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|Professionally: Brand Strategy, Brand Communications, Social Media, Public Relations
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Social Media for Your Spa
Social media is so much more than Facebook and Twitter; it can increase your exposure and sales, and it would be unwise to not tap into its huge potential. At the moment, in 2011, these two aforementioned, along with YourTube, are the biggest players, and you should capitalize on their popularity for your business’ success.
Twitter. Twitter allows only very short messages and is a place people commonly visit to look for specials and discounts. Using Twitter for announcing specials and available appointments allows you to cover last-minute cancellations, as well as introduce new spa professionals who may not have a strong following yet. Remember that the type of consumers who prowl Twitter for these types of offers may not become your most loyal clients, but they do serve a purpose: to supplement otherwise-lost income. And if they like your spa, your therapists and your services, they are likely to become repeat customers. On your Twitter profile, there is a little space that tells people about you. Remember to either post a link to your website or to your Facebook fan page here.
Facebook. If your spa doesn’t have its own website, create a fan page and use it as your online face to the world. If it does have a website, use your Facebook page to complement it and to attract new customers that otherwise would not find you. Don’t be concerned with whether or not you should try and direct people to your website. It doesn’t matter where customers access you, as long as it leads to a sale. If you feel that clients are more likely to book an appointment or purchase a product if they are on your website, then by all means try and direct them to it, but do so in a nonpushy way.
Facebook allows for a much more visual, vast and interactive environment than Twitter. Make sure your Facebook fan page gives plenty of information about your facility, as well as your services, staff, hours and rates. Include photos of your spa, treatments and products. Make use of all the fan page tabs available to post special offers and special events. Use the wall to give value to the followers—announce specials, events, new hires and new launches, profile your staff members, and create treatments and products of the month.
YouTube is a more advanced tool, because it uses only video for its content. Moving images can be so powerful—why not use them to your advantage? YouTube is best used as a social media tool to enhance Facebook and Twitter, and to add a more exciting, visual component.
Most digital cameras these days have a video function, and some smartphones have powerful video capabilities, as well. You could always purchase a flip camera for the purpose of taking your videos; they are cheap and easy to use. They key is to give consumers something interesting to view with an educational value-added. It could be a short clip featuring one of your new treatments, a virtual tour of your facilities, or a makeup or product application. Especially these days, people have short attention spans—a typical television news story is rarely longer than a 90 seconds—so keep your clips no longer than three minutes. No one needs to see a full facial being done, just show the highlights and highlight what makes it different. Your most complex video should never be longer than five minutes and even then it should have a good reason to be that long. A typical video should be shorter than one minute. Remember to post your videos to your Facebook fan page and Twitter feed.
If you currently do not offer online booking, consider using a Web specialist to create an online schedule. This will truly make your social media efforts worthwhile, because it will likely lead to immediate bookings as opposed to directing people to call your facility.
Social media should be an important part of your marketing plan, and can enhance your online presence tremendously, thus leading to increased traffic and sales.
Don’t forget to list your business on online directories such as Google Maps, Yelp!, Yahoo! Local, Best of the Web andLiveSearch. These are important tools in allowing potential new clients to find your business, as well as encouraging recommendations for your services.
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