Salon Tip: Host a Client Appreciation Party
First off, what is a client appreciation party? Well, it’s a fun event that you put on to celebrate your clients! That’s right, your clients are the A-list celebrities at this party! I know what you’re thinking. You have tons on your plate already, and this is just one more thing. But, you need to take the time to show some love to the people who support you, support your team, and ultimately support your salon business. After all, we are nothing without our amazing clientele!
Well, of course, you need to invite all your clients. But to maximize this party and get the most “bang for your buck” you need to take your guest list one step farther. This is how you do it. In your invitation, ask your current clients to bring someone new to the salon. For this to work well, consider offering an incentive to the current client and the potential new client. At my salon’s client appreciation party, we would enter both guests into a drawing to win a product bundle, and the product bundle can be tailored to fit the winners. For instance, if the winner is a male client, you probably wouldn’t give him a basket with mineral makeup and shine spray. Simply advertise a “Product bundle tailored to the winner worth over $50!” or something similar. This small incentive will get everyone fired up and excited to attend!
If you know me well enough, you know that we don’t stop there with the new visitors. Because my salon is a Meet Your Stylist salon, we ask that each new party guest take a couple minutes to fill out the Meet Your Stylist survey. Meet Your Stylist is a personalized survey that matches clients with their top three stylists at your salon based on their personality, lifestyle, and relationship preferences. The survey gets potential clients excited about who they would see if they choose to book an appointment. Even better, by filling out the survey, we’ve now captured their name and email address, so we can continue to market to these potential new guests. Finally, for filling out the survey, they are entered into the product giveaway twice! Who would say no to that?!
When do you actually do this? I suggest that you sponsor a client appreciation party annually, so your clients can expect that you will give back to them every year. You should also be strategic about the time that you’re hosting the party. I recommend a time that isn’t going to sacrifice your best revenue days, but is still convenient for clients. If your busiest time is Thursday evenings, you probably wouldn’t want to choose that day for your party – but maybe Tuesday or Wednesday night instead. We typically host our party from 5pm - 8pm, and mark our stylists off at 4pm. This gives everyone time to finish their clients, grab some food, and get re-glammed for the evening!
The obvious choice is to host your party at your salon, but your options are endless! You could rent a room at a swanky restaurant, or maybe you have a relationship with another local business who has a great space for you. We typically host our party at our salon, but one year we rented two rooms at a restaurant because we wanted to film some video testimonials. You want to host a fun party that people want to attend, but you can also get a return on your investment. Get creative and think about how your party can be a win-win for the clients and your salon.
Now you know when and where you’re hosting your party and who you’re inviting, so what are you going to do? The main event is all about showing some love to your clients. Of course, you want to offer hors d'oeuvre and beverages. Depending on the size of your space and your budget, you could have servers walking around with platters, or you could set up a little food table. To keep an eye on the amount of alcohol guests are consuming, I suggest having someone pouring beverages. After all, you don’t want things to get too crazy!
I also suggest that you offer complimentary services to your party guests. Consider offering a different service at every station, so your guests see the range of services that you offer! For instance, we offer a men’s scalp facial, a mini makeover, curl transformation for those with curly hair, braiding, and curling with a flat iron or curling iron. This is a great opportunity for mini tutorials and to sell products! I can’t say it enough—always be looking for opportunities to benefit the salon.
Finally, you want to offer fabulous networking, so make sure to get the word out about your event! Don’t limit yourself to promoting to the clients who already love you, but get others in the community to come in and see what you’re all about! Put the event on social media, add it to your marketing emails, ask your stylists to invite their friends and family, invite other businesses near your salon, and share with your local chamber. Make sure to think through your strategy and implement it well in advance to ensure a successful party!
As always, you can get as creative as you want for your event. In years past, we’ve done some fabulous giveaways, live entertainment, a DJ, and outside activities. You know your clients better than anyone, so give them a great reason stop in with a friend!
Hopefully, these quick tips on this topic have offered you some great insights and inspiration to host your next client appreciation event! If you have any questions or want to bounce some ideas off of other industry pros, make sure to join our sister company’s private Facebook group! Good luck at your next event!