Part of your education as an esthetician is learning how to market your business. It’s not enough to be good at what you do – your unique skincare art – you need to be a savvy business owner. Marketing strategies are a critical component of the equation (even if you work for someone else, you're always marketing yourself). No marketing = no leads = no clients = no business – well, you get the idea. Are you using any or all of these in your business?
1. Local Service Marketing
Since most of your business is location based (clients are looking for services in their local area), geo-targeted ads use location data to help you reach out to your niche client. An example would be a Facebook ad which can use geo-targeting, so your ad shows up in a feed of people in your area. It can also be tailored to other demographics, like age, lifestyle, etc.
2. Loyalty Programs
This is a no brainer for business owners. Rewarding your clients with a discount, free service or product encourages them to keep coming back. Tiered programs or memberships are another option, the idea being that the more money they spend, the bigger the reward level. Discounts on services or products on the client’s birthday or early access to spa sales helps keep clients motivated.
Good old-fashioned word of mouth referrals never goes out of style and it’s one of the easiest marketing strategies to implement. It’s a win win – your current clients get a little incentive to make them feel special while helping you get new clients. Offer your client a discount, free service or add-on to a service, product, or special promotion if they refer you to a friend, colleague or family member and that person books a service. You can tie in referrals to your loyalty program too!
4. Build Your Social & Online Presence
We’ve said a lot about this but it bears repeating – in the digital world, you need a strong, (and unique – think Brand ME) brand presence on social media and your website. (You DO have a website, don’t you? 😉). Grow your following by posting consistently – always with engaging, useful content. Before and after's (with permission of course) are a must for your portfolio on your website and FB/IG pages. If your clients post anything about your business or their treatments, make sure they tag you. And while we’re on the subject of tags, using relevant hashtags can boost your social presence especially when they are related to your particular niche or specialty area. We’ve discussed creating educational and informative content for your blog and email marketing – be a content queen. You are the expert, so let that light shine.
5. Never Leave Home Without Them
Mobile contact sharing and social media following have their place but handing out a professional looking business card is still an important (and fairly inexpensive) marketing tool. A good business card showcases your brand and gives the prospect a visual they can connect with in 3D.
Tip: Invest in a business card holder or small makeup bag so your cards don’t get creased, crinkled, bent, or covered in “purse crumbs” from the bottom of your bag or case.
6. Showcase Brand YOU
Everything about your business should show your client in an instant who you are. Your colors (marketing materials, treatment menu, salon décor, website), fonts, images should all help build your brand. It’s the most important component of your overall marketing strategy. For example:
Your treatment room (or spa). First impressions are lasting – so what do you want your client’s experience to be? Are you bold and vibrant? Serene and peaceful? Down to earth and organic? Everything about your space should reflect brand you.
The same is true for your social media platforms. What’s the overall tone and vibe? How you come across helps your potential clients connect with you. Business cards, email blasts, flyers, and brochures – everything should have a consistent look and feel that shows off your visual branding.
7. Email Marketing
See last week’s blog post! Email marketing is beneficial to your business on so many levels. It connects you to your clients in a deeper and more meaningful way than social media. It keeps them informed (promotions, sales, new services, hours, staff, etc.) and solidifies your expertise as the professional in their minds.
Keep your emails intentional and use them to build brand awareness and to share and educate. Email in its best form adds value and builds the KNOW-LIKE-TRUST factor that is so important to your client relationships.