So this is not about hair, this is about business. Local businesses, small businesses and mini businesses.
I am what I consider a mini business. I do not have my own store front, I have no employees, and I do not own my own salon. I am a one woman business renting a small space in a big salon which in the world of business makes me feel I am classified as a mini business.
This does not mean I don't market like a full small business has the opportunity too. I use my website and blog obviously, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Linked in., Google +, Pinterest and word of mouth.
I think a lot of small businesses and mini businesses don't realize the opportunities out there to bring new clientele in. I think it seems overwhelming to set it up and then manage it all. The great thing is that a lot of the sites link to each other so for instance, when I update my blog it posts to Twitter and Facebook at one time if I want. Pinterest can spread word of mouth simply by uploading a picture of your business or service and people see it, like it and pin it. It's virtually free advertising. Now if you don't know much about building webpages it can seem daunting but there are a lot of websites, free even that make it really easy to just drag and drop things you want on your site. The one this website lives at is called Weebly, for me it is the best I have found. There are companies out there that will charge you monthly or yearly fees to build you a website but I found these all look very generic and lack some of the salon's real personality.
For those of you that don't know that in a previous life I was a QA Engineer which means I tested computer software so therefore I am pretty geeky and love working on this stuff. I also love being able to help friends set their social media foot print up and get it all in line and as perfect as possible. Maybe it's nostalgia.
Here are a few rules I live by and maybe have mentioned in previous blogs.
1. Do not bomb your followers with posts trying to sell them something. When I see people post numerous times a day selling to me it makes me want to unlike the page or hide the feeds. I want to be reminded that you are out there and how your small business is doing but I don't want it to be shoved in my face. I try to post something once a day and most the time I try to post something useful, a hair tip, makeup tip or of course like this post a business tip. The business tips are not the ones that get my site the most hits but I feel like if I can make one more small business aware of the opportunities to build your business it is worth the low hits one day.
2. Go back and read your posts, edit and make sure it make sense to you and says what you had intended. Hell even after I do that a few times before hitting enter I still sometimes miss something but I try.
3. Add a picture. When possible I try to add a picture because people like quick and visual and a picture is more memorable. Look at the success alone from Pinterest, Instagram, Vine and other picture sites. If nothing else when you post it to facebook it will look different then every other post flying by on peoples newsfeed.
4. This one is probably obvious but you might want to keep your religious and political beliefs off your business sites unless of course that's part of your business. I try to think of all the opposing people's business I could be losing by the things I believe. For me my business is about my business not about my personal beliefs.
5. Try to keep it positive and upbeat. Money is tight in our economy and you are probably tired like we all are but I will tell you when I hear people complaining about how broke they are and exhausted it makes me think...is that what I want to talk about the whole time? Or is she too tired to give me a good service?
6. Most important...Site your sources! If you use a picture, give credit to the person who took it or posted it. There is a major buzz going around right now because people are using other peoples pictures of makeup, hair and art and calling it their own. It is not the biggest form of flattery, it is the biggest stab in the back. I try to put links either on the picture when you click it or somewhere where I am talking about it. It's one of those internet etiquette things.
Now these are all just my opinions and you could say you are a loud mouth opinionated jerk that should stick to hair. Ehhh, I feel like if I have some helpful tips, hair or not to help my fellow small businesses out then the people who might be offended will get over it.
Signing off note, frequent your small businesses if you can, refer them to your friends if you feel you got great service and if you didn't look around some more. There are a lot of us out here looking to make our current and new customers happy.
Thanks and have a great day!
Hey I needed a picture! Found this in the bathroom of a little divey tavern in Enumclaw, WA. Not what I would expect to find there but ok. Something to catch the eye here!
what's this for?
I find so many things I love out on The Internet and I want a place to share it. Trends, tips, and hopefully some fun stuff too!