal compliance, I can not speak for all systems, so don’t know how effective they could be.
Email is great for staying in touch with clients, and, because it’s a two way communication tool you may end up getting replies straight back. But, it’s only useful if you are an email user at your salon. If you don’t have a computer there you can’t be responsive enough for people.
By getting people to subscribe, they are giving you permission to market to them. If you do it in an ethical way with messages that offer value, you can create a means of regularly speaking to your clients about what you have to offer.