Social media has fundamentally changed the way salons communicate with their customers. What used to be a one-way dialogue has become a two-way conversation, a great channel that allows a salon to receive both positive and negative feedback they can use to improve their products and services.
Back in the day, salons used to reach customers via different media formats: newspaper, radio, TV and billboards. All of these remain popular advertising channels; however, none make it easy to track their ROI. How many customers ended up buying a product because of a specific marketing campaign? How many customers first learned about a lotion on the radio? How many saw a specific newspaper ad? It’s a guessing game at best.
With the advent of social media, marketing now has a totally different reach and return. Social media allows for a true connection between the salon and the customer, where both can communicate with one another. It is one of the best examples of a true win-win situation: the customer can give his opinion and receive a response, while the salon gets to dive deep into customer care and assess its overall performance.
Hashtags are invaluable for assessing content on your social media channels. Twitter first popularized the use of the hashtag, and this method of tracking has become so popular that it was taken up by most other social networks; nowadays Instagram, Vine and Facebook are unimaginable without the hashtag. A hashtag is a way of making content discoverable simply by setting a # sign in front of a short phrase, tagline or single word. If, for example, you are looking to find posts about Nike, you should start by seeking out hashtags such as #nike and #justdoit, but you can also consider more generic ones such as #sports, #fitness, #hitthegym, and so on.
Some ways hashtags can be useful:
Add a Hashtag to Your Social Activity
Hashtags can either be created by average users or by salons themselves to support their specific campaigns. Some people have created hashtags and set new trends by accident. But salons with a large following should develop their own specific hashtags as a way to create traction around their salon brand.
Managing a hashtag is not just about putting it out there and adding it to all your future posts. Think of it the other way — search for it and see who is using it and do not hesitate to engage in a thread created by someone else. You will be surprised how grateful the average customer will be when their post is liked and commented on by the salon they mention. Or how impressed they will be by a prompt and helpful response from your customer service department to their posted complaint. These are the kinds of things that get people talking about your company online, and that can result in great PR for you if handled properly. ■
Helios Software President Robert Cochrane has been developing software & marketing
automation solutions for 27 years. Contact Robert with questions about Helios or the New Sunshine Marketing HUB at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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