First Impressions Count

First Impressions Count

They say you only get one chance to make a first impression and that people make up their mind within seven seconds!

A potential client’s first impression of your salon may not actually be when they first walk into it, as now they may have had three or four other opportunities to make that all important first impression before they even visit your salon.

Potential clients can check you out on social media – how does yours look? Do you have negative comments, questions from clients that haven’t been answered, photographs of a drunken team night out, or are your social media pages a true reflection of the professional business you are running and give the client an accurate snapshot of the business and the services you offer?

It might be a good idea to take a good look at your social media, is this something that you need to sharpen up. How engaging is it to visitors and what information is it giving out. Would it be better to have one person who is responsible for this and make sure they are communicating the messages that you want your clients to see? So many times I’ve heard, “I looked on their Facebook page and it was full of selfies of the team and negative comments.” Not the kind of thing you want to hear about your salon. Social media is free and is a fantastic marketing tool when used properly. Schedule informative posts and make sure your social media gives clients and prospective clients a great first impression.

Review sites such as Qype, Feefo and TrustPilot, along with those integrated with your salon software, are where a potential client may look to see what others think of your salon and the service it provides. It’s always good to have a mix of varying reviews and if anyone comments on anything go back to them with a positive comment. If anyone seems to be particularly unhappy ask them to call the salon and take the comments away from the review site. Travel sites give a great example of how to turn around what could potentially be a negative situation.

Potential clients may visit your website too. Is it up-to-date or does it look tired? Is your price list up-to-date? Clients can look at your pricelist online and if it hasn’t been updated for 18 months expect to pay the price on your website. It’s so important to keep pages up-to-date – team profiles should be constantly updated, there’s no point in selling a super stylist if they left six months ago. Blogs are another thing – only have a blog on your website if you are keeping it up-to-date. Regular blogging helps with your SEO and no one wants to read a blog from a year ago. Create a blogging schedule and get everyone in the salon involved to make it interesting and up-to-date for clients to read.

If you encourage clients to book online, make sure your booking service is efficient and effective. If clients call the salon to make an appointment make sure that the call is friendly and accurate. Little things that don’t work smoothly can very quickly change a client’s impression.

….And all of this takes place before the client walks into the salon! Make sure your first impression, whatever it is, leaves a positive and long lasting impression.

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