I know a lot of the salon computer systems now have this sort of thing built in, but for my money (on the ones I have seen) there is not enough flexibility.
We now have over 5000 people who have signed up online and we collect their name, email address and birthday. Each month they get an email newsletter and the system is set up to automatically send them an email on their birthday.
Segmenting The Database
As we have grown and opened new beauty salons, we have also added extra bits to the subscriber form, ie. Which is your local salon?
As the database gets bigger, this has allowed us to start sending more specific messages. For instance, I can send an email to all the people who prefer the salon in Fleet, eg. if we have a special offer that we can only deliver there.
The Late List
Like most beauty and hair salons, one of the biggest frustrations after no-shows, is last minute cancellations. Our computer system sends a reminder text message the day before and following this, we sometimes we get people cancelling.
That’s why we added extra fields to our email database recently (which in Campaign Monitor is quite easy). We simply set up a choice of three to take advantage of the spaces that late cancellations cause:
- Weekdays (daytime)
- Weekday evenings
We also went back to our existing signed up users and talked about the Late List in our newsletter so that they could update their details.
Now, when anyone new subscribes, they can also opt-in to the list of their choice. (you can see the subscriber form here).
What Is The Late List?
So, the Late List is an email we send to people who have said they sometimes have availability last minute if we have spaces in the salons.
For example, it may be that we come in on a Tuesday morning and one of the therapists has had a cancellation that – combined with breaks in her day – leads to a 90 minute gap in their day. We can send a quick email to the people who have signed up for the weekday email and let them know… giving them an offer along the way.
Sometimes these emails don’t work – it’s purely down to timing – but they often get results and for the cost (the email costs about £5 to send using Campaign Monitor) it’s definitely worth the spend. On one occasion, we took an extra £100 in a midweek day.
But, just to add some extra feedback after two months of running this campaign…
- Don’t run it the campaigns too often. There can be a temptation to send your clients the offer every time you have a gap. Resist. You don’t want to become the cheap offers salon.
- The offer is for there and then only. We did have a client receive the offer once who already had a booking that day and they wanted the offer price. The answer was no. The offer is ONLY because there is space last minute.