Top 10 Salon Marketing Ideas for the Pros

Salons are everywhere, and if you’re planning to get into the beauty business, it’s important to understand how you can differentiate yourself and attract clients. To help you out, we spoke with industry professionals to get their advice.

Here are 10 salon marketing ideas from the pros to help you develop a solid clientele in no time:

1. Have a selfie station inside your hair salon.

Bernhards Ziverts, Owner and Master Stylist of Matii Salon

Have a selfie station – everybody is all about social media and great hair, so why not have a small area set up in front of your company logo or stylist station and have the clients snap photos and share all over social media. Free advertising/marketing for sure! Also put a sticker in the mirror with your own hashtag if you have it.

2. Create a promotion around unique ‘hair’ holidays.

Larry H. Oskin, President, Marketing Solutions

Mix up your promotions based upon each season or upcoming holiday. Don’t be afraid to create full-priced promotions to bring awareness to exciting services that go well beyond your regular haircut, hairstyle, and nailcare services. Promote services like wedding upstyles, ombre haircolor, all natural hair smoothing, texturizing, sugar hair removal and threading. Besides Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day and Year-End Holidays, promote fun National Hair Extensions Day on May 22, National Blonde’s Day on June 4, Hair Designer’s Day on June 26 and Kiss A Brunette Day on July 2.

3. Sponsor a Local Fashion Show

Jenny Hale, The Military Social Media Guru,

As a salon or spa owner, consider getting involved in your community by sponsoring a local fashion show. Offer your salon to a local runway show in exchange for advertisements in the brochure, access to photographer photos, and networking opportunities. Build a public relations campaign by interviewing with local media as part of the event.

As a former runway model, a group of dedicated makeup and hair artists would work the shows I walked in. They became familiar faces, and I found my go-to stylists quickly. Not only did I build a relationship with them and their brick-and-mortar location, but they received frequent press and credit in media outreach surrounding the events.

5. Offer a daily deal.


If you’re looking for some faster traction when promoting your salon, why not try a daily deal? Daily Deals are when you partner up with another website such as Groupon that can promote your offer for you on a large scale. The discount will need to be higher than other smaller incentives because customers will be paying for the deal on the spot but the investment should be worth it when you start seeing returning customers If you’re not interested in partnering, you can even run a daily deal on your own, through your email list, websiteand social media pages.

6. Promote your salon on Facebook.

Maggie Aland, Fit Small Business

Most of your customers are already on Facebook every day. That built-in audience makes Facebook one of the best ways to reach new customers. You can use Facebook’s marketing parameters to target users in a specific demographic, such as age, gender, or location, and get better results than if your ads are broadcasting to a more general audience. Click here to learn how to create targeted Facebook ads.

7. Announce a Birthday Discount with an Automated Email Campaign

Stephen Sampson, CEO, Salon Target

Having an email campaign is a great way to reduce no-shows and increase client retention. When a customer signs up to receive your email communications, prompt them to enter in basic contact information, including their birthday. Then when their birthday rolls around each year, you can send out a customizable birthday incentive to entice them to return to the salon. This could come in the form of a discount, free product, or service or even a small gift like a pair of flip-flops to go along with a discounted pedicure. By offering birthday incentives, you’re letting the client know you value their business and are thinking of them on their special day.

8. Offer free haircuts at public events.

David Ingram, Chron

Set up a temporary kiosk in the mall or at a community event and offer free haircuts to the public. Focus on making a good impression on anyone who takes advantage of the offer, and use your most talented stylists for the promotion. Give flyers or coupons to participants and passers-by. Doing exhibitions can stimulate word of mouth advertising, as participants will likely show off their new haircut, tell the story of receiving it for free at the exhibition and share your company’s information with others.

9. Reward customers for referrals.

Mary Lister, WordStream

Once I find a hairdresser or manicurist that I love, I’m apt to recommend her/him to all my friends. Why not give your customers a little bonus for doing your advertising for free and sending new clients your way? I recommend an email or postcard with a nice note, “Thanks for referring us to your friend, Jane! We’re so pleased you thought of us, that we want you to know we’re thinking of you, too. Here is $15 off your next visit.”

10. Select Your Own “Influencers” & Offer Special Incentives for their Referrals

Brandon Stephens, Owner, Bigger Better Hair Salon

As a salon, we utilize our network of clients to help with the personal aspect of our marketing. We carefully select our own “influencers,” who might have jobs that connect them with a lot of people in the community, or they are our perfect billboard head of hair that we would want to represent our work.

We send our “influencers” a complimentary gift of haircare products, accompanied with business cards for the stylist we are marketing. Each business card also has the influencer’s name on it so we can note his/her account for each one redeemed. We usually offer an incentive to the influencer for each card that is redeemed, like a complimentary blowout with the stylist we are marketing or $25 off their next service.This method not only makes an existing client feel special, but it gives them an incentive to talk about their hair and our salon.