Welcome to the Salon Owner’s Podcast, Phorest FM Episode 18. 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 18

Having an Instagram page is really important for businesses today, but getting people on your page is not always easy. We have some tips to increase engagement on your Instagram business page, and help users become more aware of your brand name. In addition to that, host Killian Vigna has written an ebook that covers the basics and essential information a salon owner needs to know about SMS marketing. The highlights are covered through this episode, and you’ll find out how you can get your hands on a free copy.



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Killian Vigna: Welcome to the Phorest FM podcast, episode 18. I’m your host, Killian Vigna, and today I’m joined by cohost…

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Zoe Belisle-Springer.

Killian Vigna: In this week’s episode, Zoe will run through 10 tips to perk up engagement on your salon Instagram profile, and how to get your copy of the ultimate SMS marketing game plan ebook. We’ll run through some last minute marketing ideas to get your clients in more over the St Patrick’s weekend, along with your salon’s marketing prep for Mother’s Day. And, as always, we top of 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.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Good morning.

Killian Vigna: Good morning, Zoe. How are you getting on? Your voice is getting a little bit better, it’s not as rough as last week.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: It’s all right. It’s all right. Yeah, exactly.

Killian Vigna: Still a few coughing. So I suppose we’ll just jump straight into it. The 10 tips to perk up your engagement on Instagram.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Instagram. Yeah. Well, it is a topic that comes back on pretty much any social media platform, so whether you’re on Facebook, on Snapchat, on Instagram, on Pinterest, on Twitter, the same question-

Killian Vigna: Pretty much anything. Yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: The same question always comes back. How do I get more engagement or, how do I get better engagement.  It’s not something that will ever happen overnight, no matter what platform you’re on. We did this blog because Instagram, there is quite a few tips that you can put out that will help out rather quickly, like, within… Obviously, like I said, not overnight but over a period of six months, you’ll see a constant increase in your engagement with these.

Killian Vigna: So what is it they say, it’s a marathon not a sprint? I know it’s actually a hurdle or a steeple chase not a sprint.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: There you go.

Killian Vigna: Because it’s up and down, up and down.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: So, tip number one. We recommend switching to an Instagram business profile and if you’re not really familiar with what that is, basically, it’s the normal … When you sign up for an Instagram normally, you have a normal page, a bit like a Facebook profile, right, for your personal self. An Instagram business profile is something you can add on, it’s only been released a few months ago now, basically, instead of having that regular profile, on your page, clients can contact you through email, they can call you through Instagram or they can check out your location as well, it has like your little… Your address for your business and you still have that normal website button as well and there’s space for you to write a spiel of what your page is about.

Killian Vigna: So with that one, is that a case of if you have been using kind of, I suppose, your own personal Instagram page, can you convert it over like Facebook or do you just create a new page now?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Well, you could but if you’re using… Like, as first of all, I think you would always use your salon name, so even if it was a personal page with your salon name, it’s just a…

Killian Vigna: It’s almost like a brand anyway.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, it is a brand so you just convert it and it takes literally 10 seconds, it’s really not that long. You just have to input your personal, like, your business personal information and you’re grand.

Killian Vigna: And they’ve made it easier for you to switch between accounts instead of having to log out, log back in, not anymore.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah. It’s so easy now. Yeah.

Killian Vigna: Cool.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: So tip number two, post consistently but make sure it’s quality. There’s nothing new there. That’s pretty much like on every other platform but Instagram does kind of prefer polished content, so the better quality on Instagram, the more engagement you’ll get as well.

Killian Vigna: Yeah. Well, it’s all about image, it’s making your images look good and stand out, I suppose.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, exactly. Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Killian Vigna: Oh, and if you’re going to do it consistently, make sure you mix up the content as well so don’t be repetitive.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, exactly. Tip number 3. Interact with other users. Respond to comments. I mean, that’s nothing new as well but Instagram is kind of like a mix between Twitter and Facebook in a way, so it is a very content driven platform but there’s more to it than that. There’s also, like, a conversation that’s supposed to happen so you have to be mindful of that and it’s not just about interacting with people that are engaging with your page, but also just go through other people’s page, other people, like, if it’s … I don’t know, for instance, if you’re going to a trade show, go onto that trade show’s page, look at their things, interact with them, because some people on their page will be interacting with that page and might see your name and then click on your name and go, so…

Killian Vigna: Yeah, and that could benefit in loads of ways.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Exactly, yeah.

Killian Vigna: So, you could be… If you’re seen engaged into several different conversations, you’re going to be seen as the industry leader, you’re going to start gaining new clients because people are… I suppose you become a regular on Instagram for people that don’t know who you are, they see you all the time, they go check you out and then there’s a new salon.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, exactly and if, you know-

Killian Vigna: So that’s brand awareness, exposure, stuff like those.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Because when you comment on things, you’re obviously giving a notification to whoever you’re commenting on, so by giving that notification, like, for instance, if I’m on just my personal feed and just my personal Instagram, I’ll be like, “Ooh, who’s following me now” and I just click on it automatically just because I’m curious, you know?

Killian Vigna: We’re nosy. We’re going to go check it out, yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Exactly, so if you do that, more people can be aware that you exist on Instagram, so keep on with that kind of idea, advertise and use relevant hashtags. So, it is a fact that if you use hashtags on Instagram you’re going to reach more people or at least appear in more kind of different…

Killian Vigna: These aren’t just your standard #nofilter or #sunnyday, yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. Try to go for hashtags that are relevant to you or your industry or your salon, so if you’re doing reviews and quotes, excuse me, you could possibly leave #review or something like that.

Killian Vigna: Mix them up. You can always… Quick search on Google, you can actually see what the trending hashtags are at the time and try and get your salon on board with them.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, exactly. Yeah. But you can also use hashtags to research those conversations like I was telling you earlier.

Killian Vigna: Yep.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: If you’re in the research bar and you type in, I don’t know, trade show hair or something like that-

Killian Vigna: It would be just like Twitter.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: And you have… Exactly.

Killian Vigna: Follow the conversation.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: You can check out a conversation and just kind of interact with that and so you’re not waiting on people to interact with you, you’re actually engaging as well.

Killian Vigna: Yep.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: So that’s one thing, and then tip five, post during opportune times. If you have switched to a business profile already on Instagram, you have the analytics in there. There’s a little insight thing that you can click on and you’ll have basically analytics on pretty much everything that can happen on Instagram but the cool part is they show you when your followers are engaging most, so if you see there’s a massive drop at 3 p.m., perhaps don’t post at 3 p.m., try and post when it’s higher.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, that’s a really big one there because we always have salon owners coming to us going, “When’s the best time to send out this email, this instant message, this Facebook ad”, whatever it is. It’s all the same. We can only give you a guideline. Think about it, all right, if you’re traveling to work, so, I suppose, 8 to 9, you’re going to be on your phone.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah.

Killian Vigna: Little break, quarter past 11, lunch and then after work hours. They’re going to be the peak times when you’re off your phone but you need to use your analytics because your clients are different to our clients.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, exactly.

Killian Vigna: So when you, yourselves, are on social media, so for us, that’s the good time, but then your clients will be on different times, if that makes sense. You need to use your analytics and work it out yourself. We can give you guideline but everyone is different.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, yeah, yeah, exactly. And if you needed to schedule posts, if you know your opportune times are at times that you can’t actually be on social, you can schedule posts to happen as well, save drafts on Instagram now as well. So tip number 6, tag brands and customers. It’s becoming kind of a trend in more so the fashion and any kind of clothing industry, right, so, if, for instance, a model would wear a piece of clothing, they’d tag the brand that made the piece of clothes but you can do this as well for things that you create or looks that you make in your salon. You can just tag the brand that you’ve been using, the products that you’ve been using because that way, if other people that don’t know you follow those brands, then they’ll know, “Oh, this person, oh, this salon uses this brand and I like this brand”, so it’s just once again creating the conversation and putting yourself out there.

Killian Vigna: It comes back to your brand awareness, as well, yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah.

Killian Vigna: You’re tagging the brands, you’re seen to be using the best products.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah.

Killian Vigna: The best… Yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Exactly. And if ever you do anything with models or even any kind of morph… I don’t know how to say…

Killian Vigna: If you have a sponsored guest treatment or a model or something.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: If you have models in or any kind of events… Yeah, something like that, tag everyone.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, tag them, tag everyone.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, exactly.

Killian Vigna: It’s your opportunity to get out there and especially get them involved as well.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, exactly. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Tip number 7, show off your customers. Kind of like the same thing here but show, instead of just putting up, for instance, quotes or just, I don’t know, a picture of products, using your customers, showing that they’re in your salon and they look happy, people are going to react way more to that than just product images or something like that.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, and like we said, you know when a client comes in to have an appointment with you and then you send that review SMS, that’s a good chance to, I suppose…

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Get that salon selfie.

Killian Vigna: Get the… Yeah, get the salon selfie, because otherwise you’re just going to have posts of written content and that’s very heavy looking, especially on your Facebook newsfeed, so if you have the actual image of your client and their review, that would be even better. Or even, we saw one the other day, where someone got the reviews and just put them into a little graphic.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, into a little graphic and it was super cute.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, it makes it open, it really stood out.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Tip number 8, run contests and giveaways. That’s always a winner way to do it. Excuse me for the pun there but it is. So Instagram actually doesn’t really punish people like on Facebook when you do likes and shares or tag a friend and like this page and this and that, so you can do that, you know, it’s easy, it takes two seconds and you’re done and you will get traction out of it because who doesn’t like a contest or a giveaway?

Killian Vigna: Well, exactly. Yeah. Free stuff.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, exactly.

Killian Vigna: And this the last one then, is it?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Well, you skipped one here-

Killian Vigna: Did I skip one?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: So… Yeah. So, 9, using Instagram stories. Instagram stories actually… You know, they’re kind of a copy of Snapchat when you think of it but they are working.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, I didn’t like them at the start and now I’m kind of getting there.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. Yeah.

Killian Vigna: I still haven’t posted one but I will be soon.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: And they will drive more engagement to your page as well because you have a following that you probably don’t necessarily have on Snapchat and because you’re in the app already, you don’t have to go out and do another live on some other platform, so people if they don’t know you and they watch your story and they’re interested in it, they can click your profile, go straight away and then if you have that business profile, they can contact you straight away.

Killian Vigna: I’m doing way more nosing around ever since the Instagram stories. Like I said, I haven’t posted one but there would be guys that I wouldn’t usually notice in my newsfeed and now the minute I open Snapchat or Instagram, they’re appearing straight at the top of it.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah.

Killian Vigna: It’s like you can’t miss them.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah.

Killian Vigna: They’re straight there.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: And there’s something that… I’m still investigating this but, for some reason, if I watch, personally, a story more than a few times, they’ll constantly pop up in my first stories appearing, so if people watch your story more than once and on a regular basis, there’s quite a good chance that when they open their app, you’re going to pop there as soon as you have a story up.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, it will be just like Facebook, you’re only kind of really showed to your most engaged fans.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, the people you’re engaging more, yeah, with. And then the last tip, creating Instagram ads through Facebook. I can’t really go through that all here because it takes, you know, it takes quite a while and we do have a webinar on this. Well, not just on this, but on Facebook in general and ads and how to create them and such, but Instagram ads run through Facebook, basically. You can create them on your Facebook page and just have them straight away on your profile and that will definitely drive more engagement to your page.

Killian Vigna: And I think you can make an Instagram ad with a video as well, as long as it’s below 60 seconds.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yes. Yeah, exactly.

Killian Vigna: A little top tip on those ad ones there, always use the mobile view.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. Yeah.

Killian Vigna: When you’re creating them, because that covers you for mobile and Instagram. The desktop, I can’t even remember the last time I was on Facebook on my desktop so…

Zoe Belisle-Springer: There.

Killian Vigna: There you go. There’s my tip. So, finishing up on that one and now we’re moving over to the ultimate SMS Marketing Game Plan so…

Zoe Belisle-Springer: The ebook that you wrote.

Killian Vigna: I wrote it with the email SMS guys in Grow, and I wrote it with the training team, so a lot of inputs in there, a lot of content as well. It works for both clients and non-clients. There is a section at the back for clients of Phorest, so how they can actually create SMS campaigns using the system.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Right.

Killian Vigna: But like I said, the majority of this is just the benefits of SMS.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: So, in a nutshell, could I… If someone had never ever sent an SMS campaign, would they understand a hundred percent of what’s going on or you kind of need to have a basic knowledge of it?

Killian Vigna: Oh, no, completely. The idea of this book is being… It’s stripped right back. It’s like writing stories for kids. This is basically my attitude. Keep everything simple, short, to the point. Like, it is a big enough ebook but like I said, there’s a good chunk of that where it’s kind of step by step how to use it through the system, so a couple of things to expect. We’ll highlight the benefit of SMS for your salon, we’ll identify the difference between email and SMS, why would you use SMS over email or vice versa, we’ll demystify the marketing and transactional SMS or text messages, so your marketing ones, they’re like your promotional ones or “Oh, I’ve a couple of empty spots, I’ll send out an SMS to some clients”. Your automated ones, then, they are like appointment reminders, thank yous, review SMSs, so they’re ones that you’d send out automatically. There’s no real promotion, they’re straight to the point. The client knows exactly what the message is. We’ll explore a client reconnect, so, again, that’s another feature for our Phorest users, and the idea behind that is if you have a couple of outstanding clients, you just click a button and we’ll send an SMS straight out to them to get them back in.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Right. So clients that haven’t been in in a while?

Killian Vigna: Yeah, so it takes, like… It could be… It takes, like, six weeks worth of data and… Or it takes at least six weeks worth of data, so every time I go into your salon and make an appointment, that gets recorded and the category of the appointment, stuff like those.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Killian Vigna: So it will put me back into… So, say…

Zoe Belisle-Springer: So I you haven’t come back in that six weeks then…

Killian Vigna: Yeah, I’m just looking at my nails here, covering those sets. So, say I went in for a manicure, six weeks later I haven’t gone in for a manicure since, client reconnect will tell you that I’m overdue a manicure and send an SMS to get me back in.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: I think he’s due here.

Killian Vigna: So that’s a little hint, I think I need a manicure. So we’ll also understand SMS salon advertising and what it means for your salon, so with that… That’s actually a good section because we have some template SMSs that I actually robbed from Zoe, that she’d done in a blog, so a couple of templates kind of give you an idea, so, like, Mother’s Day’s coming up.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: What you can do, yeah.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, even happy birthdays or some cheeky questionnaire campaigns.

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

Killian Vigna: Then we have “learn the true value SMS can bring to your salon”, because it is … People say, “Oh, I’m not doing SMS marketing, it’s going to cost me a fortune”. We’re not saying… Like, you have 2000 clients, not a hope would I send an SMS to 2000 clients. I’d send an email to 2000 clients. I’d probably send them three of them in a month, but with your SMS… SMS is all about targeting and filtered and that’s what this ebook is really about, so we have two case studies from salons in here and they’re saying basically they just didn’t understand the true value of it because they were sending out to a couple of hundred and it was costing them an absolute fortune, so the return on investment, they didn’t really see one but they were just sending out one service offer to loads of different people, so it wasn’t actually targeted, if you get me.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, yeah, whereas… Yeah.

Killian Vigna: So now they start doing campaigns, so, like I said, the manicure example, they get 50 clients that are overdue a manicure and they go, “Right, let’s send the SMS out to 50 of them”. Like SMS, a couple are sent, your return on investment’s less than a tenner there, or I mean it’s cost you less than a tenner. If one person books, you’ve already made over a hundred percent.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Killian Vigna: So we go through how to target and filter and kind of understand that a bit more and then we determine how to structure and create an actual campaign.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: But that’s all like a walkthrough of if you’re using Phorest System.

Killian Vigna: If you’re using Phorest System. But, again, if you’re a non-client, we have the four golden rules, so personalize, keep it clear and concise, include a timeframe and a strong call to action, give and offer monetary value, so instead of discounting, we flat out refuse discounting, it’s all about offer value, because you’re not going to ask your doctor for a discount so why should you, you’ve spent enough years in school for it, and then include an opt-out, so what that is, that’s going through the spam. So, I suppose, if you’re living in the US or if you’re living in Canada, you have to actually ask your client can you opt them in for marketing and a lot of our US and Canadian clients will understand that now because we have told them to start doing that, or we’ve asked them to do that in November, so a lot of people will have three months worth of client database built up there if you started opting your clients in for marketing. It’s because if you send a marketing campaign to a client in the US or in Canada and they have never given you permission, you could be fined and if you do it again, you’ll be fined a hefty amount, so, again, the CAN-SPAM Act 2003 is the US one and then there’s a Canadian one as well, which is essentially the same.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Just a different name.

Killian Vigna: Just a different name, yeah. So, yeah, check those out.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: So, yeah, and that’s all available, I mean, that’s on the blog since today so that’s all available now and for free, you just have to fill in that little form and get your copy.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, and just before I go, like I said, it’s not about moving from email to SMS because 81% of our highest performing guys actually use SMS and email. Think about it, SMS has a 99% open rate. Use it but use it wisely, I’d say maybe one, two SMSs to a client a month, with your email, send as many emails as you can usually because we look at the emails as your brand awareness. About 30, 40% of clients are going to open that. For an SMS, nearly a hundred percent. Basically a hundred percent of your clients are going to open that.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, because everyone’s on your phone anyways, all the time. Yeah.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, so highly recommend that book for everyone. Yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah. So, if we move on to the… Basically we had… I think we were talking about last minute ideas for St Paddy’s and Mother’s Days in that intro earlier and so basically, like we said before, it’s always best to start promoting things in advance, so, I mean, Mother’s Day is coming up real soon, St Paddy’s as well, St Paddy’s is next weekend, isn’t it?

Killian Vigna: So, yeah… No, St Paddy’s is this weekend.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: This weekend? So you have [crosstalk 00:19:02] oh, Jesus.

Killian Vigna: Exactly, it’s Friday 17th.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah.

Killian Vigna: So, we have here some salon St Patrick’s day ideas.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, like, if you go onto SMS, yeah.

Killian Vigna: Again, more SMS templates.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, we had one here, “We’re going green this St Paddy’s day. Book now and get whatever”, a treatment or a service that you want to add on, your link to book and an opt-out, just simple things like that and you can roll competitions and if you haven’t downloaded the March marketing toolkit yet, that’s on social media and it’s on the blog as well, but that’s a free marketing toolkit with ideas, voucher designs, quotes and graphics, SMS templates, so that, you know, you’ve got loads of content there that you can use if you don’t really have an idea or if you’re just kind of running out of time to put something together on your own, you know?

Killian Vigna: Yeah, and if anyone is using Phorest Salon software, we have a Mother’s Day email template uploaded there and we have a March newsletter one, which is essentially a St. Patrick’s day email, so…

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, you’ve covered both, basically. Yeah.

Killian Vigna: So if you want help with those, again, they’re just templates, so you need to go in and kind of tailor them to your salon, but if you want a little bit of help on those, you could always give the Grow team a call, and SMS and email guys, and they’ll be able to work through those templates with you.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah.

Killian Vigna: They can even set it up for you, yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: There you go.

Killian Vigna: So, we’re just finishing off the last section and this is you, Zoe.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: The Phorest Academy webinars. So this week we have two. We have one today going out… Well, both of them are at 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. UK or Ireland time, and if you’re in the US tuning in from the east coast, that’s 10 a.m. So today’s webinar is Becoming a Client Retention Expert and that’s run by Chris Brennan and he also runs Wednesday’s one, and that one is the Online Reputation Masterclass, so definitely check those out, they’re really worth it. They’re an hour long and if you miss it, you can get a recording out of it but, you know, it’s really worth being there live because there are Q and A’s at the end of those sessions so if you have particular questions, Chris will take the time to answer you live, so definitely check those out.

Killian Vigna: That’s just wrapping up the show today. As always, we’d love to hear your feedback so let us know what you think about the podcast.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Should we interview someone? Should we, like…

Killian Vigna: Yeah, actually. Who would you like to hear on the show? What topics would you like to hear on the show? Leave us some feedback on Podbean or iTunes, and if you enjoy the show, we’d love to see some ratings.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, exactly.

Killian Vigna: But, yeah, so that’s all from me and…

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Well, listen we wish you a wonderful week and a wonderful St. Paddy’s day coming up, and we’ll catch you next Monday.

Killian Vigna: Oh, yeah, Happy St Paddy’s. Have a great day.

Thanks for reading!


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