You’ve got a massive list of things to do (not least of which is servicing your clients). Somewhere on that list is most likely “coming up with new marketing ideas,” but it is not uncommon for marketing initiatives to remain a secondary priority.
So, to get the creative juices flowing, here are 15 marketing ideas that you can use now to grow your business.
Use Social Media to Tell a Story
You run a clinic, spa or salon with interesting team members, sophisticated devices and a location that is unique to you. So often, businesses in our industry produce stagnant, predictable imagery that – while attractive – doesn’t communicate the personality of the clinic to the public.
Use the pretty photos, but do so in moderation. Include images of your treatments, educational pieces (more on that shortly) and candid shots of your team going about their business. Let people get to know who you are. The power of social media is that you can open the door to your personality, culture and values.
Thanks to platforms like Google ads, Bing and Facebook, the days of advertising to anyone and everyone are over. Now, on a relatively small budget, you can advertise to your city, or even just your suburb.
Importantly, most localised advertising fails because it isn’t created with the potential client in mind. Remember to mention that you aren’t far from them, have serviced the local community for X years and even mention something that is relevant and timely in the local community. Specific localised ads are cheaper and more targeted, and done correctly can make an impact.
There is a reason that most of our industry replicates the same style of marketing materials. We assume (often wrongly) that our competition has done their homework and receives a good return on their investment.
While imitation is the best form of flattery, it’s often ineffective as a promotional initiative. Rather than duplicating, think of some ways you can stand out as a unique, individual voice in a sea of sameness. This might be in the form of an offer, powerful use of design, a treatment that is ahead of its time, or advertising, wording or copywriting that makes people pay attention.
Spend Money Based on Data
“What should we do?” is the most common problem faced by owners and managers when it comes to marketing. The answer is, you don’t know until you’ve tried a few things, but thanks to the analytics tools in all the major online platforms, you can see where you are getting the most engagement, clicks and purchases. Put some time aside each month to see what strategies yielded the best outcomes, and increase your efforts or costs to that strategy.
Additionally, if a particular offer or treatment is bringing people into the clinic, increase your advertising and promotion efforts in that area. Then, when you are analysing the data the following month, see if those efforts have paid off.
These days, our clients are incredibly sophisticated. They know what most of the treatments are, what they do and most often what they need. So, to position yourself as an expert, it’s important to have a robust educational component. Perhaps a blog on a specific topic, videos about certain conditions or treatments or even an e-book targeted at a high-value prospect. Education done correctly adds depth to your marketing efforts and positions you as an industry expert.
We all know the people are absorbing more information, faster than ever. Unsurprisingly, as a result of our shortened attention spans, video is the fastest-growing medium and creates the most engagement.
But videos don’t need to be perfect; they just need to be interesting. Short explanations, tips or commentary on a new type of technology could be attractive to your audience. Remember to share your videos across multiple channels – embed it in a blog post, put it on social media and make it a clickable link in your newsletter. Speaking of which…
“But they are so outdated, and people hate to be spammed!” That’s true, but you aren’t producing terrible, predictable content, then it is not spam. To take that definition one step further, spam is useful and interesting to the person who sent it, and valuable content is relevant and engaging to the person who received it. You can’t produce enough of the latter, and sending out the former is damaging to your brand.
Share Something New
If you have a new treatment, a staff member with specific expertise or have extended your working hours to benefit your clients, then tell everyone about it.
Yell and scream from the top of your lungs, using all the tools available to you (as long as it is useful and/or interesting to your clients).
Do a Reactive Offer
Have some times you are having trouble filling? Then how about an offer telling people that these times are free and you want to fill them so they’ll get…
Adding a new treatment and not sure how it will go? Share it with your audience and invite them to try it out at a reduced rate.
Have a new team member? Offer something for booking with them for the first month.
Consider Local Events
Partnering with local schools, café’s, hairdressers and other community hubs is a great way to build engagement cost-effectively. It can be in the form of a quid pro quo – we will promote you if you support us – or low-cost paid promotion.
Use Your Frontage
When was the last time you stood outside your location and considered its effectiveness? Do people notice you as they go past? Is there a reason for them to come in? Is it obvious how they can engage with you – a phone number or website?
Offer a Referral Program
Most referral programs don’t work because they are either too complicated or not communicated effectively enough.
Think about the most simple referral offer you could give to your existing clients, and tell them about it in such a way that they wouldn’t think twice about doing it. This might be in the form of a unique link for people to book through, a discount code for existing clients to pass on, or a simple “tell them to say you referred them, and I’ll give you both a discount.”
Marketing isn’t easy, but it doesn’t have to be ridiculously hard either. Give yourself a goal of at least one new marketing initiative each quarter and watch your business grow.