Technology Case Study: Interactive Marketing

By Victoria Wurdinger | 07/19/2010 12:04:00 PM

 


INTERACTIVE MARKETING
Eyeball share when the economy is squeezing even the most generous of marketing budgets, these owners are discovering that interactive media allows for the most effective and inexpensive campaigns.


Derek Reynolds, the salon director at Studio Gaven, used to work in a corporate environment with access to a creative department. Now, he produces professional-looking promotions using templates provided through his manufacturer which he prints locally.
SALONS OF ANY SIZE can benefit from interactive marketing, which encompasses website usability, viral marketing, affiliate marketing, social media and eblasts. Most salons are taking advantage of e-blasts because they affordably reach all clients or a targeted group. Use a marketing service to send them out, and all you do is fill out information in a template; they send it to your e-mail list. For a fee, you can also get custom designed e-blasts and newsletters. Analytics allow you to see everything from who opened your e-mails to who passed your offer onto friends.

Jeannie Sutton, owner of Beehive Waxing Salon, Carlsbad, California, says her best advice is to use a service to send out e-blasts. “You can’t do it all, and they understand spamming laws, cull your lists for duplicates and make certain clients can opt-out,” she says. “We send out monthly offers to all our clients and specials for those whose providers have left the salon.”

The director of marketing for Zano Salons and Spas in suburban Chicago, Nettie Badgley, recommends choosing an e-mail marketing service that is highly customizable, so you can use your own artwork and maintain your brand image.

For highly targeted offers, she uses different databases for each of the salon’s five locations. In addition, Zano recently started a teen club, and thus far, has a database of 2,000 for teen targeted promotions.

More than 63% of companies found e-mail marketing the most effective method for customer retention.

Source: The Direct Marketing Association, courtesy GoLoyal.com
 
“The most important element of any e-blast is an interesting subject line,” says Badgley. “Our ‘Annual Spa Sale Save 20%’ message was opened by 28 percent of recipients, which is high. Last year, our BFF offer worked best: If clients brought in another person and both booked the same day, each got 50-percent off. We also promoted that offer on Facebook, and every single location was booked solid for the week of the special.”


Professional marketing material produced using Redken’s My Business Toolbox.
Clients should be given the chance to opt out of e-mails, but they should also be encouraged to pass the offers to a friend. Any more than a monthly mailing is too much, say salons in the know. If you are closely connected with a manufacturer, many make their high-end images available for affiliated salons to use in eblasts, on Facebook pages and more. (They are usually tied to purchasing totals or points.) At Jean-Pierre Salon in Boston, salon manager Kris Baxter simply goes to a corporate website for model and product shots, which she uses in e-mailed postcards, shelf talkers and station signage. Some she prints in the salon on high-quality stock; for others that require heavier paper stock, she simply downloads the digital art and takes it to a local copy shop. As an elite salon, she also has access to large fashion week photos that are used in a light box.

“Once we download the images and offers, we send out the e-blasts,” says Baxter. “Clients love retail promotions. The best ones bundle two or three products at a price savings or offer a third product at a discount.”

“Our manufacturer has templates we can download and add copy to, and they also offer blow ups of model images that we take to a copy shop and mount on foam core for salon posters,” says Derek Reynolds, the salon director at Studio Gaven in Brentwood, Tennessee. “I used to work in a corporate environment with a creative department, but most salons don’t have their own. With all the materials that are available from manufacturers for free, you don’t need one to look great.”

At Currie Hair Skin Nails in Glen Mills, Pennsylvania, owner Randy Currie agrees that maintaining branding and a quality image is crucial to success, when you are using photos and templates from a marketing partner. Beyond e-blasts, he uses corporate-partner images for snail mail postcards, which are sent to the list he purchased, based on zip codes, income and gender. He also posts the images on his salon’s Facebook page, because great images attract eyeballs. “We just downloaded an image and used it in a postcard three weeks ago,” says Currie. “Already we have 20 new appointments.”

Marketing at a Click
Producing esthetically-pleasing, professional marketing materials used to require hours of planning and expensive fees to a creative marketing firm before it was even time to head to the printer. Now, with the help of a number of interactive marketing programs, you can select from their templates to create your own materials in a matter of minutes. Here are a few to check out:

• Quark Promote
quarkpromote.com
Quark Promote is free, easy-to-use software that allows salon and spa owners to create their own high-quality, professional marketing materials that can be picked up at a neighborhood printer or received by mail in just a few days. The easy-to-use service allows people with no design or printing experience to customize professionally designed templates for business cards, postcards, flyers, brochures, appointment cards coupons, letterhead and envelopes.

• Go Loyal
goloyal.com
GoLoyal is a full-service e-mail marketing company specializing in customized opt-in campaigns whose goal is to build customer loyalty among your client base. The company’s mix of technology, customer service, idea generation and design helps drive repeat customers to your salon for a low cost.

• Redken’s My Business Toolbox
redken.com
Redken’s My Business Toolbox provides the tools for salons to address and impact growth within the 4Rs (referral, retention, rebooking and retailing). This section of Redken.com features customizable, Redken-branded templates to help salons create postcards, posters, referral cards, client cards, service menus, self signage, shelf talkers and gift certifi cates at very competitive rates.

 
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