More industry thought leaders are turning to podcasts, Instagram, TikTok and Clubhouse to build their online communities. With the rise of social media, it may feel as though there isn't a market for blogs anymore. But Freddy Razo, a California-based barber disagrees. Big time.
“Blogging is a meaningful way to connect with your stylist, and it lets us expand on conversations we have with clients while they’re in our chairs,” he shares.
Razo was looking for a creative outlet during the pandemic. While others were painting or bread baking, he wanted a hobby that would challenge his mind. Before social media was popular, blogs were a way to follow someone and stay informed – and he felt ready to revive this medium. After a month of preparation, “Stay Sharp with Razo” was born.
He began by sharing the blog with a few friends – and then those friends sent it to their friends. “Suddenly, one day people were messaging me on Instagram asking how they could find my blog. The growth was all very organic.” What started as a fun project with no goal in mind became a business essential, and the risk paid off.
For hair pros and salons, sharing on social media is a necessity, and that won’t change any time soon. But maintaining a blog or newsletter, if you feel called to it, opens new doors in your marketing strategy. Here are three things to keep in mind as you launch a blog and fold it in to your community.
1. Find your niche.
While Instagram and TikTok are overrun with talent, blogging is ripe for fresh voices. “I use my background for material,” Razo says, “So the content on my website is all about hair and personal experiences.”
Despite the many forms of education available in the hair industry, there’s incentive to put your unique voice out into the world. Maybe you have a hidden talent for salon design, or maybe you’ve got a technique for lightening curly hair that everyone needs to see. Whatever your expertise, there’s a community eager to hear more from you.
For Razo, his niche involves drawing back the curtain. “My content is for my clients. I want people to see who I am and where I’m coming from. I’m always very focused on who’s sitting in my chair and who’s in front of me, and I don’t often speak about myself. But this is a way I can let people into my world.”
2. Offer something valuable.
Offer your reader something truly valuable that they can only get from you. Razo suggests using your blog to expand on the styling tips you share during appointments.
“If your client is too busy or they have to leave quickly, your blog is a resource to continue conversation,” Razo explains. “You can direct them to your page on how to style their hair or an at-home technique, and you can constantly be referring people to examples they can reference later.”
3. Keep the conversation going.
Maintaining a blog is playing the long game. But the goal is to build long term relationships and communicate with clients or fellow educators in a way that isn’t possible within an Instagram story or caption.
Blogging keeps you learning. You must stay on top of industry trends, sharpen your writing skills, and engage in self-reflection. With every new post, you are growing. And it goes without saying that running an active blog will help your SEO (Search Engine Optimization) immensely. Having a blog shows that your “store’s lights are turned on.”
According to Razo, the hardest part of maintaining a blog or newsletter is finding the momentum to keep it going. He suggests to “put ideas in notes or a Google doc, wherever is most accessible to you, and find a groove that gets your thoughts out creatively and thoroughly.”
After you’ve written some posts, send them out in a newsletter to your most trusted clients, or share with friends to family. “Be open to the feedback,” he reminds us. “Ultimately what you write won’t be for everyone. But your audience will come to you.”
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