4 years ago when I opened my spa, I found it really hard to get enough clients to fill the appointment book.
I tried lots of marketing tactics, I distributed flyers, I had magazine ads, I even had a billboard at one point, but the results were kinda lackluster many times.
Along the journey, I learned what works best for spas and salons when it comes to marketing and most importantly, to getting clients! And that’s what I want to share with you today.
I have 3 strategies for you that will get you clients at a low cost…or at no cost!
#1: Cross promotion
What’s this about:
I know, I know…you tried cross promotion in the past, but it didn’t work.
Read on, lovely, because I’d say 90% of the time it’s not done in the right way.
For those of you who don’t know what cross promotion is, it’s about teaming up with another service provider or another business that has a complementary service to yours and promote each other’s services.
For example, if you are a hair stylist, you can team up with a massage therapist, an esthetician or a nail technician and recommend each other’s services to your clients.
Why this strategy rocks:
It’s a win-win situation for both of you: you get new clients and because they were referred to you by someone they know, they already trust you at some level.
And I’m sure you know that it’s essential that your clients trust you when it comes to bookings and re-bookings, upsells, retail sales etc.
And another huge bonus is that cross promotions are free!
However, for cross promotions to work, you must do it right.
• Common mistake #1: you target the wrong type of service providers or businesses…
How not to make this mistake:
• you and your partner’s target market should be similar, for example, one of the most important things is to target the same demographic and the same income level.
I mean, for example, if your prices are more on the higher end, there’s no point in teaming up with a business that caters for people with lower incomes because their clients won’t be able to afford your services.
• your business should be a great match with the other business
Examples of great matches
• other service providers in the beauty industry, such as hair stylists, estheticians, nail technicians, lash artists etc. (that are not your competitors)
• businesses in other industries with a connection point, such as
• photographers: pretty straightforward, most people want to get beautiful before a photoshoot so the photographers need you, but you can also refer clients to them
• stylists (wardrobe stylists): related field
• fitness instructors: again, quite related
• dating agencies: dating agencies can refer their clients to you who need to update their looks, and you can send your single clients to them
• wedding planners: they have brides who want to get pretty before their big day and you might have clients who want to get married
• chiropractors, acupuncturists, naturopaths, alternative healers: for those of you who offer any body work, these professionals are great partners…
• life coaches
• Common mistake # 2: set up kinks:
Many people agree just verbally with a partner that they will recommend the other business when the situation arises.
But this is not really good because it’s quite vague, I mean they might recommend you only once every 3 months, right? How many new clients do you think that will get you?
There’s nothing wrong with a verbal agreement, although you can have a written agreement if you want to, but the point is to have more structure about how this cross-promotion will be carried out.
How to have more structure:
• definitely have gift cards that you and your partner will cross-distribute to your own clients…the gift card could be about a free mini-treatment, a discount or a certain amount off. Make sure you have an expiration date on the card, okay? You can have a tracking number on it as well.
• if both of you use online marketing channels, cross- feature the offers on your social media pages and in your emails so that your reach will be much larger than just handing out the cards after each treatment.
• Common mistake #3: it must be a win-win: otherwise, if you approach a business that wouldn’t benefit from the collaboration, you will likely hear a no.
For example, my spa was once approached by a real estate agency to promote their villas to our clients, but I didn’t see how this could be a win-win for us, so I said no.
Want the roadmap on how to fill your appointment book fast? Grab your FREE spot at Fast-track to Fully Booked, my 3-day video course!
What’s this about?
Host events in your salon or spa and promote it to reach potential new clients!
Also, invite your clients and ask them to bring their friends so you reach new people through them as well.
It doesn’t have to be the party of the year, it’s not the point!
The point is to get people through the door so they can get to know you and your business.
Once the guests get to know you at the event, the key is to encourage them to actually make a booking for a full priced service, by for example, doing a Flash sale at the event, or giving them a service upgrade if they book during the event.
• make up bag consultation
• skin care routine consultation
• beauty Q&A evening
• seminar/workshop on a related topic/on a service of yours
• complimentary mini service, such as:
• braid for hair stylists
• lip facial and lip color application for beauticians/MUAs
• head massage for massage therapists
• nail color application for nail salons
team up with other companies to amplify your efforts and cross-promote the event among each of your companies’ clients!
Here are few event ideas to host with partners:
• bridal open day:
• partners for this: beauty service providers, wedding planners, photographers, wedding boutiques, caterers, even venues!
• Benefit for guests: From your end, you can do a complimentary mini treatment or a consultation for interested guests
• fashion day for single ladies
• potential partners for this: dating agency, photographer, hair stylist, stylist, make up artist, nail technician, fashion boutique
• benefit for the guests: they get their photos taken after they got their hair, makeup, nails done
• beauty Q&A evening/beauty and lifestyle Q&A
• potential partner: coaches, beauty businesses
• benefit for the guests: get their Qs answered, might get a consultation
Want to get clients like…yesterday? Grab your free spot at my Fast-track to Fully Booked, a 3-day video course.
#3: FB ads
Many people say that FB ads don’t work for them, but I’m gonna bust this myth because yes, you can make it work and no, it’s not super complicated.
Why this strategy rocks:
• cost effective: the cost to get in front of 1000 people is just $0.25…compare this to magazine ads or even just printing flyers!
• set up can be quicker than offline tactics: you can go to your FB ads manager and set up campaigns right away
• quick results: you can start seeing leads coming within hours after you set up the campaign
• if done well, significant return on investment (for every $1 that you invest in advertising, you can get $20, $50, $80 or even more in return…no joke! One of my best campaigns got me leads for 30 cents…not bad when a typical client spends over $100 per visit)
Ah, there are so many possible mistakes!
Let’s just look at 3:
#1: Using the wrong type of ad
Many businesses use the wrong type of ad for their business objectives.
Many newbies start with Page like campaigns because they are super easy to set up and what can be wrong with getting more likes, right?
Well, if your goal is to get clients now, don’t waste your time and money running page like campaigns because followers won’t necessarily make an appointment, especially not right away. Besides, your page likes will increase regardless of the type of campaign you’re running.
#2: Not being sure about the target market
Many newbie FB advertisers don’t know who their target market is, so they leave the target market waaay too wide….
….like anyone who has a face or a body.
The problem with this is that they end up spending more than they would if their targeting was more focused.
#3: Vague or overwhelming offers
So many people when they start, they are not sure what exactly to offer because they don’t know what would be the most exciting deal for their people.
…they figure that they should just offer everything or keep it kind of vague and people who are interested will choose what they want.
Sounds logical, right?
Well, most people don’t know what they want so you have to give them some guidance or give them one deal only, take it or leave it.
As I said, FB ads (and marketing…) is a huge topic so…
…why don’t you hang out with me during the next 3 days so I can give you a step by step strategy on how to get 10+ new spa/salon clients per week?
Grab your free spot at my Fast-track to Fully Booked, a 3-day video course.
Which strategy will you start implementing?
Let me know in the comments below.