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The BEST Marketing for a Beauty Salon

This is not Steve

I recently spoke with Steve (not pictured here), owner of a beauty salon in northern Wisconsin about local marketing.

He told me that he recently hired some talented stylists, and needed to drum up business for them.

He looked through the Yellow Pages and saw over 25 pages of dental offices.  Since most dental offices are loaded with women, he prepared menus of his salon services and has his stylists go visit the offices.

dental staffTypical Dental Office Staff

The stylists are trained to introduce themselves, drop off some menus, and invite the women to come to the salon.

They also visit other professional offices such as lawyers and doctors.

“It’s the best advertising we could do.  Every day they go out, they will get at least one new client.

I also have them circle back to the dental offices periodically and introduce themselves and deliver more materials with a business card.”

I’m not surprised that this is highly effective.  Nothing beats the personal visit by a friendly face who is enthusiastic about her profession.  It’s the most effective way to proactively build your business.

But there’s a hidden benefit as well . . .

“When a stylist is out in the community making friends, she’s not in the salon staring at an empty computer screen with no appointments.  It keeps their attitudes fresh and positive.”

I applaud Steve and his team for stepping up the marketing efforts.  I am certain that before long, the salon will be so busy that the stylists don’t have the time to go out.

So what are Steve’s costs?

Assuming that the stylists are going out when there are no clients on the schedule, the true cost is only that of printing materials.

Should this salon owner invest in a Yellow Pages ad?

Well, it depends.

If the directory is highly concentrated on the markets that the salon wants to serve, a Yellow Pages ad can be highly effective.

Let’s do the math . . .

An eighth page display ad in the Kimberly HomePages costs $365 per year ($1 per day).  The HomePages are mailed to 4,900 women in Kimberly.

The basic woman’s cut starts at $30, perms go for $30-$90.  Assuming that the stylist can sell some add-ons, products, or an occasional perm, there is around $30 profit on a customer visit.

If that customer comes back four times per year, the salon owner needs to generate 3 new customers per year from his ad.

Is this reasonable?

Well, let’s look at a similar example.

salon yellow pages resultsA salon in Highland, Indiana generated 42 calls in 33 weeks (66 calls per year).  I don’t consider this to be a particularly large number.

But if each salon customer is worth $120 per year, the salon would need to convert only 1 customer from every 22 calls.

Locally targeted Yellow Pages advertising is a safety net for all of Steve’s outreach marketing.  A simple, thoughtful ad will convert some of the ladies his stylists approached into paying customers.

The risk of missing out seems to me to be greater then the risk of wasting money on advertising that doesn’t work.

That’s the beauty of hyper-local directories.

The cost-benefit return on investment is pretty compelling.

  1. JamesDecember 8,09

    Here’s how to increase response…add this line…to the Yellow Pages advert:

    “Please call for our ‘Monthly Manager Specials’

  2. ChasDecember 15,09

    AIDA says,
    Attention – ” I GOT a FREAKING GREAT Haircut at GHD!”
    Interest – ” This salon does hair like nobody else does.”
    Desire – ” My boyfriend thought I looked really HOT! ”
    Action – ” Start your day with a great look before another day of opportunities is gone. Call Jean at 555-1212″

    So YA….there’s room for improvement in those numbers. The phone number is clear, easy to read black on white. The rest of the ad can go in the trash.

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