JAIME: Welcome to Outgrowth: A Slice of Pro Beauty with your hosts Jaime Schrabeck.
ASHLEY: And Ashley Gregory. The uncertainty of the last eight months has cast doubt on future revenue patterns. Some of us are facing uncharted territory having to market our businesses for the first time in a long time.
JAIME: We address the creative ways beauty pros can stay front of mind as we move into the holiday season and beyond. Let’s grow together.
JAIME: With many salons reporting a slow down of client traffic, what actions can we take today to ensure our survival in 2021?
ASHLEY: That’s a great question, and I think it’s something that definitely deserves a little bit of conversation. Everything is upside down.
JAIME: We need to anticipate this happening because we know typically what would happen throughout the course of the year if you do have a slowdown of business after the holiday season. And there’s nothing that I can think of other than perhaps the availability of a vaccine that might increase traffic at that particular time, but I’m not expecting that to happen.
ASHLEY: Nor am I, and salon overheads have never been higher. There may be back rent that needs to be paid or other bills piling up that we wouldn’t necessarily be facing down in January and February. But if we’re counting on a busy, bustling, record-breaking holiday season, I think it would be smart to be proactive, to have a plan for what exactly you’re going to do if your salon is slow at the start of 2021,
JAIME: One of the things that I’m considering because I have not planned for any appointments beyond the end of the year where I normally would have done that already with standing appointments is to reconsider the number of hours that I schedule myself and my employee.
ASHLEY: I think that’s smart, whatever your controllables are. It just makes sense to reassess. What do you have to do? What are the minimums that you can do or spend in order to continue to maintain the revenue levels that you’re generating now? Especially for you having just again reopened in California versus somebody like me that has all four seasons, and being a nail technician in the Chicago area, and in the Midwest in general, January and February is really tough because nobody’s getting pedicures. Their feet are safely tucked into boots for six plus months. And it seems like after the holidays, there’s a little bit of buyer’s remorse, and a little bit of spenders regret, and some of the luxuries or nonessential services like a beauty service just aren’t happening. So what can we do if we’re a beauty professional that had a full book previously, before COVID, and now is trying to fill empty slots? It’s muscles we haven’t flexed in a while.
JAIME: One of the activities that I’ve been taking part in that I wouldn’t normally have to do would be to reach out to clients who would normally have a standing appointment. I wouldn’t need to make these phone calls. We would have already established this schedule that would have run throughout the entire calendar year and we would have already planned for next year.
So now I find myself picking up the phone and reminding clients that, yes, in fact, we are open again. And some of them actually missed the email that I originally sent when we did get the permission to reopen. So it’s not that they saw it and thought, I don’t want to come back. It’s just that they needed that nudge, or actually some of them had actually changed their email addresses over the last couple of months and I wouldn’t have known that otherwise. So it’s been an exercise in just following up with clients that I would anticipate would want to be on the schedule and scheduling them through the end of the year. And then for next year, I’m thinking that I need to anticipate not only maybe some dropoff, because I imagine some of those clients are going to be reevaluating their priorities, but I want to anticipate being able to capture some clients who I’ve not seen previously, who may have lost their particular service provider.
ASHLEY: Yeah, that makes a ton of sense because there’s going to be sadly attrition through this process where salons are closing. And so there’s a bit of a displaced client population that we have to be smart about trying to capture.
JAIME: So I may be replacing some clients who weren’t able to come back, or who chose not to come back, or not to come back yet. So I am seeking out new clients who would be coming in understanding what my salon represents, and the precautions that we’ve taken and will continue to take, particularly when they’re required to keep them safe until we’re able to overcome this pandemic.
ASHLEY: Definitely. Well, something that you explained really well in your classes is how to increase revenue year over year and you bring up the fact that there aren’t more hours in the day. So one of three things needs to happen. Either you see more clients, meaning more in a day. So your service protocols may change to be faster, or you may eliminate some lengthier services from your menu, or you see more clients that you’re filling holes in your schedule. Or you sell each client more, meaning you upgrade their service experience, whether it’s an add on, a raised price, or retail, or some other supplemental way of doing that. Or you diversify your offerings and bring something new into your salon wherein you attract a new audience or people who wouldn’t have necessarily been your client in the first place, like adding spray tanning, or lash extensions, or something like that if it’s not something that was normally in your purview.
JAIME: And that third thing is the thing I’m least likely to do because I’ve actually eliminated services over the years. And I don’t have the energy to add anything right now. And there’s really nothing that I can think of that would appeal to the type of client that finds my salon useful and worthwhile. So I don’t think I’m going to be jumping on any trends or trying to be something I’m not. So for all those clients out there who may anticipate at some point I would pick up nail art, that’s not happening.
ASHLEY: Well, and I think diversifying offerings is probably one of the more labor intensive options of those three, just because you have to be really creative and kind of guess what your clients or people that aren’t even yet your clients would want from you. Like what level of convenience are you adding if you’re bringing in a new type of beauty service? This could make sense. If you are maybe bringing on a new stylist or a new service provider that did have to close their space and so they’re going to bring their clients with them. The attrition that we mentioned, but it seems like that kind of narrows it down to either having more clients or selling your current clients more. And this is the traditional framework of increasing revenue year over year, or increasing revenue to meet specific benchmarks, but we’re not in normal times, right? So this may just be doing these behaviors and focusing on these strategies just to keep your head above water. So when it becomes life or death, like it is now, both literally and figuratively, it can start to get a little desperate. And I think more risk is tolerated, as well as maybe some snap judgements and decisions that we make pretty hastily. So let’s talk about what creative ways there are to differentiate yourself in your business. And again, flex those marketing muscles, especially if you haven’t had to do that in a long time.
JAIME: We’ve talked previously about this being an opportunity to rebrand yourself and to reflect on your positioning within your local community and those things that you find most enjoyable to offer to your clients. That’s why I’m averse to the idea of diversifying my offerings just for my particular situation, because it’s not something I, I would have done it already if I thought it was worthwhile. And right now the thought of investing in more equipment, or supplies, or products, or going above and beyond what I’m doing now in terms of the breadth of services I’m offering doesn’t appeal to me as much as reinforcing what it is that we already do really well, that once people find us, they wonder why they hadn’t thought of it before. And I think that’s where if we can demonstrate how we’re handling the pandemic, and how we’re keeping clients safe, and creating this experience, despite all of that, that may be my best bet for replacing clients and solidifying that foundation of clients who I would hope eventually would schedule standing appointments once we establish that the timing of the services is going to be the same.
ASHLEY: Definitely. I think a demonstration of safety and showing that you go above and beyond the recommendations and guidelines, it’s sort of the bare minimum at this point. It’s something that everyone is expecting. And the point of marketing in general is to create brand awareness, to reach people who have not heard of your salon before, but secondly, it’s about informing the client experience. So even us as beauty professionals, we ask ourselves these questions. Well, if I go and get my hair done at this other stylist’s place, what is my experience going to be like? What will my results be like? What is the environment like? How will I be treated? What do other clients of the salon have to say? And so knowing that those are the usual, typical questions on the minds of potential clients, it’s our job through marketing to answer them before they even ask. So if you were to make a video, or our listener were to make a video, and share it widely through social media, through boosted posts, Facebook ads, things like that, you’re going to capture an entire audience that may not have ever heard of you, but they’re going to have a positive experience and brand reinforcement all at once by watching this video and understanding that you are taking their safety seriously.
JAIME: Speaking of that, how useful do you think testimonials are?
ASHLEY: I find testimonials to be extremely useful when they’re specific. So we’ve all seen and sniffed out fake reviews, the ones that were clearly left by family and friends, five star. That’s like leaving eBay feedback, right? Five-star seller, A+++, would do business with again. The more specific and detailed I think a testimonial gets, to me, the more weight it carries. What do you think about them?
JAIME: Well, your description of the video is something that you could produce and it could just be you giving a tour of your salon. It could be something very focused, and not involve any other individuals, or any clients or staff or anything really, but just you. And the idea of testimonials, someone else validating you, appeals to me. But at the same time, I think you make an excellent point because if it’s just, oh, it’s a great experience. It’s a clean salon. That doesn’t do enough for people. I don’t think it provides enough information or shows how you’re able to create results. So the ideas of testimonials before and afters, there’s lots of different things that people will do in normal times to show things, but I’m not sure if any of those have the same weight given the stakes that we’re currently experiencing.
ASHLEY: I love a good before and after photo. I think everybody in our industry does. It’s a fun thing to admire, admire the artistry and the result. But that doesn’t necessarily communicate the new reality we’re living in. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with a before and after, as long as it’s supplemented with something that speaks to and acknowledges the fact that we’re going through a pandemic and there are new obstacles to navigate, new regulations to remember. You have to remember that the general public is also being bombarded with this messaging, whether it comes from your city or county health department, from the state and federal governments. The discussion about wearing masks, is it a mandate? Is it a law? Does it violate my rights? That’s happening every day. So in this instance, our customer is a little bit more informed than they would be generally. So if you’re answering again, those questions before they even ask them, just as the baseline, then you’re doing what you need to do to kind of allay some of those frequently asked questions. Video is difficult for a lot of us. We don’t have the time or necessarily the technical knowledge of how to become cinematographers, but video is really the easiest way to communicate how clean your salon is, how seriously you take these guidelines, because video doesn’t lie. It is very difficult to retouch a video the way you could a photo. Yes, there’s filters and things like that, but a brush with hair in it, a dusty, dirty corner, those are things that are going to show on video. So it really helps you also see your business through your client’s eyes.
JAIME: And I have a video to make, I created a video, but I did it. I cheated, because I did it through photographs because I wanted to put something together that I could use to advocate for having nail salons reopen inside by actually explaining what was happening in each photograph. And I think the words were as important as the photographs themselves, because the photograph, if you didn’t understand how I operate my business, you wouldn’t even know what you were looking at necessarily. So I did that, but I didn’t even share that widely and it’s not available yet on my website. And part of me thinks it might become obsolete soon,
JAIME: And it could be. And I, and I will say that in terms of before and afters and videos, if we’re not there to learn the process, like if we’re not watching the video to see what did that person do to achieve that result as we would, as a fellow professional, we may want to see what techniques were being used and what products, and it’s strictly a before and after. It may just be a function of my Facebook feed, but I’m seeing a lot of that around hair color. A ton, and you see these very dramatic before and afters based on lots of outgrowth, and gray hair, or whatever, maybe the case. So that’s a very extreme example of what that person’s capable of, but normally we’re just maintaining those clients on a regular basis. I don’t have clients that are coming in with such drastic circumstances because I’m doing manicures and pedicures.
ASHLEY: Well, and videos like that are just meant to get your attention. It’s the flashing light outside of the entrance of the carwash. It’s the thing to draw your eye, and then the signage, and the fact that there’s other cars driving into it, help you understand what it is and what it does. The same thing works with social media and video especially. Right now, video is king. There is no other type of content that is going to get you the brand awareness, the reach, the recognition, the expert profile, the way video will. It’s, I know there’s a lot of resistant people out there. Believe me, I understand. I don’t like having to put on a full face of makeup to just shoot a quick Instagram story. However, this is the world we now live in. Every single way you can claw, and scratch, and scrape any type of advantage or point of differentiation from your competition is going to mean everything to your business. So I think the sooner we all get on the video train, the better. It’s intimidating. It’s going to be tough. People are going to be bad at it in the beginning, but that is okay. There are tools that are coming out every single day that are making this easier, especially for businesses that are busy. You could be busy now, but you might not be busy in December, so it’s really good to have a stable of content just waiting on your phone or on your computer for that moment when you’re like, ooh, I don’t have anybody booked today. I’m not going to be able to create any content. I need to put something out there.
JAIME: Tell me how we could use some of these newer formats, like Instagram Reels and TikTok.
ASHLEY: When Instagram Reels first came out, it, everybody sort of laughed at it. They’re like, oh, this is Instagram’s version of TikTok. Haha. But Reels has started to pull even with TikTok because of all of the conversation about TikTok data mining, going to be banned unless it’s purchased, et cetera. So Reels is being treated very favorably by the Instagram algorithm. Instagram of course, is a publicly traded division of Facebook. And so every time they add a new feature, the early adopters get rewarded with more and more exposure if they use that feature. Think about all the different features in Instagram. You have IGTV, which is Instagram’s attempt at YouTube. You have Instagram stories, which is Instagram’s attempt at Snapchat, and now you have Instagram Reels. So if you create a reel, the algorithm is going to push that out to more people than normal. It’s going to feature it on the explore page, assuming the content is relevant. On my coaching account, I created a couple different reels, just doing some funny pointing things at different words about ways you can kind of punch up your Instagram bio and the reach and exposure I got on that was stunning. If it’s not something that you’ve used before, it is very easy to do. You don’t have to download any new specific software for it. You shoot it right in the app and it allows you to take a 15 second video of whatever it is you’re trying to get across. So when you’re using video, remember this phrase, show don’t tell. So if you have the urge to type a big, long paragraph of text to explain what’s happening in the video, you’re not showing it well enough. So show us in the video. It’s a video for crying out loud. Show us. I know there’s a lot of resistance as well to this thinking that, oh, TikTok’s only for the teens and Gen Z is not going to spend any money with me. This could not be further from the truth. The demographics on both of these applications are changing every day. You may be asking, what could I possibly show that would be that interesting on TikTok and I would challenge you by saying there is a rug company that just shows the cleaning of area rugs, just on a flat cement floor. They hose it down. They shampoo it. They squeegee it off. It is so satisfying to watch. I can’t explain it. It just, it’s very calming. It’s oddly satisfying. This rug cleaning company has over a million followers on TikTok. Now how that translates to sales remains to be seen. I’m actually going to reach out to them and interview them about their experience with TikTok and how it has affected their business. But if they can make rug cleaning interesting, I think our job is way easier to make engaging and worthwhile to watch.
JAIME: It doesn’t get any more mundane than that, if that is their business is to clean rugs and they’re showing exactly that. I’ve yet to see that, but I will have to look it up. So I’m thinking, because the length of the video doesn’t have to be very long, you could take a portion of your service that you take for granted, whether it’s doing the massage, or polishing a nail, or whatever, depending on your specialty, that happens to be mine, and actually create content based on something that you find either tedious or boring, but you don’t know what your audience will think. It’s worth a try.
ASHLEY: It’s absolutely worth a try. And my little snippet of advice on getting into this quick video medium is show me an after and before, instead of the other way around. Start with the end result. Give me a little glimpse of it, and then say here’s how we got here, and show the process. Because with shorter video formats, attention spans are shorter. So if you grab me with a beautiful result and then show me the steps you took to get there, I’m going to watch the whole video. Let’s just say that. Instead of starting with, unless the before is shocking, it’s like a shocking transformation. But for most of us who are doing, we’re not doing fantasy colors. We’re not doing six and a half hour long nail art sessions. Whatever it is that you do. I think if you get stumped for content ideas, just think about what do your clients always ask you. What’s the number one question you’re asked? Maybe it’s, do I really need to buy salon professional shampoo and conditioner? Or how do I stop getting so many hang nails? Whatever that number one question is, make a video about that because odds are if your clients are asking that question, everyone has that question. And who knows, you may even just go viral.
JAIME: Do we get bonus points if we feature products that we’re going to retail?
ASHLEY: Absolutely. Why not? I mean, what do you have to lose, honestly?
JAIME: In my clientele, I’m finding more and more of them are polishing their own nails and they haven’t done that in a really long time. So that does give me some ideas for content that I wouldn’t normally have thought to record.
ASHLEY: I love that idea, but if video’s not your thing, I would say there is another way to supplement that. I don’t think that you should write it off completely. And again, remember the first couple of times, it’s going to be awkward. It’s going to be like riding a bike. You’re going to fall off a couple of times. But if you aren’t sold on video or you want to supplement it with something maybe a little bit more normal, I would start with an email program. Email’s definitely something, as you know, I love to talk about because yes, there’s a little bit of email happening in the industry, but it’s often underutilized or utilized incorrectly. And so I think an email program taking the time now to set it up and stick to it, you’re going to see a huge return on your investment.
JAIME: All along we should have always been collecting that basic information from our clients: the first name, last name, email address, and a contact number if they’re actually scheduling appointments, but to be able to capture email addresses even from visitors to the website, what’s your best suggestion for doing that?
ASHLEY: Well, there’s a few different ways. I think we’re all pretty familiar with the email popup, triggered by whatever it may be, whether it’s someone is on the site for more than 10 seconds, or they scroll down at least 30% of your home page, or a popup that comes up on exit intent. You know, when the mouse goes up to the top corner to close the tab, your popup comes up with some type of offer. But I also think if you create that culture within your salon space and ask for client emails, whether it’s through your online booking software or when you see your client face to face, just tell them you need to update their client profile. We need your current email address. We want to add you to our VIP list, whatever that looks like. Email is something that everyone is used to giving and they understand that giving an email address means that they’re going to receive marketing and promotional material. But if you sweeten the deal by giving them a free glossing treatment, or a travel size retail item2,or whatever that might be, they’re going to very easily give that back to you. One of the main tenets of marketing is that it costs what 10 times more to find a new client than it does to maintain a relationship with a current client. So through email, you’re going to find that clients are going to visit you more often. They’re going to stick to their maintenance schedule with email reminders, and they’re much more likely to refer people to you because you’ve created that relationship. Email is such a powerful tool.
JAIME: And what advice would you give to those of us who already have an email list built, but we might be struggling to find content that we think would be relevant, especially if we’ve known these clients for many, many years, like, why is it now that you’re just now communicating on a weekly basis?
ASHLEY: Yeah, that can be a tough transition I think. When I talk to students and clients about email and how often they’re sending them, I find that the average is once a month at the most often, like here’s our September salon newsletter, right? Or I emailed you once every two weeks, and then I stopped for nine months, and then now I’m back emailing you once every two weeks. Consistency with email is key. So don’t let yourself drop off. Schedule time to create your emails and make them happen. What’s amazing about a lot of these client relationship management tools like MailChimp or Constant Contact is that you can create your emails and then schedule them for the future. So it can be pretty hands off, but if you are doing something like appointment reminders, salon newsletters, things like that, you’ve already created that relationship. As long as you’re adding value in whatever you’re sending them, they’re not going to complain. There was a study done and something like 90% of people with an email account prefer to hear from businesses they patronize once a week or more often and here’s why. Again, like I said before, we’re all used to online shopping. And when the email popup comes up and says, give us your email for 15% off your first purchase, we know we’re making a trade. The trade off is I’m going to get marketing and promotional material from you in my email inbox, and I get this one time discount. Clients would much rather get that information in their email inbox where they have a little bit of control versus seeing it on their Facebook or Instagram feed because that they don’t have control over. They’re just served whatever the algorithm thinks they want to see. So email’s really great because the client can open the email whenever they want to. It’s not something that’s just going to show up in their face and maybe turn them off.
JAIME: The only time I find myself unsubscribing from emails, and I do get a lot of them, when it’s from a company that I don’t remember ever having given my email address to, it’s obviously been sold by some other party. That I will unsubscribe from because I will rarely find it useful. I will rarely see the subject line and think, oh yeah, that’s something I need to follow up on. Or when I know these companies are doing it on this regular schedule, and I just see these emails piling up, and I realize I’m not, I don’t care enough to even open them, so what are the chances that I’m going to find this useful in the future? I’m just going to unsubscribe.
ASHLEY: Yeah, again, it goes back to the adding value. As long as you’re giving them something that’s worthy of a click and a read, whether it’s information, teaching something, offering something new, introducing a new staff member, whatever that looks like, offering them a birthday deal, whatever that is, it’s sort of like you’re training your client to open your emails because you’re using an interesting subject line, which is a topic I could talk about for hours, But if you are giving them something of value, making them feel seen, cultivating that relationship, they’re not going to open every email you send, understandable. But as long as there’s some little morsel or nugget of goodness in that email, they’re going to maybe not seek them out, but they’re not going to delete them without reading them.
JAIME: The emails I would normally send them because I do have a confirmation system that’s email-based would be about 48 hours before their appointment time so they know to expect this email to come. But in building out an email program, do you think it’d be worthwhile to vary the content so you’re not just sending out a series of emails where every one of them is a coupon,or where everyone of them is promoting a particular product? Is the variety something that you feel would be helpful in creating a sense of, you know, I need to open that up to really see what’s in there on the part of the client?
ASHLEY: Definitely. It’s almost like when your college professor hides something silly at the end of the syllabus just to make sure you’ve read it. That’s something that I think can be really fun like once a month if you just sort of bury something in the email, like call the salon and say, farfegnugen, or whatever, and we’ll give you something, or you’re going to be our customer of the month, or whatever. Definitely varying the content for sure because if all they’re used to seeing from you are automated emails that are ugly. They’re just text. There’s nothing really interesting going on. It’s all about business information, confirming your appointment. It’s at this and this time at this place, we’ll see you then. Plus varying your content across all of your email subscribers and clients, but also segmenting your list into regulars, people you see every six weeks, or two weeks, or week, or whatever it might be versus people you haven’t seen in 18 months. You wouldn’t send those people the same message, right?
ASHLEY: Because it’s not relevant to one of those groups. So segmenting your email list and then varying the content is going to mean that you’re not going to be sending the same kind of droning on content to your list who’s like, why am I on this list? I hate this.
JAIME: Well, and that makes perfect sense to me because you don’t have the same relationship with clients across those segments and you’d want to be able to measure the performance of those emails.
ASHLEY: Absolutely. How many people opened it? How many people clicked? How many people unsubscribed? It’s kind of like insights on social media. It tells you a little bit about if you’re on the right track or if you need to switch it up.
JAIME: Well, I love that idea. And I know one of the other ideas that you wanted to discuss was hosting a live virtual event.
JAIME: So tell me what we should do in that respect.
ASHLEY: So it’s all about reaching a new audience. If you’re gonna give somebody something for free, they’re much more likely to take notice versus asking someone to pay you for a class when you’re an unknown entity to them. But if it’s something simple, like holding a free Zoom class about the basics of nail care or how to recreate a specific celebrity hairstyle, that’s going to get them in the door. It’s kind of like the lead magnet. It’s like, ooh, what’s that shiny blinking light outside of the carwash that I can get someone’s attention with and then once I have that attention, share the features and benefits of my business to convert them into a client. So sales funnels, and GaryVee, and all of that stuff. That information is out there, but just putting it in really simple terms, what’s going to captivate someone’s interest. And then while you have that attention, you can explain why your salon, or your suite, or your business is a great destination, really kind of ups your expert perception.
JAIME: And the idea of being an expert, you’re an expert as a beauty professional. So I’m thinking about some people thinking, well, I could just comment on anything or I could share favorite slow cooker recipe. I think we still need to focus on ourselves as beauty professionals and keep the content relevant to that as opposed to perhaps trying to branch off and be some sort of lifestyle brand, but that’s just me.
ASHLEY: Yeah, I agree. I think there’s room for that for some people if you have a really large following and you want to start talking about something else, but just know that your core audience was built based on the services you offer and what you’re an expert in. There are so many great creative ways that you can speak to a new audience. You can capture a new demographic, whether it’s getting on a new social media platform or trying to do more things IRL, I guess like holding an event where you register people to vote in a safe, socially distanced way in and around your salon. If you really want more foot traffic, you could apply to have an Amazon locker put in your salon. I mean, that’s an extreme, but if you want to connect more with your community and reach people who would maybe not have ever been your client in the first place, it’s a great way to get more foot traffic, more attention, and create relationships with people.
JAIME: I actually think that within my community, Ashley, there are dozens, if not hundreds, of potential clients who are very similar to my existing clients in terms of their wants, and their needs, and their priorities, and through this pandemic experience, they may realize that where they have been going for years didn’t quite match that and they’re ready for a change. So I’m hoping to capture that group of people which doesn’t require much change on my part other than then letting them know that I exist and that we are in a position where we are able to accept a certain number of new clients.
ASHLEY: I know you’ve been booked solid for such a long time that your clients may not be talking about you because they’re having a hard time getting an appointment. And they think, oh, she doesn’t need anybody else. You know, so even just mentioning it during your service and saying, we actually are starting to take new clients. If there’s anybody that you think would love to hear about us, we’d love your referral or whatever. Sometimes it’s just about planting the seed and hoping that it sprouts into something a little better. I think at this point we can’t leave any stone unturned, and I am not above strapping a sandwich board to myself, and walking around the downtown of my city, like it’s dog eat dog out there. It’s kind of kill or be killed, which is scary to say, but you have to exhaust every possible option and you’re going to find something that’s going to catch on and become your tried and true. If you’re really lost about what you can try, send a survey to your current clients. Just ask them. What would make you come more often? What would make you refer us or review us? What could we do to better support you throughout COVID? I mean, maybe it’s a five minute longer head massage. I would make a video about that. If I saw a salon that said, hey, stuff’s crazy. We’re all going through it. We are for the month of November offering 10 minute head massages at the shampoo bowl for every service, I would be standing outside of that salon with my nose pressed on the glass waiting for it to open because it might be something you’re already doing, but if you haven’t talked about it, people don’t, they just don’t know about it. So you can’t assume that because you put it on Instagram once that everybody in the world saw it, and knows about it, and thinks about it. It’s a great way to stay front of mind and just talk about what you’re doing. Understand your audience’s pain points and then create something that speaks directly to that.
JAIME: I have a beautifully printed sandwich board that I have not used in almost 10 years. And I’m thinking that that probably belongs on the sidewalk outside of my salon, as opposed to my services being offered on the sidewalk outside of my salon. So the only thing I would do around that would be encouraging anyone who saw that not to try to come in because that’s not an option right now, but perhaps putting some sort of collateral that they could take away with them and visit the website. Make the phone call. I’d rather have them visit the website, then make the phone call, but you get my point so that they don’t think that this is an invitation to walk into the salon because the sandwich board doesn’t say anything about that. It actually lists the business name, doesn’t list the address, has the website and a phone number. So maybe that’s what I just need to start with.
ASHLEY: I think some of the old-school marketing tactics that we’ve relied on like business cards at neighboring businesses, postcards on bulletin boards at the coffee shop. Don’t put flyers under wipers. Nobody likes that. It’s not eco-friendly and it’s annoying. And then people will think you’re trying to human traffic them. So just don’t do that. But there are some things that are tried and true for a reason and so if you don’t want to go full force digital with your marketing, I totally understand. There are just going to be some ways that you’re going to have to get a bit uncomfortable and put yourself out there.
JAIME: I see more banners attached to buildings recently than I have in a really long time.
ASHLEY: I’ve seen more banners attached to airplanes recently than I have in a very long time. Geico really wants me to switch and save 15%. Not sponsored.
JAIME: I’ve noticed that.
ASHLEY: Not sponsored.
JAIME: But if Geico, if you’re listening.
ASHLEY: Yeah. Well, we love you.
JAIME: Give us a call. Give us a call. But you know that’s the sort of thing that you would want to check with your landlord about before you ever spent the money on a banner and same thing with even my sandwich board. I’m going to be contacting my landlord and asking because in my current space I’ve never used it. I’ve never set it outside.
ASHLEY: Oh sure.
JAIME: And I’d want to make sure that he was comfortable with that and felt that that was appropriate and safe to place it where I’d want to place it..
ASHLEY: Definitely, always smart to ask for permission instead of forgiveness. But this is a conversation we can continue on our Instagram. Please come, and visit us, and just drop some ideas in the comments of things that have worked for you or things that you might want to try. We’re happy to give feedback and continue the conversation there.
JAIME: And again, I have more work to do, and I think the biggest hurdle for me and, you know it’s true, is the video aspect. I realize it’s just a moment in time, but I have to let go of that perfectionism and just know, hey, I could always shoot another video, and post something fresh, and move on.
ASHLEY: You can always delete it later.
JAIME: Are you sure? I thought the internet was forever.
ASHLEY: The internet is forever, but if somebody is screen recording your salon tour, uh, I think that says more about them than it does about you.
JAIME: That’s good to know. They better call.
ASHLEY: All right. Well, I think that’s a good place to cut it just because we’ve been talking, and talking, and talking. But if you are enjoying Outgrowth, please leave us a review on Apple podcasts and now you can do it with one click. Just type bit.ly, that’s bit.ly/outgrowthpodcast into your browser window and it’ll take you right there.
JAIME: Oh, that’s easy. And as always, you can follow us and comment on recent episodes on Instagram at @outgrowthpodcast.
ASHLEY: Fabulous. We’ll until next week, Jaime.
JAIME: All right, I’m going to be doing some videos.
JAIME: I’m committed now.
ASHLEY: Be smart.
JAIME: Be safe.