Social Media: The Game Changer
I am by no means a social media powerhouse just yet, however with what small strides I have made I have managed to change my entire business and subsequently change my entire life.
Let's talk about some tips and the results.
Picture Taking. Seems simple right? It's actually the hardest part. You'll rack your brain trying to figure out how to showcase your work best. The biggest variable is going to be your light source. I truly prefer taking pictures next to the big window in my salon. I love the natural light and the way it allows you to still see every piece of detail in your color. I feel like the ring light really washes everything out because it adds a shine glare across everything. It's great for making your colors look shiny however when you've done a super dimensional balayage and it turns out looking like an ombre in a picture, it can kind of break your heart.
The other thing that can put a damper on my photoshoots, is the weather. Oddly enough, the type of natural lighting makes a huge difference in the quality of your photo. Too much direct light and it's a mess. If a storm rolls in and it's dark and cloudy, it's a mess.
I can't tell you how frustrating it can be to be at the mercy of the weather. I usually will end up using the ring light when the clouds move in, but to be honest with you those tend to be my least favorite pictures that I take. I just feel like the detail is lost.
If you don't get a good picture, cut your losses. A bad photo of hair can deter business.
Another key tip... If your work is poorly styled, it won't look good no matter what lighting you have access to. Take the time to finish your work. If you don't have time in your busy schedule, then ask your client to come back on another day to take photos.
Engage with others. Who doesn't love to get a like or a comment on their work? If you want to build a following, accept that social media is a part time job. You will spend hours on Instagram.
Turn your page into a business page. Track your audience and find out when the best time to post is.
Hashtag. Hashtag with a purpose. Who do you want to see your work? Local people or hair pages(for features).
After I became serious about social media, everything changed. I would say that ALL of my new business comes from Instagram. Instagram is the reason I have a healthy balayage business now. It's the reason I was able to become a specialist and not go broke after getting rid of 40% of my business. Not only will you get new clients, but it puts you in a position where you get to screen your new incoming clientele. Consult with them before they're even in your chair. Decide if this is a project you want to be a part of. When clients have already seen your work, follow you, are familiar with you etc they are so much easier to work with. They trust you. You will begin attracting "dream clients". The people who sit down and say "I know you know best and I trust you, do whatever you want." If you do get someone inquiring about a hair appointment and they don't seem like a good fit, you can tell them right then and there.
Be the boss of your business. Never feel at the mercy of your client. A consultation is an interview.
Hand selecting your business changes everything. I have 0 clients that are difficult or that I don't look forward to. My work morale has changed. I used to run out of the salon as soon as my last client was done checking out. Now I don't even mind lingering. I love being there. I love what I do, every second of it. I'm the boss and I'm in control and it's because I took control of my business. That kind of attitude only adds to your appeal and your clients will love you because of how passionate you are about them.
The numbers? My service sales have increased over 20% in just 6 months. Why wouldn't you want to give yourself that kind of raise? Taking social media seriously was the best thing I ever did for my career.