Courting the Recessionista

Sometimes a clever word phrase can spawn a whole new marketing campaign. Earlier this year, Karie Bennett, owner of Atelier SalonSpa, in San Jose, California, ran across the description of a recessionista in an online fashion magazine:

“A recessionista is a person who is able to find a great deal while still managing to look stylish. A recessionista is that modern marvel who is a magnet for a good deal. And in this economy, she’s got a lot to teach us.”

Bennett took the phrase and made it her own. If she has more than six appointments open on one day, she’ll send an early morning Recessionista e-blast to her client base offering 20-percent off same-day appointments. 
 
“It’s hugely popular,” says Bennett. “I’ll send them out at 8 a.m. and by noon the appointments will be booked. But I only do it every few weeks, and I do it sporadically because I don’t want clients to stop pre-booking.”

For her part, Bennett says she’s just helping out clients who are in a tough spot in this economy without giving away services. “Getting an upscale service at an upscale salon for a discounted price is like finding a Louis Vuitton in a consignment store.”