One of the most common misconceptions surrounding social media for business is that it’s a popularity contest. During most of the events and tradeshows I attend, teaching the ins and outs of social media for the industry, I find salon owners and stylists are always asking me how they can generate more ‘likes’ on their Facebook pages, more reviews on Google and more followers on Twitter. My response remains consistent in that it’s best to first focus on creating value vs. driving volume.
So, what exactly does that mean?
Think of it this way. Social media presents an opportunity to communicate with your customers daily, in a 1:1 format. It’s much like having the ability to pick up the phone, dial their number and askfor their feedback, invite them to an event, or even share the latest trends, deals or product information with them. Take yourself back to the old adage of ‘quality vs. quantity’ and focus on what type of information your clients want to see - and how they want to be communicated with. There’s no doubt that social media is an excellent resource for your salon to leverage, with limited investment.
A recent study from Mainstay Salire, an independent advisor to global high-tech companies, takes a look at the importance of local Facebook pages and the impact and engagement they have with their fans. The study reports that local Facebook pages (such as the ones you have for your salon community) report five times more reach and roughly 8 times more engagement per fan than the large-scale brand pages you may be accustomed to comparing your salon’s social media to. The good news is, not all Facebook pages are created equal and within the complex algorithms of Facebook, your salon page in many cases has more impact (although potentially far less followers) than a big brand page! You can chalk that up to a process called EdgeRank within Facebook that, in a nutshell, places ‘personally relevant’ pages (such as your salon page) with a higher value and news feed visibility in comparison to distant corporate brand pages.
If you go back in history and think of salonsas being the original ‘hub’ of what’s happening in your community, the concept today still rings true, but with a social, immediate twist. You can now share your front-row seat in your local community by highlighting what’s trendy, newsworthy and inspiring, not only within your salon, but also within your city. In the past, social conversations only happened with your clients perhaps once a month while they were in the chair…today, you can continue the conversation after they have left and develop a greater sense of communication through social media!