The Salon Owners Podcast: Phorest FM Episode 51 (Black Friday Campaigns)

phorest fm episode 51

Welcome to the Salon Owner’s Podcast, Phorest FM Episode 51. 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 51

As usual, our mid-month episodes are dedicated to discussing a few popular blogs and occasionally, having Phorest staff on the show. For this week’s episode, Killian and Zoe review some industry-specific Black Friday campaigns, some of the best social media automation tools out there and give an overview of guest contributor Gloria Murray’s salon guide to surviving a tax inspection.

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Transcript

Killian Vigna: Welcome to the Phorest FM podcast, episode 51. I’m Killian Vigna.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: I’m Zoe Belisle-Springer.

Killian Vigna: This week, we take you through our mid month’s blogs.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: We’ll walk you through some tried and tested salon Black Friday campaigns you can steal, the best social media automation tools, and Gloria Murray’s guide to surviving a tax inspection. As always, we top off the show with our upcoming Phorest Academy webinars.

Killian Vigna: 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. How are you doing, Zoe?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Very well. Very well. How are you?

Killian Vigna: I’m good now, yeah. So, episode 51. Last week was our 50th episode. We did a little shout out on Instagram. We thanked everyone for… I suppose… because last month we actually-

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Continued support.

Killian Vigna: Yeah. Continued support, and we nearly doubled our listenership last month as well.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: We did actually double it. Yeah.

Killian Vigna: I think we went from… up to 11,000.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: We went from 6,000 something to a little over 11,000, yeah, in a month.

Killian Vigna: Yeah. And for our 50th episode, we had Michelle Bolger, which was another spike then, in traffic as well.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah.

Killian Vigna: Michelle Bolger was covering topics like-

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Holiday entitlement, maternity leave, freedom of speech on social media. Facebook especially.

Killian Vigna: That was an interesting one, because that was actually something we’d come across ourselves on Facebook, and we thought, “Hm. How do we explain this one?” So, no better person, yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. It was a really great episode. It was, probably, our longest ever, but really well worth it, because it just sums up everything you need to know about these really tough topics that are very law heavy, usually.

Killian Vigna: There was no way we could break that down to 40 minutes.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: No, impossible.

Killian Vigna: Three heavy topics, done in an hour and a half, but easily digestible because that’s what’s so good about Michelle Bolger, is she takes these complex, I suppose, topics, and just breaks it down so simply. So easy. So, that brings us on, then, to our mid-month blogs.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yes, so we actually had a blog yesterday going out, and I was just looking at the stats on our email campaign for it. It was probably the most opened already in the month: Tried and Tested Salon Black Friday Campaigns You Can Steal.

How I went about this. So, essentially, I was looking at Black Friday campaigns on the web, and the… Most blogs you’ll see are gathering data from big retail stores. You’ll have huge electronic companies as well. But you really don’t have anything that relates specifically to the salon and spa industry.

Killian Vigna: I remember going through this issue myself, last year because we were trying to do a webinar, and it was all the big, massive… Accenture was one, and stuff like that. It just was not relatable to the salon industry at all. It was great if you were, was it FCMGs, or if you’re big tech companies, or even if you’re software and app companies. That’s kind of what they all specialize around. You had to do a bit more digging than I did.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, I did, but in fairness, I did have help from our Grow team, Luke Doolin. I’ll give him a little shout out her because he actually went through Black Friday campaigns that were sent out last year, within our client database. Now, obviously, on the blog, for confidentiality reasons, we’ve blocked out all names, and stuff like that, but we did create, well, replicated the message, essentially, of what was sent, how many SMSs were sent for that message, what it cost to send it, and the revenue generated from it. It gives you an idea of how powerful the SMS message can be for a Black Friday Campaign, but it also gives you an idea of what can work, in terms of the message, and why it works.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, and he’d only just done webinars about this back in September, as well. The whole idea is it’s your most, I suppose, your most successful marketing channel, because it has the highest return on investment, because yes, it does cost you a little bit, but the return you get is unbelievable. I think it’s around 22%, or it’s 21% here.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: 22% on average, but in between those three messages in particular that were sent, it came around to 21%.

Killian Vigna: Yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: So it’s pretty much on it.

Killian Vigna: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Exactly. So what have we got?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: So, one of the messages was, “Out of my way! It’s Black Friday. Book any three treatments on November 24th at The Salon Name, and get the cheapest free. To be used in January.” Then you add in the online booking link, and an opt-out option.

Now, this works because if I’m putting myself in the client’s shoes, and I get this SMS, I’ll see, “Oh, book any three treatments, and I get the cheapest free?” to me, it’s a deal. But in reality, when you look at it from your point of view in the salon, you’re actually filling in your appointment book in January as well, because that treatment can only be redeemed in January. You’re actually creating revenue at the same time.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, because January is that slower time of the year. You know you’re going to be busy in December, so your marketing that you’re doing now is to finish off what’s left in December. Most of you are probably already starting to fill up. But it’s taking advantage of that busy period, and trying to, I suppose, boomerang them back in.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. Exactly.

Killian Vigna: You’ve got three of the five golden rules we have there. You offer value, include your booking link, and clear and concise.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: There you go. And then, second one, we had the kind of message that goes, “Buy a voucher, get an additional 10% on it.” That particular said last year, “The pre-Black Friday sale has begun at The Salon Name. Purchase a voucher on November 24th and receive 10% extra free on it.” Again, they put in the condition that this voucher has to be used in January. Same amount of SMS sent. Just for instance, on this one, 950. It cost them 57 euros, and they got 1,482 euros out of it.

Killian Vigna: What I like about this one is it’s kind of focused on the gift cards, and that was the webinar that I was doing last year. Did a lot of digging in to the gift cards, and actually managed to find a lot in the salon industry. The salon industry is one of the biggest industries for gift cards.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yes.

Killian Vigna: This one, we have a card at the moment, it’s like gold dust. It’s the Attitude of Gratitude. That’s where we were talking about if you come in in December, get a treatment, you’ll get a gift card. That gift card has what? 5, 10, 15 euros on it, but it’s only redeemable in January if you have a minimum spend. Which means they’re coming back in January, but they still have to spend a minimum of 50, 60, 70 quid, and they’re getting an extra few quid.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, and the interesting thing about gift cards, actually, is that, as you said, they are the most requested gift around the holiday period. But what happens with gift cards is that on average, 70% of the people who use the gift cards in the salon will actually end up spending about 20% extra of their own money.

Killian Vigna: Easy, yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: On top of that gift card.

Killian Vigna: I think the stats I got from retail was a minimum spend of 50% back, because no one… You’re not going to feel like a cheapskate. The way you’re going to look at it is, “I have 50 euro gift card, so I can get a 100 quid product for 50 euros.”

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Exactly. Yeah.

Killian Vigna: That’s how people look at it. They don’t go, “I have a 50 euro gift card. What can I get for 50 euros?” They’re always looking for that higher value, because now they’re getting it at a really good cost.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: So, that’s a really, really good one. Obviously, in this particular case, for the SMS, the salon was offering an extra 10%, so if you bought… Say, for instance, Killian, you came in and you bought a 100 euro voucher, me, as a salon owner, I’d add an extra 10%, so an extra 10 euros on the card for you, but that card is only redeemable in January, again, because you want to create some sort of ‘busy-ness’ in the salon then.

Killian Vigna: Yeah. Exactly. Be smart about it. Put a minimum spend on it to redeem that card.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Oh, yeah. Absolutely. I can’t stress this enough, but do put your conditions in, because if you don’t, say, for instance, say it can only be used in January, people are going to use it on the same day, and you’re not going to make any money out of it in the end.

Killian Vigna: Yeah. I think the ones we have, there’s two different dates. I think one till the end of January, and then somewhere kind of the first week of February, just to get that little bit extra. But whatever days you choose, make sure it’s clear, it’s clear on the card when you give that to the customer.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Now, if we move on to our third one, that comes straight from the industry, from successful campaigns from last year, this one was more about packages. The message was, “It’s here. The City Salon Black Friday…” Obviously City Salon is a fictional name.

Killian Vigna: The Phorest salon that’s not a salon.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. “The City Salon Black Friday Relaxation Package is back. Manicure, facial, back massage, only X amount of euros. Book now with the booking link,” opt out again. Because packages are actually often more accessible for people to buy into, especially if you’re giving it as a gift. Who wouldn’t want a massage with a facial, or with something else?

Killian Vigna: Christmas is known for bundles. If you think deodorant sets, things like those perfume sets, they’re all just repackaged with a little ribbon around them. It’s a gift box now opposed to it’s a gift. That’s the same with your treatments. Rather than come in, get a back massage, come in and, I suppose, you know your treatments best. What can you put together that someone’s going to look at that and go, “Wow. That’s a day,” or something, or a half day, something like that.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Also, in this one, what I want to mention before moving on, is that because they say the relaxation package is back, it also adds scarcity to the message, because it’s not going to last forever. That package is not going to be there indefinitely on the website.

Killian Vigna: Limited time only, yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah.

Killian Vigna: So urgency, that’s it.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: That was a really slick way of doing it, without saying, “Act fast,” or, “Book now,” that kind of style.

Killian Vigna: We have those five golden rules in the SMS marketing game plan. That’s free to download. Go onto the blog. You’ve got your five golden rules personalized. Now, I know those weren’t personalized, but that’s because of the data… Not data protection, but we had to take the names and stuff out. So, you’ve got personalized. Keep it clear and concise. Remember, you’ve only got 160 characters to work with. Include a call to action, which is your online booking link. If you don’t have online booking, you can include a phone number, but make sure you have a voicemail set up in case they can’t get in. Then you’ve got your urgency, and then the fifth one is-

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Your opt-out.

Killian Vigna: Your opt-out. Always include your opt-out.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. If we move on, then, onto email campaigns, this time, for email campaigns, I didn’t actually go into past campaigns that were sent through Phorest. I actually went out and branched out of the industry completely, because there was these two campaigns that I thought were really, really cool, and really easy to apply to our industry anyways.

There’s this campaign by Everlane, and they said essentially that for the past two years, they had chosen to shut down the site on Black Friday. They wanted to encourage more thoughtful consumption. But that particular year, they actually-

Killian Vigna: Wanted to do more.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. They wanted to do more. They gave literally all their profits towards a certain… For them, it was building awareness about their workers in China, and the factory in China, and stuff like that.

Killian Vigna: While most people try to hide that, they’re open about it. They’re trying to do something about it, too.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Exactly. So, they set up the goal. They said what their goal was in the email, and then asked their clients to help them achieve that goal. That worked really well, because… This email stood out to people because it wasn’t about, “Spend all your money on this.” It’s actually, “Help people in need.”

Killian Vigna: Yeah. I know we’ve talked about it a few times, we’ve chosen a small charity just around the corner, because think about it. How much money are you actually going to generate that you can give to charity? Probably it’s going to be a couple hundred quid. The big organizations aren’t going to see that, so think of someone smaller in your community. The guy that’s next door. That few hundred quit, that’s going to make a massive impact for those guys, and it’s not going to be wasted on admin to the bigger guys who get funding as well. They actually get grants, and stuff like that.

Yeah, no, that’s a really good one there. And we have one more email, then?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, so this one was from Store Q-

Killian Vigna: I don’t think I’ve ever heard these names.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: But it doesn’t matter, because it was just basically a screenshot of the email. This one, what they did was, “We’re celebrating Black Friday by slipping a free blank tank…” So, obviously, they do clothes, “… on all orders over $75.” Essentially, what they’re doing here is putting a minimum price, a minimum spend on the order, and then giving their clients a gift on that day. What that encourages is increasing the average spend of your client. You can easily apply that to your business. I think you had a few ideas around that as well.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, no, I was actually just chatting to you about it earlier, because… Without going into names, just this online protein supplement store that everyone at work uses here, they all seem to go to it, they actually have a similar idea like that. It is actually quite clever. Your order, usually, they know what their customers spend. It’s usually one tub of protein, which kind of comes out about 49 euros, what it is. But they actually have, if you spend 50 euro, you’ll get a free gift. That free gift is usually to the value of 3 or 4 euro. But there’s no product that you can buy for a euro, so you end up spending an extra 5 euro to get a free gift for 3 euro, which means your order has now gone up and increased your revenue. It’s something like that. It’s just kind of like that 50 euro, and then get a free gift, but the free gift will only be a couple of euro. Again-

Zoe Belisle-Springer: You have to be smart with it. You can’t give out a gift that’s worth 100 euros either.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, so try and pull some reports there. See what your most popular service is around that time. What is the value of that service? Just add a small increment, then, as your redemption value.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. That was about it for that blog, to be honest. The other sidenote that I have, is actually when I was doing this research, it turns out that the most popular day for Black Friday deals are actually before Black Friday. Most companies are actually upstaging the Black Friday day itself. A couple of years back, Black Friday, the only deals you could get was on the actual Black Friday day. Now it’s actually starting earlier and earlier, so don’t be afraid to even start advertising it a week in advance.

Killian Vigna: So, it’s essentially turned into Black Week, nearly.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Almost.

Killian Vigna: Yeah. Yeah, get on board that.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. Next, the best social media automation tools.

Killian Vigna: Oh, there’s also an email marketing game plan that you can download for that one, too. That’s got some more tips, and tricks, and stuff. They’re only a couple of pages long, and they’re free.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: They’re free. So, yes. Automation tools.

Killian Vigna: This is your element here.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: This is my element, yeah.

Killian Vigna: The first one’s Zoe’s best friend.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: I call him Edgar.

Killian Vigna: Meet Edgar.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, no, it is actually called MeetEdgar. What it is-

Killian Vigna: Thought you were going to say, “It is actually my best friend.”

Zoe Belisle-Springer: … Almost. No, but it is like having your personal assistant. What MeetEdgar does is, it’s essentially a library of your content. Every time you create a new post, it saves it into a library, and reuses your content on the schedule that you assign it to.

Killian Vigna: So it’s the same content being reused again, is it?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, it’s repurposing your content.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, repurposing.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: But obviously you can put in new content. I put in new content every day in it, but eventually, say, for instance, I have to take a sick day, and I can’t actually schedule my social media, or I can’t be there to post an update for Phorest, MeetEdgar has a schedule, and will generate a queue automatically from the content that I’ve previously added to that library. On that day, even if I’m not there, it’ll just reuse content that has already been published. But we all know on social media now, you’ll post an update, and only 2% of your existing fan base will actually see it, so it’s okay to republish it anyways.

Killian Vigna: Because of those Facebook ads.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah.

Killian Vigna: It’s a big marketing agency itself. So, reposting the post, will it pick the most popular past posts, or will it just do anything in the queue?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, it’ll usually go for your best-performing ones. Say, for instance, you made a post last week. It won’t republish that post last week. It’ll actually go into a rotation.

Killian Vigna: So it’s smart enough… Yeah. Okay.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: It’s very, very smart. That’s one of my favourite ones. Now, it may not be accessible to everyone, because there’s no free plan about this one. It is $49 per month. You have to commit to that if you’re looking into social media automation tools.

Now, we do have another suggestion, which is Later, and Later is probably one of the most user-friendly platforms for scheduling Instagram posts. I actually did a post on this in my very first three months of working for Phorest. It was a step-by-step guide on how to use it. That’s also linked in that article that I just wrote this week.

Now, Later helps you basically bulk upload photos, videos, anything that you want to post to Instagram. Again, works the same way as Meet Edgar. You set up a calendar, a schedule. You can preview what it’s going to look like on Instagram, and then it’ll send you a notification when the time is right to post it. All you have to do is two clicks. It’ll save your caption, and just push everything to Instagram.

Killian Vigna: So you’re saying it’s optimized for Instagram. Is that just because of the image size, is it?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: No, it’s actually because it actually was called another name initially, and it was really just for Instagram. Now they’ve rebranded, I want to say about a year and a half ago now. They’ve rebranded, called themselves Later, and they also do the scheduling for Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter.

Killian Vigna: Okay, so that’s one for all platforms, then?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. It is still recognized as the most used one for Instagram, though.

Killian Vigna: Yeah. Cool.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Now, the next one is Hootsuite.

Killian Vigna: That’s a bit of a bigger product now, isn’t it?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, it is. It can be very complex. It is one that maybe will take a little more time to get familiar with.

Killian Vigna: Yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: I suppose if you’re very new to all this social media stuff, and you don’t really know where to start, it might not be the right platform for you.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, because I think I’ve tried this one myself. The free plan. It can be overwhelming at first, but it’s like anything. Once you get used to it, you get going to it. Set a bit of time aside.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. Some people in salons have social media managers anyway, so that might be an option.

Killian Vigna: So what’s Hootsuite now? Is this-

Zoe Belisle-Springer: So, again, this is another tool to be able to manage everything. Facebook Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, Instagram, WordPress. They have links to other platforms as well. It is probably the biggest one. You can get analytics. You can schedule your updates. You can send private messages to targeted audiences.

Killian Vigna: So it’s like using your actual profiles, but within another tool.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, in one big dashboard.

Killian Vigna: Cool.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. Then, Buffer. Buffer is quite similar to MeetEdgar, without the repurposing part of it. Again, schedule posts, track your results, manage all your accounts from one dashboard. They say it: “Choose the dates and times you want to publish to each account. Create social media posts when you have time, and Buffer will automatically share them according to your schedule.” It is very similar to MeetEdgar, except it won’t just repurpose your content.

Killian Vigna: Am I right in saying, with Buffer, you can actually get a plug-in in Chrome? If you’re reading an article, or a post, or something like that online, you can just click that button, and let Buffer straight to-

Zoe Belisle-Springer: I believe so.

Killian Vigna: Straight to Facebook. That’s a nice handy one. You’re not having to copy and paste a link, and then rewrite a status. It’ll essentially do it for you, and, I suppose, buffer it next.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. The next one is really interesting. It’s called Crowdfire, and it’ll probably be the one that’ll be the most interesting for many salon owners, because if you’re not really used to doing all that social media marketing, Crowdfire is essentially… It starts off with a bot. You sign up for the account with either Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, and the bot will actually try and get to know you, get to know your marketing objectives, what are you trying to get out of your posts, what are your targets, things like that. Then, once he gets to know you, he’ll suggest concrete actions to do every day. It’ll send you a notification. “Oh, are you stuck for this today? Try this.”

Killian Vigna: That’s pretty cool. I haven’t actually heard of this one. Is this a new tool so, or has it been around a while?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: It’s been around for a few years. It was very different a few years ago. I think they’ve done a lot of development work in the recent years, especially with the bots. You didn’t have many bots back in the days anyway. That’s definitely something quite new.

Killian Vigna: So it essentially prompts you to do posts, and stuff like that, but then it recommends how to do it and stuff.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Recommends how to do it, and what actions you should do that day to reach your targets.

Killian Vigna: That’s great for … Yeah. That actually sounds great for someone, I suppose if you’re so busy… We know a lot of time, especially now, you’ll find it too busy to actually think of your marketing. It’s something that can get forgotten about, or fall by the side. So, to have something like that to kind of alert you, to go, “We need a post today. We need a post tomorrow. Here’s something…” That’s a pretty great idea, yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, and it’s all very personalized, because the bot has had that conversation with you, and knows what you’re looking for.

Killian Vigna: Yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: The next one, and this is an extra one I put in because it’s just amazing for content curation. It’s called Feedly. I don’t know if you’ve heard about it before. I’ve used it before many times. It’s great. Basically, what you can do is subscribe to these different publications, magazines, blogs, and it just gets all that content into one dashboard so you can just have all your news in one place.

Killian Vigna: It’s more like a curator. It’s creating your own news feed, is it?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, essentially. Yeah.

Killian Vigna: Cool, so it’s like having a Facebook without having to go onto Facebook.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: It’s more-

Killian Vigna: Well, like that news feed, that endless scroll of-

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, that newsfeed is kind of… Yeah. Yeah. I suppose. It’s just way more informative.

Killian Vigna: Genuine content.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. So, that’s about it for the social media tools, but if you are a Phorest Salon Software client, we do have many things that you can use. Client ReConnect is one, for instance. It’s not exactly social media marketing, but it is marketing.

Killian Vigna: Let’s get your clients back in every six weeks rotation. If someone hasn’t come in in six weeks, but they usually do, it’ll send out an outreach message, prompt them to come back in for… It’s like a, “You’re overdue.”

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah.

Killian Vigna: “You’re overdue” message, yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: So, that’s one. Then, you have Online Reputation, which you probably already know about, if you’ve been tuning into the last few Phorest FM episodes. Essentially, what this feature does in our software; it monitors and helps you control what’s being said about you on Google, Facebook, Yelp. It’s all from one clear and clean dashboard. You can reply to reviews straight from that platform as well.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, and anyone who is fairly savvy with, I suppose… Well, you wouldn’t even need to be savvy. Google reviews aren’t your SEO. What your SEO is is how you can get found, up at the top of the page on Google. By having good Google reviews on your business page… I’m saying Google a lot here. I’m pushing a free search [crosstalk 00:23:19]. It actually helps bring your salon up that ranks and that system does it so anyone that leaves you a great review on Facebook, you can go, “Hey, do you want to copy and paste your review into Google?” It’s that simple for you, and that simple for them. Yeah. That’s a big hit here at the moment.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. That’s, again, through Phorest Salon Software. Then, the three last ones that I will mention, I’m not going to go through them in depth, but we do have a Snapchat integration that helps you build a following through Phorest. We also have the Before and After Photos, and then the Salon Selfie, which has also been out for quite a long… I think it’s been since 2014 at the moment.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, it’s been a while now.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: So, again, that’s all on the blog.

Killian Vigna: And those last three are free tools as well.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yes, through Phorest Salon Software.

Killian Vigna: So, moving away from, I suppose, the more fun and flashy blogs to something a bit more serious.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yes. So we had Gloria Murray, our guest contributor that specializes in finances and accounting, and things like that, she wrote us a guide to surviving a tax inspection. It is quite heavy, I suppose, but-

Killian Vigna: It’s always good to know.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Because I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t want to get that letter in the post saying, “We’re going to inspect all of your trails, and things like that.”

Killian Vigna: What is it?  There’s two things that you can be sure about life: death and taxes. So, here’s one of them that we’ll cover today.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, so her tips, essentially, I’m going to break it down real fast.

Killian Vigna: It’ll be a good idea to read the blog.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. Definitely. You need to sit down and actually get your head around it. Her tips are: make sure your bookkeeping is in order. She actually said the best way to come out of a tax investigation smelling of roses is to make sure your bookkeeping is in order from the very start. That’s one.

If you do get that letter saying, “Your business is going to be inspected,” contact your accountant straightaway, because if your accountant is registered as your agent, they’ll also get a letter, but they’ll be in a way better position to understand everything that needs to be done, and everything that needs to be shown to the agents that are doing the inspection, because this inspection could be triggered for various reasons. It could be any discrepancies or anything like that. It could be so many things.

Killian Vigna: And what happens if you don’t have an accountant?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: You’ll have to do everything yourself, unfortunately.

Killian Vigna: Shame.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: No, but you kind of have to look at what’s being asked from you, and simply reply to that, and not go extra. If they ask for anything else extra, then, if you don’t have it on hand, say you’ll come back to them, because you don’t want to dig a hole for yourself, either.

Killian Vigna: I suppose it’s like an interview, isn’t it? It’s the more you tell them, the more questions they can ask you.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah.

Killian Vigna: Think of your taxes as an interview, except you’re on the other end this time.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: The final thing I will mention about this, because I will let you read it online, is make sure you have a separate business account, in terms of bank account, because if you don’t, they will also go through all of your income that’s coming through personal stuff. If your bank account is joined between business and personal, no matter what you want to say to them, they will go through every single income that’s coming into that personal account, which isn’t always great, I suppose. How do you say that, don’t mix business and personal?

Killian Vigna: Don’t mix business and pleasure, yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, so that’s that.

Killian Vigna: So, final thoughts and advice on it?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Make sure your paperwork is well organized.

Killian Vigna: Keep it clean. Keep it clean, and have an accountant on hand.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Oh, and have insurance as well. Tax insurance.

Killian Vigna: That’s always a good one, yeah. For anyone that is looking for, I suppose, a forum that they can look for advice, she actually has a Facebook group here, doesn’t she?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yes.

Killian Vigna: It’s ‘Knowing Your Numbers’ on Facebook.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: The link is in the blog as well. You can join there. We’ll put it in the description as well.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, so if you don’t have an accountant, join that group, and fire your questions in there. They’d only be happy to answer.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Now that we’ve actually covered all those blogs, we’re on to our webinar section.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, so we only actually have one webinar this week, and it’s tomorrow. This one, now, it is for Phorest Salon Software clients. What’s going to be covered is the Salon Growth Series, is the name of it. It’s ‘Boosting Your Online Presence and Attracting New Business’. That’s the whole online reputation thing we were talking about, so it’s comparing what’s more important. It’s word of mouth, marketing more important, or online reviews. I know when someone recommends something, a shop, or a store, or anything, to me the first thing I’m going to do is Google it. What are the first few things I see on Google?

Then, I suppose, why you should have your online reputation, and how to dress it up and make it look well. Just identifying the three key areas you need to position your salon.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: It’s from what time to what time?

Killian Vigna: So that one is from 3:00 PM to 4:00 PM GMT, which is 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM EST.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. That was a mouthful, wasn’t it?

Killian Vigna: It was a mouthful, yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: So, the other one that we have is the Instagram Masterclass, but that’s not this week. It’s actually next week. So, November 20th, so Monday, and this is an hour-long webinar with Chris Brennan. It’s a monthly one. Shows you all the ins and outs of how to manage your Instagram for your business. That’s also from 3:00 PM to 4:00 PM UK/Ireland time, 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM U.S. Eastern time.

So, we’ll leave you on that. We hope you have a wonderful week. We’ll catch you next Monday.

Killian Vigna: All the best.

Thanks for reading!

#LetsGrow

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Podcast transcription by Rev.com