How are Salons maximising profits in a post-COVID world?

One of the biggest challenges facing Hair & Beauty Salons in a post-COVID society is the cavernous disconnect between staff and customers. Gone are the days of casual chatter as we welcome gloves, masks and visors to our new normal. Upselling that premium shampoo may have been a given in 2019, but in 2020 it’s a difficult proposition. With lengthy closures, reduced consumer spending on luxuries and fewer customers venturing out, it’s more important than ever for Salons to capitalise on every single client who comes through the doors.

So what are the most successful businesses doing to remain relevant and improve their direct-to-consumer marketing? It may come as no surprise to the savvy amongst you that digital signage has become the go-to solution for in-salon marketing. Ultra-high brightness digital window displays serve to bring passing foot traffic into the salon while unobtrusive styling unit displays remind clients of additional offers, promotions and services while they’re in the chair. POS screens at reception remind visitors to pick up that one essential product on their way out as well as upselling discounted items available during the visit. It’s this clever customer journey that takes retail sales from an afterthought to a major part of the business. A recent survey by POPAI, the Point of Purchase Advertising Institute found that salon customers are 10 times more likely to notice digital displays than static posters or flyers. Moreover, 40% of customers responded better to visual displays and salon owners saw a 33% increase in product upsells after installing digital signage. Businesses using displays in their windows saw a 33% increase in traffic through the door, while overall sales revenue increased on average by 24%. Compelling figures indeed!

In an interview in the Autumn issue of Salon Focus Magazine, House of Hair Hostess owner Fay Smith talked about her decision to take the leap into digital advertising; “I wanted to sell additional products more effectively, as well as incentivise our clients to engage more with our social media pages and extend our marketing reach. It’s difficult for staff in the salon to sell additional products and services because they’re not trained salespeople, but my thinking was, if we could focus the customer on the screens advertising our range of additional services, then that would guide conversations and enable the stylist to take orders from clients who respond. The results have been amazing so far – Since July 14th, I’ve generated over £2,000 of additional income from the screen advertisements. If you’re a salon owner who is afraid of losing your business I would recommend getting some screens installed. They will do so much of the work for you in terms of growing your retail sales and social media reach”.

Of course, it’s not just the technology that creates an impact – Content is key! No matter how good the visual display, if the content doesn’t resonate with your clients, you simply won’t see the desired effect. This is where a managed content and design service, with regular marketing support and campaign management, can be an enormous boon to small businesses. By engaging the knowledge, experience and skills offered by a digital marketing agency, not only will you ensure that you have the right screens in the correct positions, but also the perfect content to engage with your customers. This essential combination can lead to incredible results for those who embrace it.

Speaking of the impact digital signage has had on his business in September’s Bumble and bumble newsletter, Gerri Keane of Dangerfield & Keane said “After lockdown, we had major personnel changes within the salon and we were without our self-employed therapist so we made the decision to directly employ a Principal Therapist. The screens attract clients, advertise our hours, services and products, whilst internal screens advertise offers, promotions, team members, upcoming events etc. Content is easily updated and we receive as much support as we need to make our campaigns work. We can leave them on 24/7 so they even work for us when we are closed, being on a main road with passing traffic. With the installation of the screens, our beauty turnover went from £0 to £1,500 in four weeks! Added to that is the hair retail, hair service uptake and general information and brand awareness we are getting ‘out there’ on the pavement, as well as the captive audience ‘in the chair’ during hair services.”

As with any new technology, the idea can be intimidating at first. However, the results speak for themselves and for the progressive salon owner, the best days are still ahead!