Goodbye Lockdown, Hello Summer
Individuals everywhere are ready to ditch the lockdown lifestyle and embrace a summer of socializing. And as more of us kiss our pineapple buns and sweatpants goodbye, the economy is bracing for an upswing.
After last year’s economic decline—the largest drop in 74 years—many economists now predict that 2021 will be “the biggest boomtime in a generation.” Some estimates project a 6.4% economic growth this year in the US, while the global personal care services market is expected to grow 3.7%. And you won’t want your business to miss out!
That economic upturn is already being reflected in the growing revenue of spas and salons. Zenoti’s data shows a 4-6% month-on-month increase in our customers’ revenue from January 2021. Consumers are ready to spend money seeing their family and friends again and look their best while doing so.
We’re all craving personal contact. And not just with our loved ones. We want to be pampered again by expert service providers. In fact, as people return to salons and spas, they’re spending more than before at their appointments. Zenoti’s month-over-month analysis of our customers’ sales between the first quarters of 2019 and 2021 showed that the average ticket size has increased 15-20% this year.
This is great news and clearly shows the wellness and beauty industry is recovering from the pandemic.
So, prepare your salon or spa for the post-pandemic beauty boom by expanding your focus beyond just welcoming guests back and maximizing your influence as the beauty experts everyone knows and loves.
Keep reading for our insider tips on how to guide your guests through their transitions back to normal life and routines. We’ll cover how to:
- Boost brand awareness.
- Send out relevant communications.
- Prepare for increased bookings.
- Guide guests through their new routines.
- Utilize digital solutions to save time.
- Grow a loyal following.
Get Creative to Boost Brand Awareness
This past year allowed us to collectively take a break and reset our lives. Many learned to re-prioritize self-care, while others found relief from the never-ending personal grooming and beauty expectations. In the pandemic's aftermath, you now have a unique opportunity to reach both groups with new messages and grow your customer base.
Brands took to digital spaces to communicate with their customers throughout 2020 as in-store foot traffic drastically declined. One study shows that 67% of consumers prefer brand communications via email, while 45% prefer social media. Even though brands flooded people with emails throughout the pandemic, 73% of those surveyed said they were “never, rarely or only occasionally annoyed by the emails.”
The number of email users and their receptiveness to receiving emails from brands will probably continue to grow. Pair this advantage with your service providers’ insider knowledge. Create informative marketing campaigns to:
- Educate your guests on proper body, hair and skincare methods and regimes.
People have tried so many new DIY beauty and self-care products at home that most are ready to start over with a clean slate. Take this as an opportunity to help your customers re-establish their routine in ways that you and your team—the beauty pros—recommend.
One of the best ways to attract new guests and nurture your relationship with existing guests is through consistent, personalized engagement. Advanced automated marketing systems, designed specifically for spas and salons, can help you here. Or send out targeted social media ads in seconds with ezAds, a simple do-it-yourself advertising tool.
Stand Out with Your Communications
Whether they’re repeat or first-time customers, what you’re saying and how you’re delivering your marketing messages can entice people to choose your salon. Take your messages beyond email inboxes and into the primary form of modern communication—texting.
With the right text messages, you can create human connections with your guests in real-time, making them feel even more valued. And when people feel valued, they’re more likely to give you positive feedback and ratings and refer you to their family and friends.
So, what texts should you be sending?
Quick, personalized messages work best. Try friendly appointment reminders or tips for getting the most out of their treatments, help your guests reschedule quickly if they need, or even alert them to new promotions. Treating your guests like the VIPs they are and instantly communicating with them doesn’t have to be hard. You just need the right tool.
We're busy working on the perfect solution to help you achieve this! ezConnect will enable you to communicate even easier with guests.
Plus, don’t forget to take advantage of the power of social sharing. Leverage all the events that will happen, like summer weddings and music festivals, and encourage your guests to tag you on social media while they flaunt that new hairdo. Reposting your client’s photos from social media platforms like Instagram helps bring your brand to life in authentic, fresh ways.
Also read: social media marketing for salons
Prepare for High Volumes of Bookings
With borders reopening, offices welcoming back workers, postponed social events ramping up, and festivals back in the calendar, the incentives for booking appointments keep growing.
Simply put, being presentable matters again.
Nearly half of Americans said they “let themselves go” while in lockdown. Now, after a year of virtual meetings and appointments, everyone wants to put their best face forward. Which equals more appointments for haircuts, manis/pedis, facials, massages, and more.
Besides an increasing desire to look and feel better, hesitancy about getting luxury “high touch” services is decreasing. More states and businesses are lifting their mask mandates and capacity restrictions. 60% of Americans say going to salons, barber shops, or spas carries a minor risk, or no risk at all, according to a May 2021 survey by Ipsos. And in another survey, 54% of Americans say they’re ready to visit a spa for wellness treatments. The conclusion?
Guests are finally coming back for services, like massages and facials, that were considered too much of a risk during the peak of the pandemic.
Overall, individuals are eager for their post-pandemic glow-up and are booking all kinds of beauty services “from eyebrow threading and hairstyling to mani-pedis and cosmetic injections.”
So, as this summer bursts with events to attend, from weddings and family reunions to vacations and birthday parties, make sure your systems are ready for the rush of new and returning customers.
Zenoti can help you implement the industry’s latest tech solutions to keep up with your increased bookings. Zenoti Go gives your front desk and guests the booking convenience they expect and SmartShifts ensures you always have enough employees on shift when you need them.
Help Guests Re-establish Their Self-Care Routines
Some of your guests may already be back in the swing of their pre-pandemic visits. But there’s a high chance that most are still trying to re-establish their beauty and hair routines. Those services that plummeted in demand during lockdown, like hair removal and pedicures, are having a major comeback moment.
Help them find their footing by creating an unforgettable guest experience at your spa or salon.
Start by giving them the valuable support they’re craving. Coming out of the pandemic, many people may feel self-conscious about their looks again. Considering that we’ve been living our lives behind screens for the past 18 months, it’s understandable. People are bound to have mixed emotions about re-entering society, reintroducing themselves in person, and reinstating beauty maintenance that didn’t really matter when we lived life from the “waist up” over Zoom. The solution?
Position yourselves as the friendly, non-judgmental beauty experts.
Guide guests on establishing their post-COVID beauty routines. Introduce them to new products, recommend the latest hair and makeup styles, or highlight innovative industry glow-up tips. Work to translate all of this advice across your entire business from your marketing campaigns to your services to the products you sell.
Deliver stellar services and an inviting, pampering ambience that reminds your customers why they love visiting you so much. When it comes to in-person shopping and services, one survey reports that 90% of customers would be more likely to return if they have a positive in-location experience, while 60% said they’d spend more at a store that provides a positive experience versus one that doesn’t.
Now’s the time to rethink your service menu and infuse it with fresh offerings. After being cooped up so long, your guests are probably more willing to try new self-care trends they might not have previously considered. What can you offer them?
And don’t forget to update the products on your shelves! Natural and organic skincare products and cosmetics are predicted to grow in global market value from 4.75 billion dollars in 2019 to 7.2 billion dollars by 2024. Plus, the anti-aging market is estimated to grow 7% annually through 2026 from its current worth of $58.5 billion.
At-home wellness and self-care also boomed during the pandemic when spas and salons were closed. 47% of Americans reported that their preferred form of self-care is at-home spa treatments. Even though salons are opening back up, 69% of people are still planning to do more self-care in 2021 than last year. Make your store their new go-to for stocking up on the latest home spa, hair and skincare treatments.
Continue to Embrace Digital Solutions
Don’t expect touchless technology to disappear along with COVID fears. The pandemic forced many businesses to go digital. Now that consumers have adapted to highly digital retail and service experiences, they won’t want to go back to the old “pen and paper” ways.
The National Retail Federation reports that 57% of consumers who made a digital, contactless payment in a store for the first time last year said, “they would likely continue once the pandemic has subsided.” The best business strategy is to keep the momentum going by wowing your guests with innovative tech.
Make sure you’re taking advantage of the latest cutting-edge tech to stay ahead of your competition and top-of-mind with guests. For example:
- With a mobile POS experience your service providers can streamline business operations while enhancing the customer experience in modern ways.
- Today’s consumers expect to use their mobile phones for every interaction. Eliminate lines and paperwork with seamless consumer and employee mobile apps.
- Meet your guests online and grow your digital presence with a branded webstore that serves customers 24/7.
- Access real-time insights that increase growth and efficiency for your salon or spa.
Build a Loyal Following
When we look our best, we usually feel our best too. And people haven’t felt this good in a long time. It’s essential that you harness that “look good, feel great” power to increase your customer retention through memberships and loyalty programs.
One study reports that just a 5% increase in customer loyalty can increase the average profit per customer by 24-100%. And 83% of people are more likely to continue doing business with your brand when you offer loyalty programs.
The benefits of having loyal customers are proven. They will:
- Pay more for your services.
- Consider your recommendations for new products or services.
- Give you a second chance if they experience any issues.
- Refer your services and brand to family and friends.
- Provide valuable feedback that helps you strengthen your business.
Ensure guests keep coming back to you for their ongoing glow-up treatments by incentivizing them with memberships and loyalty programs.
Read more: 3 benefits of salon online booking
Embrace the Glow Up with Confidence
Collectively, the wellness and beauty industry has never gone through what we experienced this past year. Our guests and the latest technology are ready to help the beauty and wellness industry bounce back stronger than ever through the beauty boom and beyond.
Embrace this unique time as an opportunity to guide guests through their post-pandemic glow-up and help shape their new beauty regimes. Your guests are ready to get back in the chair. Make sure you’re ready to give them the glow up they deserve.