The Salon Owners Podcast: Phorest FM Episode 13 (Loyalty Programs)

phorest fm episode 13

Welcome to the Salon Owner’s Podcast, Phorest FM Episode 13. Co-hosted by Killian Vigna and Zoé Bélisle-Springer, this show is a mix of interviews with industry thought-leaders, roundups of our most recent salon owners marketing tips & tricks, all the latest in and around Phorest and what upcoming webinars you can join. Phorest FM is produced every Monday morning for your enjoyment with a cup of coffee on your day off.

Phorest FM Episode 13

Some salon treatments are not easy to promote – that is when we’re talking specifically about hair removal. By thinking of creative and unique ideas, it can be not only possible, but fun to advertise waxing services. In this episode, we address how salon owners can approach this topic, and then have Barry Quinn, the head of the Phorest Salon Software Grow team, explain the pros and cons of loyalty systems. He goes in depth about how our loyalty program, the Treat Card system, works and why it is so successful in the salon industry. Another guest in this episode is Luke Doolin of the Phorest Salon Software SMS team, who shares details on the Valentine’s Day marketing campaigns they have been working on.

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Transcript

Killian Vigna: Welcome to the Phorest FM podcast, episode 13. I’m your host Killian Vigna.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: And I’m Zoe Belisle-Springer, your co-host.

Killian Vigna: In this episode of Phorest FM, we’re going to go through great hair removal marketing campaign ideas you can try out. Our Head of Grow will show you some tips for a successful loyalty program. Our SMS advisor will be in to talk about the latest Valentine’s Day SMS and email campaigns he’s been working on, and as always, we top off the show with our upcoming Phorest Academy webinars.

This podcast is produced every Monday morning for your enjoyment with a cup of coffee on your day off. Now, let’s get into the show.

So, Zoe, this was a blog done up because you had a couple of queries coming from salon owners and stuff like that.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Exactly, yeah.

Killian Vigna: So, we know we’ve got hairdressers, and then you’ve got the beauty salons, but there’s that third salon that sometimes just gets a little bit left out in the marketing because it’s a little more kind of-

Zoe Belisle-Springer: It’s very targeted.

Killian Vigna: It’s very targeted, and some people are, I suppose, iffy on what they put up on Facebook, like how much can they put up about it? What we’re talking about today is-

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Hair removal marketing ideas.

Killian Vigna: Hair removal. So, waxing or anything like that.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: And it’s interesting to see because like I’m going to tie this up to the salon, the Snapchat guide that we wrote in which we had Ellen Kavanagh talk about how she used Snapchat. Obviously, if you think about it, you can’t go into a treatment room and just Snapchat every waxing service that’s going on.

Killian Vigna: Exactly. I don’t think I’d like that. Not that I’m going in for waxing, but I don’t think I’d be taking the before and after pictures and showing them off online.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Right.

Killian Vigna: But like you said, Ellen, Waxperts, her whole business is waxing and hair removal, and she’s nailing it on Snapchat and stuff like that.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Oh, yeah. Absolutely. When you think about it, you just need to use a little bit more creativity to put up some marketing campaigns, and especially the ones that are on social kind of thing. If you’re doing, obviously, if you’re sending an email or an SMS, then you can talk about what you do, but if you’re on Facebook you can’t necessarily show nudity and stuff and promote it, because actually Facebook will probably take it down.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, and they’re doing a big clamp down lately on certain images and stuff, isn’t it?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, exactly, yeah.

Killian Vigna: If you’re revealing too much-

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Especially when you boost posts and stuff, they’ll flag it for nudity and stuff like that. But there are definitely different things you can do on social media just to boost engagement at least, and then drive traffic maybe to your website, or drive traffic back to at least create a certain brand awareness so that your clients, when they see your newsletter, they go like, “Oh, yeah. I’ve seen this going on on Facebook. I’ve seen this … I reckon I can book an appointment for this and it’d be great.”

Killian Vigna: So, it’s creating consistency to it as well.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. On this blog, basically, there’s a few marketing ideas there. There’s one for boosting engagement on Facebook. For instance-

Killian Vigna: I’ve just scrolled down and saw the picture for this one.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. But there’s one that I really enjoyed. Basically, recently on our Phorest Facebook page, I shared a video of this little girl who is just flicking her eyebrows and she’s so happy, it’s just like she’s-

Killian Vigna: Oh, this is the little video, yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: She’s adorable. She’s so adorable.

Killian Vigna: I remember you showing me this video before it even opened. Everyone in the office was in stitches.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, because the caption on the video is like, “When you get your eyebrows done,” and the little girl’s just flicking her eyebrows being amazed by it. So, I just shared it in and said, “Tag a beloved client of yours who’s done this before, who hasn’t been back in a while,” or something.

Killian Vigna: So, it’s something like that, that was just a piece of general content of a little girl messing with her eyebrows. It doesn’t mean anything.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Exactly.

Killian Vigna: It’s the fact that you’ve turned around and gone, “When you get your eyebrows done-”

Zoe Belisle-Springer: This is what you feel.

Killian Vigna: The caption is, “When you get your eyebrows-”

Zoe Belisle-Springer: And that’s exactly what a salon owner did, actually. She sent us a message being like, “We’ve used this, tweaked it a little and posted it on our page and actually got loads of engagement.” She posted, “You can get your eyebrows done for £15 today,” or something like that. It was just a really cool way to market her service without actually showing the waxing part, you know? You’re going for how you feel after.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, because we do see some campaigns out there on Facebook and stuff and a lot of is basically just a semi-naked man or woman, an image of the two of them just standing there going, “Get your waxing done.” You’re kind of going, “Well, why would I like or comment? Why would I engage with this at all?” Where a video of a little girl or the image that I’m laughing at here is a really hairy penguin. Simple things like that. Then, you’ve got this A, B, C, D, E poster-

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, so basically that’s like asking questions, “Which would you prefer?” Kind of thing. Yeah, you can have a lot of fun with it.

Killian Vigna: Yeah. It’s the perspective you look at it with.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. I think that for hair removal campaigns and stuff, especially on Facebook where rules are getting tighter and tighter, and Instagram is getting tighter as well in those rules because it is owned by Facebook when you think of it. I think it’s just to use a little more creativity and flip things around and maybe go for the feeling that you feel after, not necessarily showcasing what it is when you get it done kind of vibe.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, the whole afters thing, we’re not just talking about, “Oh, I got a wax, I feel grand,” it’s everything that comes after. It’s like, “Why did you get it done in the first place? Heres why. Heres what you can now do.”

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Exactly. Yeah, yeah, yeah. So, there’s a few things in there. There’s email campaign ideas as well, SMS campaigns. The other cool thing that you can do is, once again, it’s flipping things around, it’s ambient marketing and advertising. It’s just like to put your product or some sort of funny, creative content in places that people wouldn’t actually think of. Even if you have a little extra budget that month and you want to get an advertising campaign maybe outside and put flyers out, but something funny and creative that’ll hook people in and be like, “Oh, that’s unusual.” It’ll just catch your attention.

Killian Vigna: Get out there with a couple of guerilla marketing. The entrance to your salon could even be several different little plant pots, and I suppose as you get closer to the door, they get more trimmed and more manicured.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Exactly.

Killian Vigna: Anything like that. Something just to stand out.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, exactly.

Killian Vigna: It doesn’t have to be Facebook, it doesn’t have to be email and SMS. Think outside the box here.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, exactly. So, that’s pretty much what the blog is about. We also have a guest in today from the Grow team, Head of Grow Team, Barry Quinn. How are you doing?

Barry Quinn: How’s it going? All right.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Good, good.

Killian Vigna: So, what’s going on here is, basically, as we know, we’ve just finished off January, we’re coming into February. In January, we’d a lot of salon owners contact and go, “Listen, how can I get clients to come back in?” Because you’ve had the three months coming up to Christmas, those seats basically booked themselves out. We know we’ve had the Attitude of Gratitude gift card that helped boomerang them back in, but this is more for a year round, “How do we get salon owners to come back in?” I suppose, “How do we create a successful loyalty program?” So, I suppose the best man to talk about it is Barry.

Barry Quinn: Okay. No pressure, yeah. Cool, yeah, just loyalty programs in general, if I can start off with that. A really good loyalty program is a great way to clients to spend more money more often, obviously. I think it’s an area that is everywhere, it’s in every industry, loyalty programs. Not a whole lot of talk goes into it sometimes. The default position for a lot of different loyalty programs is the coffee shop example.

Killian Vigna: Oh, my wallet is full of them.

Barry Quinn: Yeah, still today, 2017, I’m working in the hair and beauty industry nearly eight years now and just, again, crossing to different industries, the way things were going on loyalty systems eight years ago are pretty much still the same today. By and large, obviously there’s a little bit of innovation here and there, but what you usually see is collect certain amount of stamps and get rewarded with product X or service X or meal X when you get to a certain stage within the stamp card.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Killian Vigna: So that’s like your coffee cup, buy ten coffees, get one free.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Get two of them free.

Barry Quinn: Yeah. Buy nine, get a tenth free.

Killian Vigna: A free one free, yeah.

Barry Quinn: The example I’ve always had was, where we are in Dublin here, just off Capel Street. If you go out to buy a coffee on Capel Street, you can go to, obviously, the coffee shops that are there, you can go to McDonald’s around the corner, you can go to a pub, you can go to… Pretty much anywhere on the street you can buy a coffee. You can buy a coffee anywhere. That’s why a coffee shop offers you, “Buy nine, get the tenth free,” because they know you can buy a coffee anywhere. Going to a salon, you go to a salon, or clients go to a salon because they like the therapist, they like the stylist, they like how they feel after the treatment, they like the atmosphere of the business, that it’s close to where they work, maybe. They go there for different reasons, it’s not because they can get that experience anywhere, but what a lot of business, particularly in the hair and beauty industry, can fall into is, “Buy five, get the sixth free,” or, “Buy five, get 50% off your sixth service or your sixth treatment.” What we’ve always advocated was to steer clear of that and not fall into that because effectively what it is is discounting. If you’ve got so many-

Killian Vigna: And that’s a big no-no.

Barry Quinn: Absolutely, yeah.  And you know, it kind of ties into a couple of things, like that effectively is discounting, which we obviously advocate not to do. But also, the likes of market places, if you’re on a different kind of marketplace, yeah?

Killian Vigna: I don’t know, Barry. You know more than the rest of us.

Barry Quinn: If you’re on any of these deal websites, let’s say, generally what happens is, the deal website is taking a cut from whatever offer that you put up there. They might be taking 20%, 25, 30% of whatever your offer is, which obviously, again, is discounting. Generally, there will already be a discount on the offer, and then you’re obviously giving these deal websites a massive percentage of that as well.  And the idea is to bring new people into your business, that’s what they say to you.

Killian Vigna: So, you’re not only getting rid of your margin, it costs you on top of the cost.

Barry Quinn: I think the deal, what people kind of buy into with it, what they actually are, effectively, buying into is that this year they’re bringing in new clients. What a good loyalty system does is it retains your clients. It retains the clients that you have, keeps them coming back and hopefully spending more money. I know I’m kind of getting side-tracked here with the marketplace example, but a lot of those clients aren’t ever going to be that type of client. I suppose the reason I’m bringing that up as well is because it feeds into that culture of discounting. The old school loyalty of, “Buy five, get sixth free,” or, “Buy five, get 50% off the sixth,” or putting yourself on the marketplace, it’s in the same category. You’re eating into what your profit margin should be. What a really good loyalty system should try, as best as it can, to keep you clear of that sort of stuff, and to retain the clients that you’ve got. A really, really good loyalty system will also refer new people into your business as well because you’re doing things that other salons don’t do. If it’s really good, as well, your clients will be brand ambassadors for you and tell their friends about it, and they will be rewarded with bonus points and stuff like that for that as well.

Killian Vigna: Even though with the coffee shop ones, they tend to be a piece of card, you stick it in the back of your wallet, you never see it again. A good one to have if you aren’t going to do tags like that, stick it on the keys like the old supermarkets and stuff like those that have the coins, the trolley coins, anything like that. That’s brand awareness because your keys are probably the thing that’s in your hand most, you’re always going to have it. You could have your wallet, your purse in your hand, but those cards are buried in the back of them. Brand awareness as well.

Barry Quinn: Yeah, so that precise example. Those cards go straight into your wallet or into your purse. How many cards have you got in your wallet or your purse? You never… you see your bank card maybe or your travel card, is probably the first things that you see, or your gym membership that you visit once a month.

Killian Vigna: So yeah, the credit card and the travel, yeah.

Barry Quinn: So, they are the ones that will be the most prominent ones within your wallet or your purse, to use that example. With a key tag, which is what we recommend, with a key tag, it’s on your keys, and every time you come to pay when you’re in the business, the staff at the salon should ask you for your key tag. That’s for a couple of different reasons. It’s not just to scan it in and to get your points, which obviously is really important, but it gives a platform and an opportunity for, number one, the salon to say to the client, “You’ve got X amount of points,” or, “Do you know that if you recommend a friend, you get X amount of bonus points?”

Zoe Belisle-Springer: X amount of points, yeah.

Barry Quinn: Or maybe if you buy products, “Do you know if you buy products from us, you get double points?” So it gives the salon a platform to indirectly sell these features to the clients without being awfully pushy, which I know people don’t like to do. And vice versa for the client of the salon. They feel comfortable; they can ask questions, they can say, “How many points have I got?” Or, “What do I need to do to get to this level of reward?” They feel comfortable asking those questions, which might be a little bit awkward just bringing that up in the middle of your service or your treatment.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, it’s nearly gamifying it for the clients. The client is coming in week after week going, “Oh, I wonder how many points am I off now.” It’s like the Tesco points or anything like that where you get discounts and vouchers and stuff at the end. But these clients are getting actual treatments or products, so it kind of gives that excitement about coming in and redeeming new points.

Barry Quinn: Yeah, absolutely. An excellent… Another excellent, just so I can speak about our own program here, but somewhere to track your points as well. We’ve got the branded app where clients can actually track their progress. If they don’t have enough points for something, it tells them, “Keep going; you need 50 points to get your next reward.” There’s an element of surprise and delight in there; it doesn’t tell them what it is. It tells them to keep going and then once they pass that threshold, they’re entitled to a free reward. If they do have enough points, it tells them, “Congratulations, you’re entitled to a free treatment.” Importantly for a salon owner as well, specifically for salons here:

Obviously, this is filling up the white space in your appointment book, but you need to be really careful with is, even if the loyalty system is a really good loyalty system, that you don’t get caught in the trap of just giving away free treatments or free rewards. You need to have a hook with that as well. It needs to be with a paid treatment or a paid service. You can’t be filling your days just giving away free things. It needs to be added value. When somebody gets rewarded, it needs to be, yes, something free of charge, completely free, or a free product maybe, but it must be with a paid treatment. They must be paying for their regular appointments to get this free thing. The most important thing which we’ve probably omitted to mention at this stage is that, don’t give the regular treatments or the regular services free of charge. That’s your bread and butter. That’s what keeps your business ticking over. It’s the lifeblood of your business. You can’t give that away free.

If somebody, let’s take a facial client, for example, if somebody comes in every four weeks for a facial, I won’t name any brands, but let’s say they’re in for a particular facial, they come in every four weeks for that. Again, to go back to my original point, they come in because they love the staff member, they like their business, they like the ambience, they like the atmosphere, they like all of that. That’s why they’re coming back. If they buy seven and you’re offering the eighth free, what are you doing that for? They’ve bought seven. They’re paying for this.

Killian Vigna: They were going to buy it anyway.

Barry Quinn: They’re going to buy that eighth one. Don’t do that. Give them a product, maybe, that complements the facial, free of charge when they’ve reached reward stage, or give them a file and polish or an express manicure, express pedicure. Whatever it might be, give them something they’ve never tried before. That’s adding value; it’s a surprise, it’s a treat for the client which they don’t expect. They might like it. If they really like it, a percentage of your clients will actually spend money on it in future. That way, you’re upselling your other various products, and you’re giving yourself a better chance long term to increase that client’s average spend, rather than decreasing which is exactly what 90% of loyalty programs do. It decreases a client’s average spend because you’re giving them something free which they probably would have spent money on anyway. That’s a really important point for any loyalty system to actually do. Do your homework and do your maths on this. Is this actually going to affect your bottom line? If it’s reducing the amount of money you potentially might make as a salon this year, do not do it. It’s a huge risk, and it’s actually going to eat into your profits.

So, try and add value as best you can and upsell things that clients don’t usually spend money on because if you can do that, you’re looking at… it doesn’t need to be anything spectacular here. We’re talking about, if you take a salon that might have two, two and a half thousand clients on their data base, obviously they’re not all active. If you can get 10% of them to spend an extra £10 even per visit which might be every six or seven weeks, if you can get 10% of your clients to spend an extra £10, that has massive impact on your revenue at the end of the year. Could be an extra £15,000, £20,000 if it’s done the right way.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: And with products, you can easily tap into something that they can use on a daily basis, in the end.

Killian Vigna: Yes, and this brings us back to whole upsell. We know staff don’t tend to do the whole upselling or pushing products. If I’m sitting there getting a hair treatment and you sell particular products that could keep this hair treatment looking good, there’s a bit of an issue out there pushing it. The Treat Card is doing that for you. The Treat Card is upselling. Like Barry said, if you’re coming in, a client is coming in buying a particular product every week, to see you, as a professional, if you turn round and go, “Well actually, you’ve got points for a new product, I’d recommend this one.” All you’re doing is recommending it. They’re getting it for free anyway, so they’re going to take it. Next week they come in, buy the standard product and possibly end up paying for that new product as well.

Barry Quinn: That’s it. That’s the perfect example. To set the scene, in the salon, the client has a key tag, they’re part of the system, they build points every time they come in, they get bonus points for referring friends, family, and the salon are telling them that every time they come to pay. We’re taking a hair salon example here, so they visited six, seven times, whatever it might be, we help you with all those calculations. But, they come to pay, you scan the key tag in, the staff member says, “Can I have your key tag to scan it?” It pops up, “This client’s entitled to a free product,” so the staff member can see which products they’re entitled to.

Again, this is the expert opinion that they don’t get when they buy it on a high street or a retailer or if they buy it online. The staff member can actually say, “I recommend this for you, Mary,” because they’re the expert, they know their hair. They actually can pick out a product and give it to them, the client does not expect that, so it’s a surprise to the client, they did not expect that today. They’re probably going to tell people about that, they’re probably going to tell their friends, their work colleagues about that because they’ve gone to the till not expecting that. They walk out with something tangible in their hands that they did not expect when they walked in there that day and they’re obviously going to try it.

What I would recommend here as well, I’m using the hair salon example, everyone has shampoo, conditioner, anyone that gets their haircut probably is using that every couple of days, but as a salon, if you can give them something that they’ll actually feel a benefit for in their hair, like a hair mask or something like that, which they actually try out, they feel the benefit of it. Then, when they stop using it, they feel it’s not the same. It’s not as silky as it was or whatever it might be. That’s something they’re going to … they’re probably going to want more of that, so the next time they’re in, there’s a good chance they might buy that from you. The staff member should definitely be saying, “How did you get on with that? Did you like it?” Or, “What didn’t work out for you?” If they do like it, there’s a very good chance that they’re going to spend their money on that. Let’s say a hair mask example, if that’s £15, £16, that could be that client, every six or seven weeks, buying that now. You’re increasing that client’s average spend by £16 or £17.

I know that’s, in an ideal world, what happens, and I know we’re not living in an ideal world. So that point in saying, if you can get 15% or 20% of your clients to do this, we’re not looking for utopia here. We’re not looking for 100% success. If you can get 15% or 20% of your clients doing that, you’re increasing your revenue at the end of the year, but also, all of these clients, you’re not discounting anything for these clients, they’re all spending their regular spend all the time and you’re giving something free further down the line, only when they’ve reached certain thresholds. So it’s far healthier, even if none of these clients actually bought any of this stuff, this is far healthier for your business because you’re not discounting into your regular income. You’re still getting your regular spend all the time. It’s another reason why clients might be coming back as well, nevermind maybe bringing in new people too through the referral part of the system.

A really good loyalty system should do all of those things. It should surprise and delight, it should have a good referral system built into it, and it should be healthy for your business. Once you do the maths in that, when you’re starting it out, again, we’re not looking for utopia here. It’s simple things like, you give out the key tags, all your staff members know what to say to clients, they know to ask, “Have you got your key tag?” and will go from there. You don’t need to have a script really, you just need to ask that question and say, “Oh, by the way, you know if you buy products, certain types of products, if you recommend a friend, you actually get 100 bonus points.” That’s all anybody needs to do. And scan that key tag in every time somebody comes to pay. When they reach a reward stage, the system itself, a good system will show you or recommend what they should have based on services and treatments and products that they’ve never tried before.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, and then just to wrap it all up, on top of what you’ve talked about there, it removes away the discount and tries the new experiences. For the salon owner and the staff themselves then it also offers benefits. If someone comes in the salon to have a tag, all you have to do is scan their tag and you’ve got their whole history, their name, their booking history, how they like their tea, anything like that. So it streamlines that process and it makes it look like you remember every single client that comes in, even if you’ve got 2,500 clients in your books. You scan that card, your clients don’t know that. Another one then it offers, you can reward points for anything. If someone sends a before and after picture, you can reward them points, if someone checks into your salon online, you can reward them points. You can set up your own parameters of how clients get points. But, that’s your whole afters, your clients are now engaging with you online outside of the salon because they want to claim more points. Their friends are seeing this, they want to get on board.

And then, just the final thing we wanted to brush off because we have had a couple of salon owners ask this about it when we were doing the gift cards and stuff. The best way with those Treat Cards is, for an example, on the Saturday, you know you’re going to be flat out on a Saturday, try to move anyone that’s going to claim a Treat Card experience or product away from the Saturday. Like Barry said, encourage, add value to the experience. Maybe encourage them to come in when you’re quieter during the week. You’re giving them their new experience, and you’re giving them that little bit extra on top of it as well.

Barry Quinn: Yeah. That goes down, I suppose, to… I’ll finish up here as well, but the terms and conditions. The salon is in full control of anything that happens within… The loyalty system, or as our version is called a TreatCard; the salon has full control. At the end of the day, you’re going to be offering either a discount, which we definitely don’t recommend that you do. If that’s what you’re doing at the moment, if that’s what you’re currently doing, or if you’re using the likes of our program, the Treat Card program, the salon’s in full control, and they set the terms and conditions. Generally, if you keep that simple and it could be three or four simple conditions, that will help you manage the system even better. I’ve seen what lots of salons have done, is one of their terms and conditions is, “Rewards are available Monday to Friday,” or Monday to Thursday in some cases, I’ve seen that. That can be one of your stipulations when running the system.

You just need to be vigilant with that, and all the staff members need to know what those terms and conditions are, but if that’s the case, you’ve got somebody ringing up on a Wednesday saying, “I want to book my cut and color in for Saturday,” the staff member can actually use that as an opportunity to maybe fill the white spaces on Thursday or Friday by saying, “Mary, while you’re in, you’re actually entitled to free treat from us. They are only available Monday to Friday. There’s actually a slot of Thursday evening or Friday at 6:00, I can book you in there.” So you’re actually booking up your white spaces earlier in the week, and then you’re freeing up, which is traditionally a busy day for salons, is the Saturday, you’ve another space there, and someone else might fill in there.

That’s a management thing, that’s something, once you’ve set out your terms and conditions, and that’s my final point basically, deliver on what you promise. If you need to… When going with a loyalty system, set your vision out from the very beginning and that is something that obviously the Grow Team in Phorest can help you do. Set out what your vision is, and we can help you with that, set your terms and conditions, we can help you with that, and then actually deliver on what you’re promising. There’s nothing more deflating; there’s nothing that’s not going to actually influence people and maybe influence them to be disloyal if you don’t deliver on what you promise. This has certainly happened to me.

Even simple things like, I’ve got a loyalty card for different establishments, and if they don’t ask me for my card sometimes, I don’t get my points. They’re telling me all these great things when they give me the card when I originally sign up or what I’m included in, and then they don’t deliver on it. A lot of people think loyalty systems are a con because of that very reason. That’s happened to me numerous times. I’m sure happened to lots of people that are listening to this today. So, deliver on what you promise and set out what it is that you’re going to do, and once you’re clear with that vision and your staff members are really clear on it as well, it will run itself, and that’s why you need to do your homework at the very beginning. Obviously, with the TreatCard, we can recommend because we’ve got over 2,000 salons that have used this over the last eight years, we’ve nearly 2.5 million end users, which must make us one of the biggest loyalty programs in Europe, if not the world.

We’ve seen what people have done right and have done wrong in the past through helping them out with this stuff. Once you have a clear vision of how it is at the beginning, and you’ve three or four steps, “This is how it works,” it will run itself. And don’t be afraid to give those rewards away. If clients have built them up, they’ve built them up because they’ve spent enough money. Some people sometimes get intimidated with that, but once you’ve done your homework at the beginning and you’ve actually done the maths, I’ve said that a few times today, once you’ve done that at the beginning, your business is safe. You’re not going to be giving away days of free stuff because they have to spend regular money on their regular appointment with it as well. They have to spend a certain threshold to ever get there, and they’ll only be rewarded with stuff they never had before.

So, don’t be intimidated by that, give it away because when you do that, you actually increase your chances of an increase in revenue because you’re delivering on what you’ve promised and people will buy into that, and that’s what’s going to be invaluable for the growth of your salons.

Killian Vigna: Those points are completely bespoke. I think the average we recommend is £1 or €1 per point, but it could take up to a couple of hundred points to claim a product or service. Like Barry said, don’t worry that you’re giving this on and it’s going to eat into your bottom end or anything. It’s not really because they’ve spent a couple of hundred quid to actually achieve that, or receive that.

Barry Quinn: Have faith and believe in what you’re setting out because typically speaking, what we’d recommend is, it’s roughly about 7% is what you’re giving back, and that’s 7% of the sale price of your treatments or your services or your products. So, if you’ve got something that’s worth £40, I’m going to trip myself up here, because maths ain’t my strong point … No, but if you’ve got-

Killian Vigna: That’s why I said to pound, euro.

Barry Quinn: But if you’ve got something, a product even that’s worth £20. Basically, they will have to spend a certain amount of money, and when you give that away, it’s basically equating to about 7% of their spend. They’ll have to have spent hundreds of pounds before they get to that stage which might be four or five or six visits, that’s going on something that’s £20. Obviously, if you’ve got something that’s £8, £9, £10, it’s a little bit different. It’s a little bit less, but it’s all based on their spend. They will only ever be rewarded when they’ve spent a certain amount of money, and the salon is covered. That’s why we get it right from the off and everything kind of looks after itself.

Killian Vigna: That’s absolutely brilliant, Barry. We’re going to wrap it up on that because I don’t think we can say any more on it. Yeah, so for Phorest clients, you can, if you want help with any Treat Card campaigns or even the best way to set up your Treat Card, just get into contact with any of the members of Grow Team, the loyalty advisors.

Barry, that’s fantastic. Thanks a million.

Barry Quinn: Thanks a million, lads.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Thanks so much.

Killian Vigna: Have a great one.

Barry Quinn: Have a good one.

Killian Vigna: So, now we’re joined by the Grow Team SMS advisor Luke Doolin. He’s not new to the show; he’s been on it before when he’s talked about SMS marketing being launched over in America. But Luke also takes care of some email campaigns as well, and why we’re bringing him onto the show today is because I know we’ve been talking about it for the last few weeks, but as we always say, it takes four to six weeks to create any campaign, and we’ve got the Valentine’s coming up. So, Luke’s been helping with a lot of our clients by creating SMS and email templates. The reason we wanted to bring him in is because, Luke, you know yourself, Valentine’s is all about treating your significant other and stuff like that. We wanted you to talk about some ideas that you could do as opposed to whole… if you’re not a relationship, so don’t be alienating your clients.

Luke Doolin: I suppose one of the main things what we’re seeing people doing in the salons, I’m doing quite a lot of is, “Treat yourself this Valentine’s Day.” They’re not going with the couple side of things, they’ve gone with, “Treat yourself.”

Killian Vigna: Yeah.

Luke Doolin: They are putting a Valentine’s twist to it though, so the offers that they’ve seemed to be coming up is, if you book any hair treatment this month, you will receive a free glass of prosecco or a free-

Killian Vigna: Free bottle of prosecco.

Luke Doolin: Free chocolate or something like that, so they’re kind of putting a Valentine’s day twist on it, but still, tailor just towards one person.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Toward one person, yeah.

Luke Doolin: Now, that is kind of working out quite well. We’ve seen salons in London; there’s a salon there, I’ve just checked there, sent it out there on Thursday and tailored it just towards that type of people. They spent about £70 for about 1,000 messages sent out, and they brought in about £900. So they made a huge amount of money by doing this type of thing.

Killian Vigna: And that’s just a once off.

Luke Doolin: That’s a once off.

Killian Vigna: That’s down to the targeting and the filtering. It wasn’t just a batch SMS.

Luke Doolin: These guys have about 5,000 clients, so they actually just went in and filtered it down by category of what type of treatments they’ve previously done or anything like that at all, and they’ve broke it down to 1,000 people. They made a huge amount of money on that anyway. One of the other kind of things we’re seeing is that people are going around products now. They’re still using a, “Treat yourself,” but they’re using products. So, they’re not really-

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Promoting the treatment much, but more so build a package of products.

Luke Doolin: Exactly, yeah. Like a Valentine’s package, so, “Treat yourself to our Valentine’s package,” and they have a list of products together and it might be for £50 or something, €50. It’s pushing treating yourself rather than buying something for somebody.

Killian Vigna: A bit like little hamper packages or something like that.

Luke Doolin: Exactly, yeah. They’re the two that we’re finding, getting away from the couple side of things, that seems to be working out quite well. Now, the other thing we are seeing a lot of is if you do want to get on the couples’ side of things, is the couple packages. That is huge at the minute. Now, it’s not very hard to do.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: And I suppose they’re even bigger in the spa industry.

Luke Doolin: Exactly. Exactly, yeah.

Killian Vigna: A “you and me” deal.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah.

Luke Doolin: What they’re basically saying is, “Couple’s massage with prosecco and chocolates.” All you’re doing is adding two extra little things, and it makes it more romantic or something as well. But, that seems to be quite successful, people are using that quite a lot.

Killian Vigna: It’s not even like you’re coming with new treatments or anything. It’s what you already have, but this might go well for this day.

Luke Doolin: That’s all it is.

Killian Vigna: It’s repackaging what you already have.

Luke Doolin: Valentine’s day is just another excuse to reach out to your clients and try to get more bookings. You don’t need to be coming up with these amazing ideas just for Valentine’s day. It’s just another excuse for you to reach out to them. With the email template that was uploaded, Valentine’s day template, salons seemed to love that. It’s gone very, very well. It’s very, very easy to use and people are putting their own offers into it as well. If you haven’t looked at that, definitely check that out as well. The SMS then, we’ll find the salons will relate their SMS very well to their email. Whatever content you have put in your email, do relate your SMS around that as well.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Right, yeah.

Killian Vigna: So that’s your consistency. It’s the same with if it’s online. Any campaigns, make sure it reiterates itself through all channels.

Luke Doolin: Exactly, yeah. Now, we are finding though, with SMS, especially for this week it’s so busy, we definitely recommend, people are putting expiry dates on their text messages and stuff as well. I would recommend to push that expiry date out until the 19th. We were thinking about this earlier on today. Some people have done a special offer up until Valentine’s Day, but if you’re doing, “Treat yourself,” people might be going out the following weekend.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, because not everybody’s necessarily going to be available on the 14th.

Luke Doolin: Exactly.

Killian Vigna: Oh yeah, because Valentine’s is Tuesday, yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: And then you can capitalise and try and put book ins in further down the week where it might be a little quieter anyway.

Luke Doolin: Exactly. Exactly, yeah. Again, it’s going back to the point of, Valentine’s day is just another excuse to reach out. You don’t need to limit yourself just to Valentine’s Day, the special offer finishes. Now, we would recommend, I suppose we were looking at it, but try to get it out before Friday this week, so you’re not doing a last minute tactic. People have probably-

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Because people have been targeted, probably, by loads of other places.

Luke Doolin: Exactly. Exactly. I’ve already got a thing, four emails for flowers for your girlfriend. It’s pushing me-

Killian Vigna: Ordered them yet?

Luke Doolin: No, I haven’t actually. I need the last minute text message, but it’s probably going to be too late to go by Friday or Saturday, so you’d want to get the message out early.

Killian Vigna: And just like you wanted to kind of catch on to what you said about yourself receiving four emails for flowers, you can do that through your Facebook ads and even creating a post and boosting it. Don’t just market to your client base because they’re not always going to buy for themselves. Market towards the males.

Luke Doolin: Yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: And you also have your content already. He’s just repurposing it to another audience.

Killian Vigna: Exactly. All you’re doing is, you’re just clicking the filter for males. So, instead of sending your ad, so just females see it, it’s males see it. If you’re in a barber shop, have that ad filter for females because you want to get it for the clients who are partners of your clients. So the people who are partners of your clients.

Luke Doolin: Exactly. There is a cool filter as well.

Killian Vigna: It’s a tongue twister.

Luke Doolin: You got it out on the end. There is a cool filter that you can actually tag people who have purchased a gift card before. That could be a cool one. I know it’s not the most romantic idea to do, but you can go into the advanced filters, and I think it’s called “gift card expiry”. That will generate anyone who’s bought a gift card from you previously. You could target them people with gift cards and do something around that. But again, it’s not the most romantic thing, so don’t say Phorest told you to buy a gift card.

Killian Vigna: Hang on now, I’ve been doing that, whatever their own gift cards. No, but they are great for the last minute shopper, so did discuss, 70% of people that buy gift cards are people who leave shopping to the very last minute. So a little gift card ad. You guys are the artists yourself, create a nice photo on Instagram, a couple of glasses of prosecco, dress up the scene, don’t just take a snap shot of any old image and throw it up.

Luke Doolin: Make it dressy, make it nice. Make it, I suppose a couple of hearts, petals, red. Red, obviously. Zoe has marketing kits on that stuff anyway that you can already download.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, it’s all ready to download on the blog, so you can go check that out. It’s February marketing ideas or marketing tool kit if you search that.

Killian Vigna: Luke, that’s been brilliant. We just wanted to get you in, like I said, at the start because of Valetine’s, it’s not all about just couples and relationships and stuff. You’ve got to think of the other guys.

Luke Doolin: If anyone does need anything at all, they can… I’m sure you’re going to send an email after, they can email us in, and we can come up with templates for you and send them out as well, but the sooner, the better. So don’t miss out before.

Killian Vigna: Just get in contact with a member of the Grow Team and those guys will sort you out no problem. Listen, Luke, it’s been a pleasure. Thanks a million.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Thanks a million.

Luke Doolin: Thank you very much. Thanks a lot.

Killian Vigna: So, I suppose, just to finish off the show, we’re going to do, as always, upcoming webinars. Zoe, I believe this is your newest webinar, isn’t it?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yes, exactly, so it’s going on today at 3:00 p.m. UK, Ireland time and 10:00 a.m. US Eastern Time. It is the salon retailing master class. We actually have close to 300 people registered for it, so that should be interesting.

Killian Vigna: Probably our most popular webinar after the Snapchat, is it?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, I think it was the second highest number, or even the first highest number, possibly.

Killian Vigna: So, it’s obviously anticipated. Get registering for that one. You can-

Zoe Belisle-Springer: It’s coming up soon.

Killian Vigna: You can register through the Facebook, can’t you?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. There’s an event on Facebook available, and if you click in the ticket section of it, basically, it brings you to the registration link. It is free, so don’t worry.

Killian Vigna: Cool.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: But yeah.

Killian Vigna: So, just to recap the show, we’ve had Barry coming in talking about why you should get a loyalty program in place in your salon, not just like-

Zoe Belisle-Springer: How to do it as well.

Killian Vigna: How to do it. Don’t just replicate coffee shops. We’ve also had Luke coming in talking about SMS and email Valentine’s ideas.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: And we were chatting about that little blog, the hair removal blog.

Killian Vigna: I was just getting there, just getting there. We have loads of information. So we had the hair removal blog, for the waxing and stuff like that, and then the upcoming webinars.

As always, guys, thanks for tuning in. If you want to rate or leave some feedback or maybe get involved in the show, leave some feedback, and we can see what we can do.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: We’ll get back to you, yeah, exactly.

Killian Vigna: The show, as always, it’s done for you, so let us know what you want to hear.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: All right. So, thanks for tuning in this week and we’ll catch you next Monday.

Killian Vigna: All the best.

Thanks for reading!

#LetsGrow


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Podcast transcription by Rev.com