Did you know the men's grooming industry is expected to reach a whopping $26 billion by the year 2020? According to a recent survey, 44% of American men who frequent grooming services went to a barber within the last year. Even better news? Barber services are one of the top trends that men say they’re looking to try next.*
With numbers like that, your barbershop is a great position to increase your client base and your bottom line. You know your barber shop has what it takes to succeed as a local business in today’s competitive market: you have experienced barbers, affordable prices, and excellent work. Customers are pleased, and your staff is friendly and greets everyone by name. You know you’re great, and your customers know your worth, so how do you get more of them?
It's such a simple question, yet it’s a job that can overwhelm you if you don't break it down into smaller, manageable tasks. Keep reading!
1. Create a buzz in your community.
Since you’re a local business, you want to do your research on local publications for advertising purposes, as well as other local businesses you may want to partner with to spread the word about your services. You can leave some business cards and flyers in their shop, and, likewise, you can do the same for them.
2. Promote with razor-sharp incentives.
The best way to get new customers is to offer them a deal they can’t refuse! Offer half-priced haircuts, or an additional complimentary service along with a haircut at regular price—whatever works best for you. Once you’ve come up with your specific promotion, then it’s time to place it where potential customers will see! This is where #1 comes into play; contact a local publication to place an ad or coupon. Even better, promote your special through sites like Groupon, so tons of potential customers will come across it!
3. Create relationships that are a cut above the rest.
A barber shop often feels like a second home to your customers; they take a break from their regular routine and chat with you about whatever is going on in their lives. Make sure that your shop evokes this feeling: Greet customers at the door, offer them a glass of water or coffee, and just be friendly. Think about it this way; the more you give, the more you’ll get back. Offer customers a free haircut or other service with a referral. This way, you’re bound to get your current customers spreading the word!
4. Be smooth online.
If you don’t already have a website, get to it pronto! Sites like Weebly and Wordpress make it fairly simple to create a basic website. If you’ve already got a decent website, work on improving it: Update it regularly with photos of your work, staff and space, and keep your information current. If your shop is not already listed in an online directory, this is a must-do, because if would-be customers are searching for a local barber shop, and yours is not listed, you will be missing out big time!
And remember what I said about harnessing the power of relationships? Well, if your shop is not already on social media, get started with Facebook and Twitter pages, and then work your way up to Instagram. Gain followers and engage them with regular content, whether it’s a photo, contest, funny meme, or just an important update about hours or closing times. If someone asks a question, be sure to respond promptly, and display the same kind of friendly attitude you would if he were sitting in your chair!
With these 4 tips, you’ll start gaining new business, and your new customers won't believe what they were missing out on all this time!
*November 2018, MINDBODY Wellness Index Survey (October 26-November 12, 2018).
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