Hi ssilverton, welcome to our community! Congratulations on opening your new salon! You've asked a great question. As a new business owner, you've already learned that you need to attract customers, but need to keep on a minimal budget. Our experts have written a great article that I think you'll find helpful and may give you some fresh ideas: 8 Ways to Market on a Shoestring.
Another great idea that our experts recommend is utilizing the power of Linkedin. Many small business owners don't think about the power of LinkedIn, and it just may be the single site that can do the most for most small businesses. You can learn more about the power of LinkedIn and 5 Little-Known Ways to Use LinkedIn to Grow Your Business.
I hope you find these articles hopeful! I know that our friendly and knowledgeable community members will have some additional tips for you. Feel free to browse our discussions and articles as well as you will find many helpful discussions that every new small business owner should know.
My first suggestion would be to try out a salon marketing software such as Booker or Rosy. Those start around $30 a month, but they can absolutely be worth it.
Lower cost options? With Craigslist, might as well give it a shot. Can't hurt. I would also make sure your Yelp, Google Maps, and other listings are all up-to-date with as many good reviews as possible. Don't do anything illicit, like pay for reviews or anything – the easiest and best thing to do is to ask customers to review you after providing them with service. 9/10 customers are willing to leave a good review if business owners merely ask. If you ask satisfied customers to review you on Yelp or Google, you'll start to see those good reviews add up. From there, it won't be long before you see customers pouring in from those channels. We have a longer list of 25 marketing ideas for salon owners, but that's my #1 low-cost tip.
Michael makes some really good points with getting reviews on Yelp from your current customers. I might also recommend creating a Facebook Page for your business (if you have not already). Your Facebook presence doesn't have to be entirely about your business - featuring community events will also draw visitors (and fans!) to your page. You could even offer a "refer a friend" special - offering your current customers a % off their next visit or a discount on styling supplies for every NEW customer they refer I know it seems somewhat overwhelming, but there are a lot of inexpensive or free ways that you can promote your business.
Please let us know what you decide to try and how it works for you, ssilverton!
I just opened a salon and I'm looking for tips on low- or no-cost marketing strategies to attract new hair and nail clients.
Everyone I've talked to says Craigslist is the best totally free traffic source and a few people are running their ads full time in CL AutoPilot:. Has anyone used this software? It's free but before I invest the time I wanted to find out if it really works.