For the independent beauty professional, the line between business and personal is often blurred, especially on social networks. Developing a strategy for social marketing is key.
Master the best practices of social marketing to use social media effectively as a client acquisition and engagement tool.
1. Draw a Line in the Internet Sand
Make a distinction between the personal and the professional on social media. Ideally, you will (a) create dedicated Salon Suite social media profiles for professional use on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and any other social networks where you are likely to interact with clients and (b) refrain from sharing personal updates on these networks.
If you decide that you will use your personal social media accounts for professional use, you can use sharing controls to limit exposure of updates to the appropriate group of followers on some networks, but it’s much more difficult to keep personal updates separate from business updates. You will also need to exercise restraint, because opinions, news and information you share with friends and family might not be updates clients want to read, which could result in lost followers or even lost clients.
2. Re-Sharing is Caring
As much as you might hope that an update you shared on 10 AM on a Monday morning will be seen by all your social media followers, chances are that it won’t. “Shelf life” is a grocery store term that references how long food items can remain on the shelf before their sell by or expiration date.
The shelf life of social posts references how long those posts will remain in the news feeds of your followers (on average), and it’s a very short length of time! According to Wiselytics, 75 percent of the people who will see your Facebook update will have seen it within the first 2 hours after posting.
- 7 out of 10 consumers say reviews over 90 days old are no longer relevant (Search Engine Land)
- The median life span of a tweet is 18 minutes and 92 percent of tweet engagement occurs within the 48 hours of posting (GaggleAMP)
- 75 percent of Facebook status update engagement occurs in the first 5 hours after posting (Wiselytics)
One and done doesn’t work for social media marketing. For example, if you’re posting an update with a special offer for the month, plan to post it once a week, and vary the date and time that you share the update, in order to ensure that more of your followers see it.
3. Mix in Max-Value Content
All content is not created equal. If we are going to rank the value of content type, let’s start with words, which we will rank at one point each. Twitter posts are typically 140 words (or less), so let’s give the average social media update a (generous) starting score of 150 when it contains words only.
A picture is worth a thousand words (as the saying goes). According to Forrester Research, one minute of video is worth 1.8 million – yes million – words. This gives us a basis for actually scoring social updates on a point system, as follows:
- 150 points – text-only social update
- 1000 points – image-only social update
- 1150 points – text a+ image social update
- 1,800,000 points – 1 minute video-only social update
- 1,800,150 points – text + 1-minute video social update
If you want people to notice your social posts, you’ll always include an image, such as: free stock photography or sites that sell images individually or by subscription, memes, illustrations, selfies, and before and after client photos. In the case of before and after client photos, you could use your phone’s camera to capture a short before video and a short after video taken as your client is admiring your work from every angle, while you turn her in the chair. Not only does this take your content from just another before-after collage to a more engaging medium, it also creates an instant client testimonial, and helps potential clients see what your Salon Suite environment is really like.
4. Put a Little Money Where Your Mouth Is
The organic shelf life of a social post is very short; however, if you will allocate $30 per month – which comes out to about a $1 a day – to sponsoring your most important social posts on Facebook, you can extend the reach of those updates.
Not only will you extend the shelf life, but Facebook’s ad targeting is so specific that it also allows you to restrict ad placement so that only members of a specific target market will see the ad. In this way you can avoid wasting money by putting client acquisition ads in front of people who are already your followers, or ensure that only your followers see your VIP client special offers, and so on.
You can use social media to attract and engage your clients with a few thoughtful adjustments to your approach. Differentiate between your personal and professional social updates and use these tips to extend the reach and impact of your posts.