Retention Marketing

We all want new clients and we spend a lot of time and effort advertising to attract new clients to our salons. However we also need to apply just as much effort into keeping existing clients and building upon customer loyalty.

Over the course of a year we will lose more clients then we retain, this balance needs to be addressed. Half the battle is attracting a new client into your salon, the other half is to keep them and encourage rebook appointments.

Whether they are a new client or an existing client they need to feel special and that they are getting value for money from you, that you will go the extra mile for them, you can provide that little bit extra and you offer a more reliable then the service they can get from the next salon. You need to show them they can depend upon you.

Sometimes it can be the smallest of gestures that can make the biggest of differences in making your client feel valued, which will make them want to return to see you.

So what strategies can you put to good use in your salon?

You need to assist your client to make an emotional attachment and commitment to you and your salon. You need to make your efforts relevant and personalised for each client.

These are a few easy tips that are easy to action upon:

The personal touch: A client you haven’t seen for a while why not give them a call? Ask them how they are and tell them you have missed them. This will help make the client feel valued and they you care about them. A valued client is more likely to rebook. This also shows you are aware of your clients and have the time to talk and that you appreciate their custom.

VIP program: Running a VIP program for your regular clients will help make your client feel they are receiving special treatment. A VIP program can include discounts, birthday gifts or discounts, invites to VIP events including exclusive treatment and product launches or Christmas/summer party events.

Reviews: Invite your clients to write a review for your website. Clients love being asked to share their opinion. Your reputation is also built upon reviews and word of mouth testimonials, so why not ask your clients to write one for you.

Referrals: Offer your client rewards for any referrals they make. Remember to reward your client and the new client they have referred to you. This can take the form of a complimentary treatment, discount or gift.

Social media: If your client follows you on social media, make sure you follow them back and engage with their content. Not just liking their post, but, actually commenting too, this only takes a few seconds but it will go a long way in showing that you genuinely care about and are interested in your clients. This also reminds your clients who you are and puts your salon name and brand in front of them. Your clients are then more likely to engage with your content and see your posts too.

Greetings cards: Sending greetings cards to your clients in the form of birthday, anniversary, Christmas cards goes a long way. If you are able to hand write and put a personal message this will show your client they are valued and you care enough to remember them. Especially if you have not seen them for a while.

Thank you cards: Each year either on your clients birthday or at Christmas write a thank you card, thank them for their custom. You can also include a discount or complimentary treatment with their next treatment.

Be reliable: As much as possible run to time with appointments (I realise running late it sometimes unavoidable). Understand your clients requirements. If a client is coming for an express lunch time treatment, then they will not want to be delayed getting back to work and you will need to stick to the treatment time.

Value for money: If your client has booked an hour massage, make sure they get their hour treatment. Any less and they will feel short changed and won’t have value for money. By the other token, if you extend the treatment, because you have more time one day, this will be expected every time.

Complaints: We all shy away from complaints, however try to use these to your advantage. Take on board what your client was unhappy about and use this information to improve your service in the future. Invite the client back for a complimentary treatment so she can how you have improved.

Equally important is that you need to be consistent with the quality of your service and the products you use to build on your brand strength, value for money and client satisfaction.

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