This week I will be sending out an email to my customers about our canned-food drive this month. This is an annual event in which we collect food items from our customers and deliver them to a local food pantry. Being able to send out an email blast to our customers really gets the word out. We use email often to update our clients of what’s going on at the shop such as planned vacations, holiday schedules, specials on products, new barbers joining, tips on hair care, and a host of other important information. If you’re a barber and want to stay connected with your clients then connecting to them via email is an effective channel to use. Customers have gone online these days and as barbers we have to be able to meet them there. If you are using email to help manage your customers make sure that you are sending out information weekly. You don’t want your emails to automatically be sent to your customers spam folder because their email account doesn’t recognize you as a relevant sender. Consistently provide useful information to your customers and be sure to monitor to see who’s opening your emails. A great tool that I use to do this is called Aweber. Aweber allows me to sort my customers into different categories, send out mass emails, and track stats to see who’s opening or clicking in my emails. If you haven’t began sending out emails then you should look into it.
Lets talk about social networking. Big companies like Facebook and Twitter have done an awesome job in bringing other people you know together online in a social graph. But have you ever wanted to skip through all those people and get to the community that you’re specifically interested in? Well, get ready because the social network community for barbers is now live at Successful Barber. Being able to visit a community strictly about what you’re interested in and networking with the people in it has powerful results for the users. I usually hear barbers say “we need to come together” and with Successful Barber we can do just that. I created the Successful Barber network to bring barbers together to one place where they can enhance their skill, learn from other barbers, improve their business, share their barber experience with other barbers, attract new business, and much more. The Successful Barber network has a great tool called the “Share-it Button” that lets you quickly share relevant content to the community while you’re browsing on the web. Whenever you see something relevant that you want to share just click the “Share-it Button” in your bookmarks and the content of the page will be shared to your community wall and news feed. Successful Barber lets you create a member account with a profile page and status wall. You can follow other barbers and subscribe to their feed. You can post, comment, like, and share content in the community to your other social networks like Facebook, Twitter, or Linked In. All in all Successful Barber is a great community to be apart of if you’re currently a barber, thinking about being a barber, or if you just like whats going on in the barber industry. Sign up, create a profile, and begin sharing at Successful Barber.
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Phone call after phone call after phone call… When you establish a steady customer base your phone will be ringing off the hook even during late night hours. I don’t blame my clients for calling me late at night for appointments because we develop semi-personal relationships with them and they feel comfortable with us. But sometimes I want to tell my clients to have a heart, however it’s all a part of the game. That is until I discovered Genbook, an online appointment scheduling system.
The Genbook appointment scheduling system is amazing and it’s the most convenient way to manage your customers and keep them happy. I highly recommend that every barber evolve to an online appointment system because it puts the customers in control and takes more stress and work off of us. My clients love being able to go in and set up an appointment whenever they need to whether its at 2pm or 2am. The Genbook system is very user friendly and has a lot of tools that you can use to track your business. The analytics give you the ability to see what services make you the most money, how much you average per appointment, and a few other important reports. I find this very helpful during tax season.
Another important feature this service does is capture the email address of everyone that sets an appointment. Once my clients set an appointment I add them to my email lists and that way I keep them up to date on every that’s going on with Mont da Barber.
I researched several other online appointment systems but nothing compared to Genbook which is priced pretty reasonably. What online appointment system do you use? Have you considered going online yet?
With all the apps that are available today you definitely need to add the Pics Art photo app to your arsenal. Of course there are a lot of different photo apps out there that can get the job done but I’ve been using Pics Art for a while now and I love it. It’s very user friendly from your mobile device and gives you a lot of different options for collages and color schemes. I also like the fact that it automatically sizes the photos to be compatible with Instagram which is another social media network that I use to get new customers. Check out my Facebook fan page at Mont da Barber to see some of the collages that I have put together. What are some of the pic apps that you have used before?
If you haven’t tried HootSuite then you are definitely missing out on money. For a small fee the HootSuite app allows you to post status updates to all of your social media networks from a single platform, so instead of logging in to 6 or more different accounts you can manage everything from HootSuite. In addition, this app gives you the ability to schedule posts so that they go out when you want them to. This is great on days when you’re working hard at the shop all day but you still want to engage people on your social network channels. Whenever our shop has a new special, a new barber, new information, or just something funny to post we always schedule it in Hootsuite to post automatically every 3-4 hours so that different people will see it throughout the day. People make comments, like us, or even call in to the shop to set up an appointment and that is where the value is in this app. When you can keep people engaged in your business it develops trust which leads to customers. So if you haven’t tried out Hootsuite just click on a link and come back to let me know how it works for you.
The power of social media! Did you know that Facebook is the second most visited website in the world according to Alexa.com? This means that almost everyone on the Internet has a Facebook account. With Facebook ads you have the power to place your business directly in front of the people that you want to service and if you haven’t already tried using Facebook ads to get new customers, its at least worth a go. I remember when I first stumbled upon this method it doubled my business in two months and the money that I spent to do this has returned itself ten times over. However, there are a few things I think you should know about if you’re going to use Facebook ads.
When you create a Facebook ad and a user clicks on it, it takes them to a landing page. This page can be wherever you want to take them to such as a Facebook photo gallery, outside website, or anywhere else on the Internet. I would highly recommend that you have your landing page be one with lots of pictures of your work. When a user clicks on the ad and goes directly to a photo album it gives you the opportunity to capture that persons interest to possibly get them to come and get a haircut.
Targeting customers is an important feature because it allows you to spend money only where your potential customers are on Facebook. You can target people based on age, sex, location, special interest, and more. For example, if your targeted customers likes Kanye West you can advertise to people who like him in your zip code between the ages of 15-25. This is so powerful to be able to target your customers so that you won’t waste money.
Setting a daily budget will be different for everyone. When I first began using Facebook ads I started with a $5 daily budget. Once the daily budget is used Facebook stops showing your ads until the next day. It is important to take note that when I began using Facebook ads it wasn’t as popular as it is now so you may need to increase your daily budget to make sure your ad gets the exposure it needs. This amount can be as little as $1 or as high as you want it to be. It is definitely worth the cost because one hair cut can cover the cost of many days of advertising and that’s not including that customer coming back for repeat business.
Promoting your services on Facebook in my book is the number one way of generating new business via Internet today, tomorrow it could change. So make sure you stay up to date with the latest online social sites in order to lead the pack in your market. What social sites have you used? How much success did you have with it?