Why should I use email marketing?

If you’re like most salon owners, you’ve probably bought into the importance of social media as your key channel of communication with your clients.

The problem is that in most cases less than 10% of your followers will see your posts (if you only have a small number of followers, it could be a little higher).

Because of the way social media algorithms work, they’re more likely to show your posts to people who have engaged with your content before, which means that if a client hasn’t interacted with a few of your posts, they won’t be shown any more for a while. So, it’s really easy to find yourself talking to the same small group of clients. All. Of. The. Time.

In contrast, if you send an email out to your mailing list, you know that pretty much every single person is going to receive it in their inbox.

 So all you’ve got to do is come up with an ‘OPEN ME!’ subject line, content that makes them want to read on and a call to action (CTA) that makes them take action e.g. buy, book or share. Simple really ?

How often should I send salon newsletters?

The secret to your communications is that they need to be frequent enough to stay in your clients’ minds, and contain relevant and interesting content.

With any marketing consistency is key, but it is ok to mix it up occasionally. As a rule, divide your newsletters into two categories:

  • Regular updates – aim to send these out monthly or fortnightly, depending on what you can stick to.
  • Exciting announcements – send these when – and only when – you’ve got something exciting you want to share.

Anything else I should know about how to make a salon newsletter work?

Knowing how often to post is one thing, but how do you make it interesting for your clients and what should a good salon newsletter include?

Well, the first thing to remember is that it’s not always what you say, it’s the way that you say it, so two key tactics are:

  1. Don’t be too formal – your newsletter doesn’t need to read like a newspaper or a best seller, but it does need to sound like your brand.
  2. Keep it simple – don’t include too many sections or too much information or you’ll lose people.

When it comes to content, these are some of the ideas that have had the most success for clients.

  1. Salon news – anything new that’s happened since the last newsletter.
  2. Local news or events
  3. Forthcoming salon events
  4. Spotlight on a team member – a bit about them and what they do best
  5. Spotlight on a product – this works best if your mailing list is segmented so it’s relevant to the clients who receive it
  6. Spotlight on a local business – teaming up with local like-minded businesses is a great way to share your marketing cosys.
  7. Trend watch/report – a key look right now, who it suits, what to ask for
  8. Celeb style (beware of where you source your images though) – this could be a get the look or it could just be a an analysis.
  9. Haircare tips and advice – again, this works better with a segmented mailing list
  10. Quirky facts and trivia – on this day, or random facts always amuse people
  11. Recent client photos – these don’t have to be before and afters.
  12. Client of the month – chosen from someone who has recently reviewed you online/referred people
  13. Employee of the month – because we all like to celebrate success
  14. Funny stories from behind the chair – you need to be sensitive about this, but stories from you or your training will always engage clients. Avoid anything recent or anything that will make you seem unprofessional
  15. Latest offers – even if you ‘don’t do discounts’ a bundled package or added value on your gift vouchers will catch attention
  16. News or launches from your product partners
  17. Competitions – giveaways, caption comps, guess the team member (baby pics)
  18. The talk of the salon – listen out for recurring conversations or hairstyles that everyone seems to be talking about
  19. Styling glossary – if you’re not in the hair bubble the language of styling and colouring is pretty confusing, so spell it out, but keep it simple
  20. #Askthestylist – it could be questions you’re asked in the salon, on social or you could request questions.

Other questions I’m often asked about salon newsletters.

Do I need to have a fancy template?

No, not if you don’t want to – not so long ago a nice template was where it was at, but now text only emails are better because people feel less like they are being sold to. I’ve found that a newsletter without a header image is way more likely to make it through a spam filter too.

What newsletter software should I use?

Most salons I work with use Mailchimp. It’s easy to use, GDPR compliant, and, depending on how big your mailing list is, it’s often free. However, I choose Active Campaign, because it’s great for automation. MailerLite is another good choice. I’ll spell out the pros and cons in another post.

How do I know if my newsletter is working?

It depends what success looks like to you. If you just want to know that people are reading what your newsletters, then check out the open metrics in your email software and listen out to see if your clients talk to you about them. If you’re running campaigns then it’s all about seeing how often the code or offer you used in your promotion is being used.

What do I need to know about GDPR and newsletters?

A few things… your clients need to have opted in to have received it, they need to be able to unsubscribe at any time. They need to know that their data is secure. It needs to conform to your data protection policy and therefore should only be kept for a reasonable length of time – up to 3 years after their last visit is standard.