Louise Hunter runs Rubies on the outskirts of Huddersfield in Yorkshire. She’s ambitious to grow her business and she’s a firm believer in using social media to promote the salon and the services she offers.
Louise finds Facebook the most useful social tool: “It’s great for telling clients what we’re doing, and sharing ideas about new styles and products,” she says, “and we run a monthly competition with special product give-aways as prizes.”
By using social media you’re not just pushing out your story, you’re engaging with your clients and followers in a two-way conversation every day. And it draws in new clients too: “I reckon we gain two new clients a week through our Facebook activities”, says Louise.
Rubies also uses other social media platforms to showcase their work, especially the image sites Instagram and Pinterest to show off their latest styles, cuts and colours. Louise adds: “We also use twitter a lot, mainly for business to business communications, sharing ideas on products and training, for example.”
Like many salons these days, Rubies also use an app to send out automated text messages to clients with their appointment details, which helps to reinforce client relationships and reduce no-shows to an absolute minimum.
Rubies is located in a converted woollen mill in the Huddersfield suburb of Lindley. “It’s a great location, with lots of character and an exciting business community, but we don’t get the footfall of a high street salon,” says Louise, “so we have to use every weapon to compete, interact with our existing clients and win new business.”
For those who haven’t grown up with social media, or who think it could be too complicated for them to use, Louise has a reassuring message: “It’s really not difficult at all. I learned by trial and error, and if have an issue you can always google it and get an answer.”
Using social media can be time-consuming for a busy salon owner – Louise calculates she spends a couple of hours a week posting and tweeting online. Still, she’s convinced it’s worth it: “By getting our message out there this way, we’re building a distinctive brand for Rubies that’s interesting, inventive and recognisable. It certainly works for us.”
So why not try tweeting @RubiesHairdress now?!
If social media has made a difference to your business, let us know – we’d love to see it and share it.