Oh, the good old days of marketing when you dreamed up a campaign, called the local newspaper to place an ad and backed it up with a little salon signage. Today, that’s only a piece of the action—now you want to take that info and also e-mail it, text it, Tweet it, and Facebook it—and that’s just the beginning. As our technological capabilities expand, marketing has gotten far more complex.
Berenices in Denver, Colorado, was a beta testing site for the salon version of integrated marketing program Demandforce, and the salon’s owners claim it was responsible for an additional $30,000 in revenue in its first six months.
“Everything’s getting integrated,” says Paul Tate, CEO of Shortcuts North America. “This means it’s much easier to get more things done, faster. For example, point-of-sale database is now integrated with e-mail marketing systems so e-mails can be triggered by events in the salon, such as a new client in the salon or a client birthday. This sort of integration and automation makes it easy to send timely, relevant e-mail blasts or e-mail confirmations without spending hours coordinating these communications.”
“This sort of technology integration is also making the business much more accessible. For example, five years ago salons started allowing clients to book online, but now these online booking systems are making their way to social platforms where clients “hang out,” like Facebook, and these networks are becoming more commercial with shopping carts, booking engines and
e-commerce functions. ”
One integrated marketing and communication platform getting some strong play in the salon industry is Demandforce, a program that originally launched in the dental and automotive industries. Demandforce was introduced to the salon industry through a strategic alliance with SalonBiz, although the program can work with any salon software.
Basically, after downloading the salon’s client communication information into the system—a process that takes about 30 minutes—the program automates many of the mindless, tedious tasks that many front desks do by hand.
First, Demandforce sends out appointment reminders via text or e-mail, according to client preference. Clients are prompted to respond to keep the appointment as is or communicate to the salon if they need to reschedule. “Once a client comes into the salon for a service, she receives a follow-up thank you e-mail, with a message such as ‘Thanks for coming in today, it’s always great to see you,’” says John Cranston, Demandforce senior business development manager.