For small local businesses, being selected as “best of” in a community newspaper or magazine can increase customer loyalty, attract new clients, and secure your spot as a staple of the community, and salons are no exception.
Nail tech Linda Sharp, the owner of Lark and Sparrow Salon in Atlanta, can attest to that. In 2016, Lark and Sparrow was named the best salon by Atlanta Magazine, a competition that was decided by the magazine’s editors, not its readers. The salon was also voted best salon by the readers of Creative Loafing, another local magazine, that same year. On a national scale, Lark and Sparrow was named by Allure magazine as the place for a “spotless paint job” in the city.
“The recognition helps with new clients searching for salons in the Atlanta area,” she says. “It increases our online search traffic. Also, with each win, we see an increase in social media traffic and followers — and with that, more appointments booked.”
So how did Sharp and her team rake in all these awards? Social media.
When it comes time for the annual “best of” voting process, Sharp and her team will post the link to the magazine’s voting portal on the salon’s Instagram and Facebook pages. “We’ve been using the same tactics each year, but we do have a strong Instagram presence,” she says. “We are known for our nail art, so we have people who follow us for that.”
Sharp says her salon doesn’t advertise the voting process in the salon, nor do they ask customers to write reviews; that’s why social media campaigns are so important.
Michelle Gerber, owner of Salon 119 Beauty & Spa in Palm Springs, Calif., agrees on the importance of having a strong social media presence. Her salon has been voted a “best of” by Palm Springs Life magazine four times.
Gerber says employees of the nail salon and day spa always promote within the business, in addition to posting on the salon’s social media pages and website.
Of course, when using social media as your main avenue of promotion, it’s important to have content that shows why your salon is worthy of being named the best.
“Do good work; be good at what you do,” advises Sharp, whose Lark and Sparrow Instagram page claims well over 2,000 followers. “Pay attention to your social media and keep it updated. Post clear and focused photos.
“I definitely think that you should have continuity. You should have a brand and stick to that.”