Digital Marketing for Today’s Barber
We are continuing in our series of blogs offering digital marketing advice to businesses in different niches. Very similar to tattoo parlors, barber shops are an important part of the US retail landscape. There are more than 440,000 barbers in the US that operate more than 41,000 barber shops. Those barber shops represent more than $1.8 billion of revenue. Now that we understand how important this industry is, we must learn how to market these businesses to connect great barbers with the customers that need them most.
So how do you market a barber shop? The answer again is VISUALLY. Haircuts are 100% about the barber or stylist. A good barber will be a great friend helping you look good for the most important days of your life. So the successful way to market a barber shop is through highlighting the work of its barbers. Here are three pieces of advice that will help grow any barber shop online.
Build a Barber Shop Website
Barber shops are filled with brilliant, creative artists but many fail because they don’t focus on running an effective business. In fact, just a few feet north of our office is a barber school. When in a hurry and overdue for a cut, many times I will head over to the school for a quick and cheap cut. At my last visit, I spoke to the student about the school’s curriculum. I could not believe that the school taught minimal marketing and business lessons to its students. So I dedicate this blog to all aspiring barbers!
To effectively marketing a barber shop, you have to start with a great website. The site should be simple. Post information about your barbers/stylists, your hours/fees and samples of your latest cuts/styles. That’s all. You can do it quite effectively with a WordPress site and a few easy plug-ins.
Visual Marketing Socially
There are two amazing social media platforms for promoting barber shops. First is Instagram. Post your best work to Instagram. Use hashtags to get noticed. You can now even promote these posts to specific geographies and demographics. Facebook is another platform that can work just as well. Create an Instagram account and Facebook page for your business. Experience with advertising on these two platforms can really bring your business to the next level.
Implement a Review Strategy
Many businesses do not understand the value of a comprehensive review strategy. A review strategy starts by encouraging reviews. Now there are a lot of rules from Yelp, Google and other people regarding reviews. You cannot incentivize positive reviews. You cannot reward them. But there is a cool product that we developed (sorry for the plug, but it works) that will help you boost your positive reviews while simultaneously collecting email addresses and identifying customer service issues. They are called ReviCards and you can learn more about them at www.getrevicards.com.
After implementing a collection strategy, you need to make sure you monitor online reviews. There are a few ways to do this. The most simple and effective is just to make sure that you have claimed your business and have registered a working email. You will be notified if anyone leaves a review. Make sure you acknowledge and thank those who leave positive reviews. More importantly, make sure that you acknowledge and reply to all negative reviews. There will also always be unsatisfied customers. Acknowledging this, fixing issues and communicating with unhappy customers will mitigate the negative effects online. Overall, people understand that there will be complaints. They value more your response than the original complaint.
There you go… three simple steps that you can take to market a barber shop – an effective website, a visual social media plan and a review strategy. You can implement these tactics by yourself or with professional support from a company like Boxless Media. Either way, if you have questions and need help, tweet us at @BoxlessMedia. We are happy to answer your questions whether you are a customer or just interested in growing your business!