Welcome to the Salon Owner’s Podcast, Phorest FM Episode 2. 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 2

Visual marketing is a crucial component in advertising for a salon. This episode discusses its golden rules, and “do”s and “don’t”s of these types of campaigns. Another topic we speak about is how owners can compose effective press releases. We also have an in-house guest, Phorest’s loyalty manager Justin Fiddy, explain Phorest’s “Attitude of Gratitude” initiative and its benefits.




Killian Vigna: Welcome to the Phorest FM podcast episode two. I’m your host Killian Vigna and today I’m joined by Zoe Belisle-Springer. Today we’re talking about salon vision marketing. It’s the golden rule is to help you stand out. We’ll be talking about the return of Phorest Attitude of Gratitude loyalty scheme from our loyalty manager, Justin Fiddy. We go through effective and simple salon press release tips for best exposure, you can try out, and we’ll talk about our upcoming webinars in the Phorest Academy series.

So, let’s get started. Welcome to our exclusive to clients, Phorest FM podcast. Thanks for tuning in. This week’s podcast is a weekly grind up of our latest marketing tips and tricks for salon owners. What’s been going on in and around Phorest, and what new webinars are taking place.

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, I’m just looking at the timer here. It’s actually 192 hours 20 minutes and 4 seconds since our last podcast.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah absolutely. We completely forgot to turn that one off.

Killian Vigna: We went to have look at our timer to start into the show and realized it was still ticking from last week.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Ah we figured we’d say we’d mention it but yeah.

Killian Vigna: We’re always on the clock here. So, let’s start off with I suppose a few blogs that we’re gonna talk about today, the first one being the salon visual marketing so I suppose the golden rules to help you stand out.

Zoe Belisle-Springer:  Right. So, basically this one was about pretty much anything right. Anything that has to do with visuals. It could be regarding your email campaigns. It could be regarding social media. It could be for posters or anything. It’s just like the best practices to get people more engaged with just an image kind of thing.

So, sometimes it has to do with like, choosing the right colors, or having humans in the picture. As ridiculous as it sounds, it does bring … it does like give a comfort zone to the viewer because you’re like, “Oh I can relate to this person”.

Killian Vigna: So, it’s kind of keeping your post cleaner looking by helping them stand out because, like we’ve talked to a couple of salon owners and we’ve looked at a few at our post. We regularly check out a couple of salons, social media pages, to see how they’re doing. I suppose you’ve heard of the hall trying to stand out from the noise. And by trying to stand out from the noise, you’ve got to get a lot of salon owners creating like these really like vivid wacky images and stuff like that. It’s not always kind of bigger and bolder is it? It’s just simple, clean, effective.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, and sometimes you know, it doesn’t have to be packed with so many things in that same image. You have to think about your concept first, so you have to find something … but you have to think like, you have to figure out your concept and then go from there, and choose, “Okay, I’m gonna try this image out”. You can try more than one and just figure out, well okay, let’s try with just my team. Which one appeals more to you kind of thing. You can get like a feel for it.

Then there’s some colors that evoke some different emotions, like I’m sure the green; like green evokes echo friendly and like, yeah, all kinds of stuff like that. So, it’s just like playing with that kind of psychology of like, color and how we process visuals basically.

Killian Vigna: Like you just said there, the beauty about marketing, and like your social media and stuff, everything is always trial and error. So, it’s very rarely, oh that campaign failed. It’s, okay well what didn’t work and what can we change? So, like you said about creating … so have a goal in mind then start creating your content and your images there. But always share it out to a few of your colleagues, staff members, stuff like that, to try and get a vote nearly, on which is the best one. Don’t just create one image or one post and throw it out there hoping for the best. You should always what we call AB testing, so compare one campaign with another campaign and split up your demographic.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Oh yeah definitely, and then like just keep track of what worked and what didn’t. Write it down. In that way next time you decide to do a similar campaign then you remember what worked a year ago you know.

Killian Vigna: Exactly. Like record everything and like I said, don’t beat yourself up if something doesn’t work one day. It could just be a small minor tweak. Maybe the headline of it or something to do with like a detail in the image. Just on that image now, you were saying a good example of an image on social media is one with a real person in it. We actually discussed this earlier in a webinar we did a few days ago, so basically we wanted to draw a client’s focus to the book now button on the social media.

How we did this was, we actually had created an image where there was a woman looking down. So, in the image it was a woman, and you could see her eye line was actually looking down towards the button so it’s all kinda …

Zoe Belisle-Springer:  Yeah cause then you look at the person and the person’s like looking somewhere else, and you’re like, “Where’s she looking?”

Killian Vigna: We’re curious creatures. We’re always trying to find out what other people are doing, what they’re up to, and what they’re looking at. It’s what we called eye tracking. So, it’s following that eye line.

Zoe Belisle-Springer:  Even more than that. Just like someone could be looking peaceful and calm and it’s just going to make you feel calm as well, because you can relate top an experience you’ve had previously and made you feel that way.

Killian Vigna: Exactly.

Zoe Belisle-Springer:  So, it’s basically just that kind of stuff and you can find it all the Phorest.com/blog.

Killian Vigna: Yeah and like Zoe every week creates some really good images that get sent out you get in your emails and you can see through the blogs, they’re like little image kits that you can download. But we recommend that if you were to go out and get your own images, we always recommend taking your own photos. We understand a lot of you are quite arty and creative. So we recommend you go out and try and create your own images, take your own photos because the stock images they are great but they get over used don’t they?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Oh yeah they do definitely.

Killian Vigna: They tend to just kind of wear out. So, just on that note then, we’re gonna talk about how to write irresistible, and simple salon press releases because it’s not like social media, but it’s all kind of curating your content in a fine way.

Zoe Belisle-Springer:  Yeah, we actually got that question not so long ago. So, a client has hit us up and it was like, “Well, I’m kind of looking to put a press release out but I have no idea how to do that”. So, we had a template out in a previous blog, like from years ago, but we found it interesting to actually put down the best practices to write those kind of things. It’s not about selling yourself, it’s just putting out something newsworthy that’s happening in your salon and telling the press about it. So, you’re not aiming to like … it has to be kind of like, this is what happened … you have to answer basically your five Ws, so what, where when, why. What’s the other one? I’m missing one.

Killian Vigna: Who, what and then why.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Exactly.

Killian Vigna: I was going to say how.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: And then you add the how as well. It’s really about focusing on those six key things and then putting the information out in a concise way. There is a format to it, so that’s pretty much what we explain in the blog. Like, you have to write a good headline, but then there’s like a format of, okay this is to be released on this day, or it’s for immediate release. You have to put your contact details, links to your Facebook, or twitter, depending, and even like just an email address and so on, and so on.

Killian Vigna: So, why would a salon owner want to create a press release because another way you create a social media poster, even if you write a broad blog. They usually have some sort of end goal. So the end goal is here’s a post to book on line, or buy a gift card or something like that. What’s the end result of a press release?

Zoe Belisle-Springer:  So, the press release is basically to get some sort of magazine or blog or any kind of public patient to write about you. To write about something that’s happening in your salon. So, it could be a grand opening. It could be a new branch that you’re rebranding. It could be just a regular event in your salon that you want to promote in some kind of way and attract people other than just social media right? It could be pretty much anything like you’ve received an award maybe. Your salon has got the best hairdressing award of the year. It could be anything that kind of comes out of the ordinary and that has value to other people that can bring you up to an influential status in your industry.

Killian Vigna: Would you … so for your press release like, is there a procedure or a process to go through to get a press release done or can anyone do it, or do you need the contacts in the local magazine or paper? Like how exactly do you go about going, “All right I want to do a press release for an event or say I’ve gotten a new product stand in my … so this is a regular one where it’s like a product testing day. So, salons hold an event after hours, where they trial new products to people. So, I want to write a press release to get people to come into my salon and try our products for free. Have a glass of wine or something. How would I go about that?

Zoe Belisle-Springer:  Well basically you don’t need anything to write the press release. You just need yourself and your brain right? You are the person that knows best what’s going on in your salon, what event you’re holding, and all the information. What you’re basically doing is putting it into the format that any publication will request kind of thing, so they can write about it later on.

So, once you have that format and it’s all very well explained on the blog, it’s kind of hard to go through it. It’s very visual and we have a picture, this is the headline, this is the enteral part. Then you have like a lead paragraph, and an outro and this and that, but once you have that format put down, then it all comes to building relationship with the publications.

Maybe you don’t know who writes for let’s say, Creative Head, or Professional Beauty, or a spa right. They have contacts. You can email them, you can pick up the phone and say, “Okay, listen, I’m hosting this event. I’m looking for the person who writes about … who gets the press releases usually, and they’ll most likely give you a name or just an email address. It would be better to get a name so that way you can have the FAO, for attention of.

Its just about building a relationship with them over time. At first it’s not easy but it’s doable.

Killian Vigna: I suppose it’s one of those things where you’re going to feel a little nervous approaching them at first, bit it’s a case of just do it. Like, their job is to take these requests in.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Exactly. They’re used to it. They’re waiting for it. They need that to write their content.

Killian Vigna: So, don’t beat around the bush. Don’t be shy about it. Get onto the blog Zoe has the format then up here. So, I just see you have like, insert headline, your date, your release date, the body, and that’s the who, what, where, when, why and how. Then include, we have on the second page or in the email, you can include a photograph, your media queries contact or links to social media.

Zoe Belisle-Springer:  Yeah, and people usually send these press releases through email so what I suggest is kind of recap. Do a little recap in a friendly way when you’re like writing your email, and then attach the official press release in case they need it, in like a very clear kind of clean cut version, attach a photograph that can accompany whatever happened. If the event is passed and you want to talk about it or if it’s the new branch and you have like pictures of the new area, reception area, or just like the facilities and stuff. You could add them there because it’s always more interesting with an image right?

Killian Vigna: Yeah, oh the graphics so much better. It’s just more visual like, I see a chunk of text and I nearly freak at just looking it up when I read that. If I see an image I can get most of my idea of what’s going on there.

So, I suppose the key take aways here, like for anyone that is interested that wants to write this, you can just go on to … Zoe, just go onto our site. So, the blog is actually called, if you go onto the Phorest blog, it’s called, How to write irresistible and simple salon press releases. We have … Zoe has the layout of the format there and you can just copy and follow that through.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: If you have any questions, don’t hesitate, just email us at marketing@phorest.com and we’ll be more than happy to help.

Killian Vigna: Zoe will even over your press release. There you go now. I’ve just signed you up for a new job. Cool.

So, we’re just going to move on to what’s called the attitude of gratitude here. A lot of you may be aware of this at the moment. You would have received a little leaflet through your door over the past 2 to 3 weeks, and we’ve just released a blog as well over the last few days. So, we’re getting people to come in for the attitude to gratitude.

We’re joined by Justin Fiddy the loyalty manager, and Justin you’re in charge of the attitude to gratitude essentially. What is it and why are we promoting it?

Justin Fiddy: So what the attitude to gratitude is, is a way for the salons to get make the most of their busy period being December time. Then capitalize on that as much as possible to the quieter time. To give you a small gift, a token of appreciation to your clients in December for them to use in January to get them to come back in, and we book in for treatments and spend the money with you in January?

Zoe Belisle-Springer:  So, how does the scheme work exactly?

Justin Fiddy: The cards are given out to the clients so obviously when they book back in in January they can take the discount off, which is all set by the salon, so they set the minimum spend, the usable dates. So, a popular one would just be from the 1st to the 31st of January. So this is all done, all the deductions are then taken off when the client comes to pay at the end of the treatment in January.

Killian Vigna: So, the main idea, I mean like we know a lot of salon owners they’re pretty much set for November, December in terms of bookings. You’ve got Christmas parties. You’ve got all these different events, even just every weekend alone in general is a drinking weekend now. So, you’re not worried about… My liver’s dying for a break here.

Justin Fiddy: Or a kidney going in for the detoxing.

Killian Vigna: Yeah. So, it’s not about getting the clients in for November December. They’re going to come in anyway but it’s getting them to come back in again in January. So, like we say, it’s boomeranging the clients back in.

Justin Fiddy: Yeah that’s it exactly. Boomerang is exactly the term you want to use, and to get them back in for the quieter periods.

Killian Vigna: So how exactly … now, a client has booked an appointment in December. How can they claim the card? They’ve booked in for December, and what they’ve to do down there is give the gift card?

Justin Fiddy: Yeah. So, when they booked in December they come in for their treatment. So that’s when the card’s given out. So when they’re actually coming in for the treatment in December, the salon then gives the client a gratitude card as a Christmas present, and say, “We look forward to seeing you again in January”. So, hopefully you can get them to book in there and then, but if it turns out that particular client can’t use the card themselves, it’s not held against their actual client card, so they can give it to one of their friends, families, co-workers.

Zoe Belisle-Springer:  That’s really clever.

Justin Fiddy: So you can pass it around a little bit as well and then …

Killian Vigna: There’s a handy Chris Cringle idea just on the side now for anyone [crosstalk 00:16:12].

Justin Fiddy: You’re on to something there.

Killian Vigna: Exactly.

Justin Fiddy: Yeah, so I mean, you’ve a chance of getting a new face in as well without really sort of fishing for it too much as well.

Zoe Belisle-Springer:  In terms of numbers, how much revenue did that generate last year for the salons that use this?

Justin Fiddy: Across all the salons that use it, it was 193 thousand.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: That’s amazing.

Killian Vigna: 193 thousand?

Justin Fiddy: Yeah and that was across 135 salons I think.

Killian Vigna: Was last year the first year of it?

Justin Fiddy: No. It’s been running for a good few years now so last year we just, we went mad and we really dug into the stats, and find out what it was actually worth. More so than we’ve done in the past like so, just to actually find out what it’s worth to the salons in the long wrong. If it’s showing a great increase or …

Killian Vigna: So what control does the salon owner have over this card?

Justin Fiddy: They hold all the control over it ultimately. They decide the amounts on it. They decide the minimum spend needed. So, a popular one this year would be 15 pounds off, but the clients have to spend 50 pounds or 45 pounds when they come back in.

Killian Vigna: So, it’s not necessarily like kind of a discount thing because we don’t really push the discount but with attitude of gratitude, they have to have a minimum spend.

Justin Fiddy: A minimum spend yeah. Obviously it’s the salon’s time and they still have all the heads to pay as well. So that’s obviously a huge part of it. You still have to make sure the overheads are paid and you’re still getting revenue in.

Killian Vigna: Yep. And are the cards personalized to the salon or are they like a Phorest gift card stuff?

Justin Fiddy: Again, they’re all personalized to the salon, so they come branded with the salon’s logo, all the salon’s details on the back of the cards. So, website, telephone number, so they still … it’s their branding throughout it. It’s not …

Killian Vigna: So like the salon’s client knows that it’s from them. It’s not just a third party gift card kind of thing, and the salons can choose their colors as well can’t they? There’s four options.

Justin Fiddy: They can. Yeah there’s a choice, white and gold, silver and silver, red and gold or red and silver.

Killian Vigna: Red and silver. So pretty much any color’s there to cover all brands.

Justin Fiddy: Yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer:  So to place an order I think there’s a deadline though isn’t there?

Justin Fiddy: Yeah. We’ve set the deadline at the moment to the 11th of November. Obviously, because we want the salons to be able to give them out from the start of December. So, the sooner they get the orders in the more chance they get them on time to give out.

Killian Vigna: And the reason the deadline is so early is because people are probably thinking the 11th November, Jesus there’s hardly any time because you’re already up the walls with them aren’t you?

Justin Fiddy: Yeah, yeah. Since the start of October where we were probably about six to eight days turnaround, we’re now about 10 to 12 days, so we can see that starting to increase a little bit as well.

Killian Vigna: You should see the boys over in the corner, the printer doesn’t stop all night now.

Justin Fiddy: Ch, ch, ch, dreaming of printer noises in the sleep yeah.

Killian Vigna: Justin’s going to have post traumatic stress. Yeah that’s excellent so, I suppose yep, anyone that is interested in the attitude gratitude, there are four different colors to choose from. They get their own salon name and logo printed on the card. They can choose how much the card is worth. The minimum spend on the card, and is there a timeframe to redeem the card?

Justin Fiddy: Yeah again, so ideally you want the clients back in in January. We’re advising the 1st of January to the 31st January so you’re giving yourself that whole month for the clients to book back in.

Killian Vigna: Yeah. You wouldn’t really want to go any later because then you have it’s Mother’s day, or Valentines day.

Justin Fiddy: Valentines. Yeah. Obviously the 14th February then, so you would expect things to kind of pick up around there.

Killian Vigna: Yes. You’d want to have a new campaign for that one. You won’t want to stretch the attitude for gratitude for too long. Make sure …

Justin Fiddy: No. Stick at the January yeah.

Killian Vigna: Just one thing that came up from one of our in-house trainers who were saying when you do send out the attitude for gratitude gift cards, to get the clients back in can drip feed your message. So, if you sell … hand out 200 of gift cards, maybe take 50 this week, 50 next week because you don’t want them all coming in taking up your busy times. You want them coming in to redeem the cards when it’s a quieter period because like your Saturday, that’s just easy money right there nearly.

Justin Fiddy: Yeah, you can set up categories against the clients when you’re giving them out. So, like you could run text message campaigns depending on which week you’re having or if you’re trying to target a specific group of clients as well. Like if you’ve given cards out to your facial clients, target them for one week, maybe nails the next week, so you could break it down that way as well.

Killian Vigna: If you want any help on the SMS or the email marketing side of it to get clients back in, we’ve uploaded templates to your Phorest, but you can always contact a member of the Grow team would happily step you through it.

Justin Fiddy: Absolutely.

Killian Vigna: Yeah that’s absolutely brilliant. Hopefully we got some more clarity on that Attitude for Gratitude character because it’s so busy at the moment.

Zoe Belisle-Springer:  It’s an amazing opportunity to be honest.

Justin Fiddy: Yeah, yeah. It’s really good and it’s proven that it works for salons now as well. So, everyone’s thinking of Christmas and up the walls already like. So, it’s definitely picking up.

Killian Vigna: Yeah and that was the thing people were saying with their Christmas, “Oh I think of my December campaigns when it comes to December”. You should be thinking of your campaign like six to eight weeks beforehand.

Justin Fiddy: I’m really thinking of next February now to be honest. Stop planning for Christmas because …

Killian Vigna: Don’t let it catch up because you’re competitors they’re on top of it. Like all you need is just to lose one day dealing with a client to go, I’ll get back to it. You see yourself slowly getting busier and busier. So, plan ahead, get as much information, get it all sorted a good few weeks beforehand.

Justin Fiddy: Definitely yep. That’s the way to go.

Killian Vigna: Brilliant, thanks a million Justin.

Justin Fiddy: Right thanks lads.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Bye

Killian Vigna: So, just to follow up then on the Attitude to Gratitude. This week and over the past few weeks, we have been doing a gift card, so it’s a webinar based on becoming a gift card marketing expert. So, it’s not like we know, Christmas is a great time, two to three months on to massive revenue and to gift cards, and that’s what the attitude for gratitude is about, but gift cards they’re a massive gift for birthdays and everyday it’s someone’s birthday. So, if you want to jump onto that webinar and kind of find out how to increase your revenue, increase year round revenue, that would be a good one to hop onto.

Some more upcoming webinars we have is last week we did an online booking one. That was the first time we’ve done that in a couple of months. So, that will be coming up in about 2 to 3 weeks. And then Zoe, you have one yourself coming up don’t you?

Zoe Belisle-Springer:  Yeah on November 14th, it’s on introduction to snap chat. So, basically best practices, how to set up an account. It’s kind of tailored to the audience itself, so I kind of ask, who has, who hasn’t had an account before, and if not many people have an account then we’ll spend more time on that. If people actually know how it works then we’ll spend more time on best practices, and content creation, and marketing tips.

Killian Vigna: So, that’s more interactive webinar I suppose.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah definitely. Bring your phone but also listen to the webinar maybe on another platform or a computer, or an iPad.

Killian Vigna: Yeah. Two devices. So, that one is actually … that’s on the 14th of November isn’t it?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Exactly yeah.

Killian Vigna: And then we have a client retention webinar I believe, then on …

Zoe Belisle-Springer: On the 7th.

Killian Vigna: … Monday.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. That’s coming up.

Killian Vigna: And that one is with Chris Brennan isn’t it?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yes it is absolutely. It’s about basically best practices once again. It’s getting those clients to come back in and not just, it’s not about getting new clients all the time, if you have like, if you say you have five thousand clients already, you don’t necessarily need to grab five thousand more. Like you just have to get them to come back in more often you know.

Killian Vigna: Yeah and we all know like it costs ten times as much to get a new client than it is to retain a client. So, start off with your client retention and then if you want to grow more clients, then work from there but it’s always a good foundation to have under your belt. And that webinar we said is Monday at 11.00 am.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, and when you tune into that one you actually get a companion ebook, a client retention companion ebook and an interview checklist as well. I mean it’s really handy you get freebies at the same time.

Killian Vigna: And everyone loves freebies. That’s a little cool tool kit to take away with you from that webinar.

So, yeah, we’re going to wrap it up on that. So, today we went through the salon visual marketing. We’ve actually gone through a bit here today now. I know the Attitude of Gratitude took up a whole lot, but yeah, so what we went through today was the salon visual marketing, so the golden rule is to have you stand out. And to recap on that one, it was about don’t go too crazy on your social media post with your images. Keep it nice, keep it cool, keep the colors in touch with your brand, and try and use real life images as opposed to stock photos of objects or anything like that.

We talked about the return of Phorest Attitude for Gratitude loyalty scheme, so that blog is now up on the Phorest/blog site, and those gift cards have gone out. There’s webinars on those every second week, and to end up we went through the effective and simple salon press release tips for best exposure. And Zoe volunteered as well to read through everyone’s press releases.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Hey oh. We can help us with some tips but we can’t write them all!

Killian Vigna: I know. That’s a blog we advise you to actually go and read because it’s all laid out there visually and you should have no problems once you use that guideline.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah like keep it on hand when you actually want to write one, it’s really handy.

Killian Vigna: Brilliant. So, guys thanks for tuning in. My name’s Killian Vigna and thanks to Zoe Belisle-Springer. All the best.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Cheers. All the best.

Thanks for reading!


Catch up on the previous Phorest FM episode, or check out the next Phorest FM episode!

Note: Phorest FM is designed to be heard, not read. We encourage you to listen to the audio, which includes emotion which may not translate itself on the page. Podcast transcription by Rev.com