In today’s hyper-connected world, small businesses can take great advantage of online marketing. Having a strong customer base is important, especially to drive organic, word-of-mouth marketing. However, a robust online presence not only multiplies that marketing, it also enables a greater connection to your customers.
Beauty business owners with sound online marketing see these connections every day. From loyalty clubs to personalized birthday greetings, online marketing is crucial—and not just for growing market shares and increasing profit. Online marketing creates a more integrated connection between a business and its customers.
Here are four essential online marketing techniques for beauty business owners.
In-Store Beauty Meets Online Marketing
Online marketing creates a personalized relationship between client and business. In the beauty industry, customers find and stick with their favorite brands, stylists, and styles. Establishing a strong rapport is therefore vital.
Online marketing allows beauty professionals to reach out and stay connected between appointments. Staying on the customer’s mind is a sure-fire way to maintain the relationship. To suit the needs of every client, these four methods highlight strong marketing techniques for anyone to use.
1. Optimize Your Online Support Presence
The customers of 2022 expect omnichannel support. In other words, your clients want to browse services, find a stylist, and book an appointment wherever they are. Whether on their mobile device in an Uber, or sitting down on the couch with a tablet, it doesn’t matter; your marketing presence in 2022 must be available in every offering.
To begin, establish various customer services and support across all channels. These include:
- Email support
- Chatbots and site assistance
- Live chats with company representatives
- Text and phone support at all hours
- Active social media presence
Customers are likely to use a variety of these features every day. If they see your business’ name on these channels, your name won’t leave their minds. Plus, they’ll know how many ways they can contact your business, if needed.
Online support also provides insight into your customers. Get to know what your customers want directly. Then, use that information to target advertisements, sales, and other marketing campaigns. Focus on common demographics, lifestyles, or purchase tendencies. Understanding your customers helps you better target your services.
2. Use Social Media to Connect to the Community
Social media marketing is fundamental. Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok all provide excellent platforms for beauty professionals and services. Create an active social media community to bolster the impact and clout of your brand.
We live in a world of constant exposure. The beauty industry sits at the forefront of that exposure. Embrace it and embrace your clientele. Critical social media factors to include are:
- Customer reviews: 77% of consumers read online reviews before using a service.
- Regular communication with customers: Over half of consumers are unlikely to use a service that doesn’t respond to reviews, questions, or communication.
- Optimize your Facebook and Google Ad platforms: These allow potential customers more opportunities to find your socials.
- Work with local influencers: Organically expand your base by using popular names to highlight your brand. Staying close to home helps accentuate your local customers.
The beauty industry and social media are a perfect match. Use that match to its full potential. Create a solid social media presence across every platform to ensure you’re reaching all potential customers.
3. Bolster Customer Service Through Outreach
Along with social media, customer outreach helps ensure your clients are happy. If social media allows your customers to talk to you, outreach lets you connect with them.
Email ads and communications are some of the most popular approaches. They are the major source of customer retention for most small businesses. From newsletters to personalized birthday coupons, emails drive sales. Email marketing allows for simple but effective strategies. For example:
- Announce special events to draw in customers, such as hairstyling tutorials.
- Send seasonal sale updates.
- Remind customers of upcoming appointments.
- Announce referral programs, newsletter-only deals, or other limited-time promotions.
- Ask customers for a review after an appointment.
None of these emails are invasive. They highlight that the customer is in mind, and today’s customers understand this. Many of these same strategies work as texts/SMS. For best results, pick one method and stick with it. Mixing email and SMS marketing sometimes comes across as too pushy.
A working relationship between customer and business thrives on communication. And a good outreach program ensures strong customer service and retention.
4. Create a Loyalty Program
Maximizing all online marketing channels is essential. Loyalty programs reward the customers for interacting with that online marketing. In fact, over 70% of consumers choose a business over a competitor because of a meaningful loyalty program.
Loyalty programs provide several benefits for customers and the business. Customers benefit from points, free services, or whatever else you decide to offer in the loyalty plan. At the same time, businesses enjoy increased retention and continued customer purchasing.
There are many loyalty programs to use in a beauty business. The most common include:
- Perks programs: At different levels, offer customers free products or services.
- Points programs: Customers accumulate points through purchases. They spend those points on services and products.
- Tier programs: These are both free and paid. Based on different thresholds, including spending amounts or subscription levels, customers have access to varying levels of rewards.
Similar in concept, refer-a-friend programs are another simple loyalty program. The customers get rewards and a new beauty professional. The company benefits from continued patronage and new customers. Loyalty is a two-way street, so loyalty programs help ensure that both customer and business benefit.
Beauty professionals and business owners are perfectly poised to take advantage of online marketing. Today’s customers want connection at their fingertips. Online outreach allows that — and more.
Be proactive, and communicate through email or social media ads. Send personalized birthday messages to drive sales. Last, but not least, create a robust loyalty program for organic growth and a strengthened customer base.