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7 Most Effective Ways to Get New Clients into Your Salon or Spa

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning I get a small comission if you decide to make a purchase through my links, at no cost to you. Learn more..

Your ability to continuously attract new salon clients will ultimately determine your success as salon or spa owner.

It doesn’t matter how talented you and your staff is at the craft.

You need clients.

The more clients you have, the more you can maximize your staff and rent cost.

The more clients you have, the more you can increase the prices you charge for your services.

Simply put, the more clients you have, the more profit you’ll make.

But you know this already..

Otherwise you wouldn’t be reading this.

If you’re looking for the best ways to attract new salon clients, you’ve come to the right place.

In this article, I’ll summarize the most effective ways to attract new salon and spa clients right now. If you implement these strategies, you can change your business forever. Salon and spa businesses can be highly profitable. But it all starts with understanding how to effectively attract new salon clients. 

I hope you’re ready for it.

Let’s dive straight into the salon client acquisition strategies. 

Get More Salon Clients and Grow Your Salon's Profit

Use the ideas and strategies on this page in conjunction with these tools to get more salon clients and boost your profit.

  1. Square Point of Sale: The best POS system and salon management tool (free)
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  4. Canva Brand Design: Design marekting material (social media images, posters, business cards, and more..) and get printed versions delivered to your doorstep (free and pro plan available)
  5. Constant Contact Email Marketing: Build client loyalty with a professional salon newsletter from the best email provider for local businesses (free 30 day trial)
  6. Amazon Business: Get access to professional-only products at lower prices on Amazon (free)
  7. Fundera Business Loan Comparison: Compare salon financing options you never knew you had (free and won't affect your credit score)

1. Run Facebook & Instagram Ads Designed to Build Salon Clientele

Facebook ads is the most effective way to attract new salon clients.

Full stop.

Really? ..You might think.

I’m not talking about boosting a facebook post here. I mean proper implementation of a facebook ads strategy for a salon.

I’m sure you’ve done some type of facebook marketing before. But Facebook marketing can be useless if done incorrectly or it can generate new clients like crazy, at very little cost, if done right.

As a salon owner, you don’t need to be the perfect marketeer at everything. But investing a bit of time to truly understand Facebook ads can be a game changer for you. If I’d recommend you to learn one skill outside your core profession, this would be it. Or if you run a bigger salon, I’d advice you to put a part of your marketing budget with a good Facebook ads agency to help you.

You can typically find an agency to help you for about $1’000 and up/month. If you’re a smaller salon and don’t have that money, you can learn how to do good Facebook ads for salon on your own. It’s not difficult but requires you to spend a bit of time to learn.

Check out my guide to Facebook ads for beginners here.

Hair Salon Facebook Ad Example

Hair salon facebook ad example

2. Get on Top of Google with “Pay-Per-Click” Ads Targeted to New Salon Clients

What’s easiest:

Selling popcorn to someone walking up to a kiosk to buy popcorn or selling popcorn to a person who’s watching a football game together with friends?

Both are of course possible. But I’m sure you’ll agree with me that it’s easier to sell popcorn to someone who’s looking to buy popcorn.

This is like Google Ads vs. Facebook Ads.

When you’re promoting your salon with Google Ads, you’re putting your ad in front of people when they are searching for salons in your area. This means they already have an intent to book a salon, they’re just trying to figure out which one to choose.

This is powerful.

In fact, when you do a search for a salon on Google today, all you see “above the fold” is ads and the map today. With above the fold I mean what you see without needing to scroll. You really want to be visible here. The image below shows what I’m talking about. 

To learn how you can get your salon or spa on the map, you can read my article on how to get your salon at the top of Google here

2. Get on Top of Google with “Pay-Per-Click” Ads Targeted to New Salon Clients

What’s easiest:

Selling popcorn to someone walking up to a kiosk to buy popcorn or selling popcorn to a person who’s watching a football game together with friends?

Both are of course possible. But I’m sure you’ll agree with me that it’s easier to sell popcorn to someone who’s looking to buy popcorn.

This is like Google Ads vs. Facebook Ads.

When you’re promoting your salon with Google Ads, you’re putting your ad in front of people when they are searching for salons in your area. This means they already have an intent to book a salon, they’re just trying to figure out which one to choose.

This is powerful.

In fact, when you do a search for a salon on Google today, all you see “above the fold” is ads and the map today. With above the fold I mean what you see without needing to scroll. You really want to be visible here. The image below shows what I’m talking about. 

To learn how you can get your salon or spa on the map, you can read my article on how to get your salon at the top of Google here

Google advertising for hair salons

It’s a bit more expensive to use Google Ads but that is also because it works so well. With Google Ads, you’re also limited to the number of people looking for salons while on Facebook your audience is endless. However, if your salon is based in a decently sized town, the number of people searching for spas and salons is typically not a limitation.

Google Ads is also easier to get going with than Facebook Ads so it’s a good place to start for beginners. You can learn more about Google Ads on Google’s website here.

If you run a bigger salon business and want me to help you manage your Google Ads, you can send me a request here and I’ll come back to you as soon as possible.  

3. Enable the Features on Your Salon Website That Get More Salon Clients to Book You  

Your website should be like a well-trained 24/7 salon receptionist.

It should make all visitors feel welcome and as if they just landed in the right place. It should provide the experience your salon stands for, make sure the new client get all the information she needs, and book her for the first appointment with you. 

But many salon websites fail here. 

I often see salon websites that are just like a pretty leaflet, describing the salon, but doesn’t get visitors to book an appointment. Or even worse, it delivers a poor user experience (slow load time, not mobile friendly, outdated visuals etc.) and visitors leave before they’ve even had the chance to get to know you.

As a salon owner, you cannot tolerate this. You’re leaving too much on table.

Your website is your salon’s online hub.

That’s where all your other salon marketing and promotional efforts come together and turn it into new salon clients.

Luckily, it’s not difficult to fix this. And you can do it yourself or using and agency. Just check out my other article that takes you through a step-by-step guide for how you can create a professional and effective website for your salon yourself

Example of a Good Hair Salon Website

Top hairdresser website example

Find more examples of great hair salon website in my post where I list the top salon websites.

4. Incentivize Word-of-Mouth Recommendations From Salon Clients

A loyal client is the best promotor of your salon.

I’m sure you’ve noticed this already.

In fact, even salons and spas that don’t have a deliberate strategy for acquiring new salon clients typically claim that the reason they still manage to build a salon is because of word of mouth referrals. 

But imagine if you’d put in place a system that incentivise your loyal clients to refer new clients. Honestly, this is the best way you can can build your salon brand.

There are two specific strategies I’d suggest you implement here:

  1. Get your clients to leave online ratings & reviews after their visit
  2. Reward clients who bring in new clients to your salon.

How to Get Online Rating & Reviews for Your Salon or Spa

Salon rating & reviews are typically posted on your Google My Business page, Facebook page, and your  Website. There are of course many other places (Yelp etc.) but these are the most common ones.

They are critical for you. Good ratings on Google My Business will ensure your salon show up with 4 or 5 star reviews when people look for salons in your area. Just getting this in place can completely change the flow of new salon clients you get through your door via search and your website.

The best way to get ratings for your salon is simply to ask your customer. However, we sometimes forget this and it may also feel awkward at times.

This is why you should automate it. 

If you’re using a good salon software, this will take care of it for you. It will send a notification to your client after they check out from your salon to ask them to rate you. This works very well as they just have their experience fresh in mind and are excited about their new nails or hair.

You can read my review of the best salon software right now here in case you don’t think your current solution have this feature. If you’re unsure which one to go for I typically recommend Versum as it has all features you need and is super intuitive to use. You can access an exclusive discount on Versum here as well. 

How to Setup a Client Referral Program for Your Salon or Spa

A client referral program is a way to incentivize your salon clients to get new clients for you. I’m sure you’re already getting new salon clients through the door based on referrals today but placing an incentive to this can make a big difference. 

New clients who come in based on referral are also more likely to become loyal clients. So it’s worth investing a bit here.

Make you offer to your client referring attractive. Not a 10% discount on next visit – this is too small. Try to make it something where they feel it’s really worth the effort. Remember, clients coming in on referral are more likely to become loyal. And how much is a loyal customer worth to you?

If you can, make the offer on both sides. If your client is able to give some specific value to the person they are referring, the likely hood that they will refer goes up even further. 

Also when it comes to referrals, a good salon software can help manage all the tracking and client notifications for you. This will make your life much easier. The Versum salon software manages this as part of their Loyalty Program Feature (you can get your discount here).  

5. Define an Influencer Strategy That Attract New Clients to Your Salon 

Like it or not.

Influencer marketing is how most of “famous” salons, hair stylists, and nail techs have achieved their position.

It simply works.

People do trust what people they follow on social media say. It may be enough that you get one influential person in your chair that posts about her visit to fill your books for weeks after. 

But how can you achieve this?

Having a strategy for your salon or spa for how you work with influencers must be a priority for you. 

Promote Your Salon or Spa Using Micro Influencers

Micro influencers should be your focus.

These are people with 30k followers or less on their social channels. Ideally with their audience in the area of your salon.

People in fact listen more to micro influencers than the big ones. As they have a smaller following they typically also have a stronger relationship with their audience. And if they recommend something, people follow.

At the same time, you can get a micro-influencer to post about your salon at little or even zero cost. Just by treating them well and maybe through in some free bonuses you could get them to write about your salon.

So next time you have a new client coming into your salon, make sure to look up there social profile first and if they have a 1,000+ following with good engagement (likes & comments), you may want to consider doing something extra to get them to post about you.

Influencer marketing for salons

Bigger, Paid, Influencer Partnerships for Your Salon or Spa

You can get lucky also with bigger influencers.

Like micro influencers, they may write about you without getting anything in return.

But it it’s rare these days.

The guys with 100k+ engaged followers know their worth. They know that just one post from them recommending your salon can get you a week of bookings.

But if they have large following, it typically goes beyond the geographic area of your salon. Thus, you might be paying for attention of people that anyway couldn’t come to your salon. 

Working with bigger paid partnership can be a good idea if you run a salon chain with nation wide coverage or if you’re also building a brand that goes beyond your salon – this could be with your own product line or an eCommerce store. Otherwise, I would focus on working with the smaller, local, micro influencers.

How to Make the Influencer Collaboration Effective for Your Salon

So you have an influencer posting about your salon?

Awesome.

But how do you turn that post into salon bookings for you?

Let’s go through a few simple steps you can take. These steps assumes the influencer uses Instagram but the same principle would apply to any platform.

  1. Make sure the influencer is linking to you by @mentioning you or your salon in their caption.
  2. Ask them to check-in to you salon when posting.
  3. If you have salon specific hashtags, see if they can use one of them as well. This might be pushing it though. Having them @metion your salon is the most important part, hashtags is just a bonus.
  4. On your salon’s instagram account, make sure you have a good bio that captures the attention of visitors to your profile but more importantly link back to your salon website. You can read my article on how to craft a good Instagram bio for salons here.
  5. Have some good posts on your profile from your salon and make sure there are also some good posts about your salon on the check-in location. For ideas, you can also read my post about how you create good instagram posts and captions for salons here.
  6. The steps above will help you capture the benefit of the influencer post by directing visitors to your website. Final step is (not surprisingly) to make sure you have a salon website that is effective at converting visitors into salon clients. Here’s another simple guide I’ve created to help you create an effective salon website. It goes without saying that you should also be prepared with an online salon booking system (best ones listed here) to capture new bookings immediately.

6. Get Your Salon Listed Where Potential New Clients Look for Salons

Imagine you’ve just moved to a new city.

And you realize you just need to get a pedicure. Now.

What do you do?

If you’re like most other people, you’d pull up your phone and look for nail salons in the area.

In most cases, this search would be done using Google. But there are several other places where people look for salons in your area.

Do you know which places are?

If not, you better get familiar with all local listing and make sure you get your site listed there so that people can find you.

But let’s go over the most common ones that you just need to be familiar with:

  1. Google: No doubt this is the most important place where your salon needs to show up. I’ve already told you how you can show up here using Google PPC ads. However, there are several free ways to do this as well. This is why I’ve written a full article that takes you through how you can get your salon to the top of Google which I strongly encourage you to read.
  2. Apple Maps: Most people have an iPhone today and use the map function to find salons near them. Are you showing up there? If not, get it done now. It’s completely free and you can do it on Apple’s website here.
  3. Facebook: Yes, people look for salon’s also on Facebook. Do you have a page for your salon where people can find you?
  4. Yelp, Yellow Pages: There are many more websites where you can register your business. First make sure you have the top 3 under control here. Next you can check out Yelp, Yellow Pages, and look for other local relevant directories to list your salon or spa.

7. Stop Waisting Time on Social Media. Make Sure That What You Do Will Bring You New Salon Clients 

Social media can your most powerful marketing tool.

But it’s easy to get stuck on it. Spending a lot of time without getting any real business value out of it. 

You need to be clear about how the work you’re putting into your social media will result in new clients. You need a strategy. Or chances are you, like many other salon or spa owners, are just spending a lot of time while getting minimal value out of it.

If you’re a bigger spa or salon, it can be a good idea to outsource your social media to an agency so that you can focus on your core business while capturing the tremendous value that social media can bring your business. If you don’t have the budget for that, you can learn yourself. 

I would recommend you to focus on Instagram first before you expand to other channels like Youtube, Pinterest, Facebook, Snapchat, or a blog. All have merit but Instagram is what I’ve seen most salons get success with fast.

To get you going, I recommend you read the below two articles:

Conclusion

Getting new salon clients is the lifeblood of any salon business. 

The strategies I’ve listed in this article are, to my knowledge, the most effective ways of getting new salon clients. Some are fast to implement and some require a bit more time to learn and get going with. But investing your time on learning those is a smart move.

If you’re just starting out, you may need some even quicker tactics. Although more short term, I have also listed some further ideas for you in my post how to build salon clientele fast.

Which of the strategies for getting new salon clients I have listed here have you already tried? Do you have any other tactics that are working well for you?

Let me know in the comments box below.

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