Communication, without question, is an essential part of your salon business. Some salon communication methods allow you to stay in touch with customers, keep them interested and engaged, ensure that your operations run smoothly, and market to new clients. Other tools help your salon team communicate internally, which in turn makes for a better client experience.
Why Salon Communication is Key
Especially helpful for salon owners and managers, good internal communication will help you run a more effective business. It’s that simple. But client communication is much more than that. Staying top of mind with your clientele can bolster their opinion of you and how they feel about your business. If they value your services and advice, they are more likely to remain loyal clients and refer your salon to friends and family. Loyal customers keep your salon’s retention rate high.
What’s more, very loyal clients take it a step further. According to Chip Bell, Author of Take Their Breath Away: How Imaginative Service Creates Devoted Customers and quoted in Forbes, “Loyal customers, they don’t just come back, they don’t simply recommend you, they insist that their friends do business with you.”
Here are some fun facts about customer loyalty:
- A 5% increase in customer retention can produce 25% more profit.
- Attracting a new customer is 6-7 times more expensive than retaining a current one.
Here are some of the best ways that your salon can use salon communication tools to help with client retention and loyalty:
The Best Salon Communication Tools for Clients
Whether it’s confirming an appointment, sharing service instructions, following up after a treatment, ongoing marketing, or reaching out to those who have not been in for a while, various tools can help you keep in touch.
Confirmations and Reminders
Confirmations are an essential part of keeping your salon running on-track. At one time, salons and spas would have their receptionists call clients to remind them the day before each appointment to ensure that they remembered their appointment. They would also rely on handwritten appointment cards after one appointment and before the next.
Today, confirmations and reminders are electronic. Sending clients an email or text to confirm their appointment increases their chances of showing up on time and helps eliminate no-shows. And when automated, text and email communications streamline the workload of the salon or spa receptionist.
How it works: After setting everything up, salon software should automatically send a text message reminder hours before and an email and text confirmation days before every client appointment.
Whether your client books online or a staff member does it at the salon or spa, the automated system takes over as soon as the appointment is made. And, if for any reason, the client cancels or changes the appointment, the system alerts them so that they can continue with their day and make the most of their time.
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As an extension to the salon’s email and text confirmations and reminders from the client experience side, text is ideal for checking in for appointments upon arrival. Curbside Check-in is an excellent way for both the client and salon staff to stay safe and streamline current operations.
How it works: Once the client arrives and awaits outside the salon or in their car, they simply text the salon. That action notifies the front desk and the service provider of the client’s arrival. When ready for the next client, either the salon or the service provider texts back and asks the client to come inside.
Once the client arrives and awaits outside the salon or in their car, they simply text the salon. That action notifies the front desk and the service provider of the client’s arrival. When ready for the next client, either the salon or the service provider texts back and asks the client to come inside.
Setting up and sending automated emails and texts is an excellent way for your clients to feel special. Imagine how they would feel if they automatically received a birthday greeting every year, or the delight a new client would experience when they received a thank-you message. And for those who are past due for their next appointment or have not been into the salon in quite a while, they may be more likely to take action with a subtle reminder.
How it works: To set up this type of automation, look for a system with automated email marketing or automatic text features. Set up the timing for each type of communication. For example, set how long since their last appointment before a current client is reminded to make their next appointment. Or the point at which a client would receive a different set of messages. You’d also want to obtain client birthdates if you don’t already have them, so the system can automatically send out birthday greetings.
Mass Email Marketing
Email marketing is a great way to keep in touch with your salon clients. It can help with loyalty and retention by simply sending relevant information about their beauty needs. Send a quick email announcing a new service, outlining your promotions, even sharing tips, trends, and at-home care advice and styling tutorials. You can also set up regular newsletters that your clients look forward to reading that outlines several topics in one place. The choice is yours.
How it works: Start with the information itself and then pick a Mass email template you want to use. Design your finished piece, and then after proofreading and sending a test, sort your client list (i.g., by service provider, products purchased, services performed, or appointment dates) or send to all of your clients. Regardless, track your results to see who opened what and when, and then adjust accordingly for your next mass email campaign.
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One of the best open rates for communications is with text. As more people become reliant on their phones, the more likely that you can reach them on a personal level.
To directly market to your salon clients, consider a series of automatic texts. Let them know about upcoming events, new services, special promotions, etc. Anything short and to the point with a link to take action or to find more information.
How it works: First, make sure you have cell members on file for your clients and that they have opted in to receive text communications. Initiate a mass text or ongoing text campaign. Next, add your message, choose your list (i.g., by the service provider, products purchased, services performed, or appointment dates), or send to all of your clients – then just deploy when ready or set a deployment schedule.
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If you have a set of instructions related to a specific service a client has booked, insert those service instructions as part of the service in your salon software. Those important directions or notes will show up on their email confirmation.
Custom Messages at Touchpoints
Other communication techniques for your clientele include adding a custom message in all of the touchpoints with your clients:
- If your clients book online, consider adding a custom message that pops up when they log in. Thank them for booking online, notify them of new services, announce an event, etc.
- On the client’s confirmation, take advantage of the opportunity to add a quick message. Consider mentioning new salon hours or policies, notification of local road construction, or simply wish them a nice day.
- The client’s email receipt is the perfect place to remind them to pre-book their appointments, shop your salon’s online store, or even to refer a friend or family member.
- There’s also an opportunity to provide a customized message when and if a client cancels an appointment. It’s always wise to include your cancellation policy and encourage the client to rebook when it’s most convenient.
The point to the options above is that you have more opportunities to communicate with salon clients. Make the most of it by using the right tools and your best salon communication skills.
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Internal Salon Communications
In addition to all of the ways you can communicate with your clientele, there are also great ways to keep your team updated. Here are some suggested salon communication channels.
These quick internal messages populate when you need to help communicate important information about a client or their services. These reminders are ideal for the appointment, check-in, and even check-out notes. Thanks to pop-up notes, your clients will be impressed that your team is always up to date with their information.
Ever wish you could send a quick message to your receptionist or one of your service providers but don’t have your phone handy? Notifications are a great way to communicate to your staff directly in your salon software account. Just look for that bell at the top of the page to view all current and past notifications for your business. Even add an image if it helps you communicate, then your staff can rely on as needed to the flow of information moving.
Now that you have salon communication tools and ideas in mind get to work to ensure both your internal and client communication is effective.
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Photos courtesy JeShoots on Pexels plus Thom Holmes and You X Ventures for Unsplash.