Ask the Experts: Technology and Social MediaWhat are some specific tips that salons can use to build their social media presence?

>> “Building your salon’s social media presence begins with two key elements—a base knowledge of social platforms, and a strategy that fits with your salon’s business goals,” says Kelly Ehlers, president of Evoke Brand Strategies and blogger for MODERN.

“Using social media for your business gives you the opportunity to have a dialogue with your target audience on a daily basis. It’s important to keep the conversation light and fun, and vary the content. You don’t need 5,000 followers to make an impact—with social media, quantity does not equal quality. Having 40 dedicated, active followers can be more valuable than many unengaged followers. Social media is a new communication medium and a game changer for how stylists and salons develop and strengthen relationships with clients.”

 

Ask the Experts: Technology and Social MediaHow do you suggest stylists use QR codes?

>> “I don’t use a business card anymore, I use a QR code,” says Patrick McIvor, Matrix artistic director and social media guru. People shove business cards in their pocket and lose it or wash it or forget it. But when someone scans your QR code they have all your information and you know it’s all entered correctly and they won’t lose it. “

QR codes give our clients a reason to brag about us. We asked each of our team members to pick their favorite retail product and record a two- or three-minute video on their smartphone of why they liked it and how to use it at home. Post the video to YouTube, copy the URL, then go to a website that allows you to make free QR codes—I like i-nigma.com. It puts it right into your photo library and you can print QR stickers that you can put right on the bottle.

“At home your guest can pull up a video and see their stylist describing how to use the product. And, it’s absolutely free.”

 

Is it better to have one or multiple staffers contributing to a salon’s social media presence?

>> “We get asked this question a lot and the answer depends on the team members and the culture in the salon,” says Valorie Reavis, Linkup Marketing specialist. “From the social media purist perspective, it’s best to have multiple people contributing to the overall social media efforts. You get multiple voices, a larger audience and ultimately greater exposure and engagement with your network. However, it can be difficult to teach accountability and the difference between personal social networking and professional.

“If you want to venture down the path of a multi-person policy, make sure to make it just that—a policy. If there aren’t guidelines in place and leadership for the initiative you could find yourself with too many different messages about your salon. Similar to your professional education, you need to consistently meet and discuss campaigns, initiatives and results to be successful.

“Whether you want multiple staffers or just one, or even outsourced, make sure you are monitoring the results with a social media management tool.”