What’s your Salon’s USP?

What’s your Salon’s USP?

I’ve written a lot, taught a lot, coached a lot on the subject of USP or Unique Selling Proposition. While most of our Worldwide Salon Marketing Members ‘get’ the reasoning behind all the Emotional Direct Response salon marketing ads, flyers, letters and other material in the Simple Salon Marketing manual, very few owners of salons & spas even attempt to understand the importance of having a truly unique message for their prospects and customers, and it’s effect on your salon’s income.

In 1961, famous American advertising executive Rosser Reeves introduced the idea of USP in his book Reality in Advertising.

According to Reeves, there are three requirements for a USP:

1. Each advertisement must make a proposition to the consumer. Each must say, “Buy this product, and you will get this specific benefit.” (Your headline must contain a benefit – a promise to the reader.)

2. The proposition must be one that the competition either cannot, or does not, offer. Here’s where the “unique” in Unique Selling Proposition comes in. It is not enough merely to offer a benefit. You must also differentiate your product.

3. The proposition must be so strong that it can move the masses, i.e., pull over new customers to your product or service. The differentiation cannot be trivial. It must be a difference that is very important to the reader. (What Reeves was talking about here was making a BIG promise. But not necessarily an expensive one.)

By contrast, so much beauty industry marketing, particularly among average ‘corner store’ hair and beauty salons, is so timid that it disappears, becomes invisible. “Come to us and we’ll make you look much better…” Vague, wishy-washy nonsense.) Now, big companies spend millions, billions of dollars building a strong brand.

There are lots of soft drink manufacturers, many of whom sell a ‘cola’ product. But you can only buy Coke from Coca Cola. Unfortunately, YOU don’t have the kind of money Coca Cola has to build a ‘brand’. So we use ‘guerilla marketing’ methods to achieve differentiation in a USP. One of the best methods I know to create a strong USP is when your product or service has a unique feature, one that competitors can’t boast about. Of course, if you have that advantage, it all becomes pretty easy. Okay, I hear you thinking,

“But what if I’m just an average salon doing pretty much the same kind of stuff as the competition?”

According to Reeves – and I agree – uniqueness can either come from a strong brand (an option 95% of salons can’t use) or from a claim not otherwise made in that particular form of advertising.
And that’s what you should be doing in your salon.

In other words, saying something about your business or service that others could be saying, but aren’t!

It’s called Making the Invisible Visible.

Here’s an example of that process in action:

For years, Schlitz brewing company dominated the market by ‘telling the story’ of how they made their beer. No different from the way everybody else made their beer, but they ‘made the invisible visible’.

Decades ago (there’s nothing much NEW in this concept) Milwaukee’s famous Schlitz brewing company went from nowhere to market leader when they started ‘telling the story’ of how they made their beer, in painstaking detail. Ironically, they made their beer exactly the same way every other brewer made beer, but crucially, nobody else was telling the story.

There’s another VERY large advantage to taking this approach. I call it ‘claiming the high ground’. Once you’ve done it, your competition is left to look like followers instead of leaders if they copy you. Famously, Reeves crafted a USP for M&Ms – ‘It melts in your mouth, not in your hand’ – that had the opposition chasing them for decades, and is still in use today. What could the competition do, run an ad that said “we also melt in your mouth, not in your hand”? I don’t think so.

If you’re a reasonably intelligent salon owner (in other words, one of the few who understand that the money’s in the marketing, not in the product or service) then you might have picked up on a couple of crucial lessons in this post.

Creating a USP is not necessarily about how good your product or customer service is. Everybody claims they provide ‘great customer service’. Big deal. As you can see from the examples I’ve quoted here (Schlitz and M&Ms) they didn’t talk about how good their product was. Instead, they talked about stuff that was actually peripheral to what was in the bottle (or the box). So, think: what can you say about your business that is unique (or perceived to be unique), that either cannot be said or isn’t being said about a rival salon? And remember, it’s not about you, the business, or the product – a truly ‘sticky’ USP is always about the customer, and the benefit to that customer.

Here’s ONE way for a salon to create a truly Unique Selling Proposition:

First, write a LIST of things that aggravate and annoy (your potential) customers. For example,

  • Being kept waiting
  • Getting shoved from one therapist/stylist to another
  • Dirty, unhygienic floors, rooms etc
  • Inexperienced staff
  • No parking nearby

(You can and should be able to make a LONG list of things that pee people off about salons.)

Second, pick at least ONE of these, and provide a GREAT answer to it.

Example: one of our Member salons decided that what annoyed her mostly middle-aged clients was going to a salon and being served by therapists or stylists barely out of their teens. So she came up with a cracker of a USP: “You know what it’s like when you visit a salon and you’re thrown in with an inexperienced junior? Well, at (salon name) the average age of our staff is thirty eight, with an average experience of 15 years! So you can rest assured your skin is being looked after by people who know what they’re doing!”

No meaningless blather about ‘Our customer service is exceptional’ or ‘We’ve won the industry’s top awards’. Just stuff that matters to the customer.

Is your website doing its job - being FOUND high on Google searches, generating phone calls, bookings and leads?

If not, it could have CRITICAL ERRORS you don’t know about. Use our FREE website audit report and health check tool and find out. (A $245 value!) 

Four tips to create great salon offers

Four tips to create great salon offers

Most business owners know that Christmas is a no-brainer. Bookings are full, and everybody’s scrambling to fit as many clients in as possible before the break.

But the really smart owners have their eyes on the New Year. Finding clients before Christmas is easy. After? Not so much.

It takes some clever “Sales Thinking”.

And the very first “Sales Thinking 101” is your offer.

Marketing without an offer is like putting up a logo and imagining it’s somehow going to attract a stampede of customers all on its own.

How to Create an Irresistible Offer.

Pretty pictures alone doesn’t cut it. Most small business owners know how to throw up a picture on social media, or send an email to their clients and prospects. But few know the ‘secret sauce’ of creating an offer that compels people to respond. That’s irresistible.

So here are the “Big Four” elements that make up a great offer: Run these by your current marketing and see if it ticks all these boxes.

1. It has to be clear.

Confused people don’t buy. Discounts and value-add-ons can work, but don’t make the prospect think. Half off works better than 50% off, and 50% off works better than 35% off or 60% off, because people have trouble working out percentages.

Two for one, or buy one, get one free will almost always work better than half off.

For years, Members of our Client Attraction System have used our famous “Buy One, Get One Free” templates to great effect around Christmas time to drive clients and prospects into the salon after the holiday.

2. The offer has to be good value.

Don’t be shy about publishing prices. If you’re offering a discount or a premium, make sure people can compare it with published prices. People have been lied to for decades, by everyone from the church down. So they’re suspicious. Make the extra value crystal clear.

3. Put a limit on the offer.

There’s no point creating a great offer and then, by default, making it open-ended. Scarcity drives response.

You can either limit the offer by time, or by numbers. But I’ve found limiting by numbers has almost always worked better than limiting by time.

So “only for the first 17 to respond” tends to work better than “Offer ends January 31.” And thanks to technology, if your offer is on your website, you can automatically show how many of the special offer or deal are left.

4. Make it believable.

There should always be a reason for you making this offer. Again, people are suspicious. We’ve all been taught there’s no such thing as a free lunch.

So you need to explain. You’re doing this to introduce a new team member. Or to celebrate a birthday. Or the opening of a new shop, an anniversary, a celebration of some kind.

Almost any explanation will do. But there has to be one.

Now, take a look over your most recent marketing material. Does it offer great value? Is it scarce? Is it believable?

Strategies and tips like this are just the – pardon the pun – tip of the iceberg.

Which is why so many salon & spa owners are Members of our Client Attraction System.

It’s a complete “how-to” online course in marketing for smart salon owners, plus a huge range of downloadable tools, templates, and done-for-you social media marketing.


Use your time during the lockdown! 

Find out how to use simple, short videos – just like Carolyn does – to drive clients into your busines, and dominate your local market. 

Book a FREE 30 minute coaching session with me, and I’ll show you, live on screen, how Carolyn does it, and you can too!

Greg Milner
CEO & Founder, Worldwide Salon Marketing
Author, “Rich Salon Owner” and “Simple Salon Marketing”

– G’day, it’s Greg at Worldwide Salon Marketing.

If your business has been closed by the pandemic, then here’s a way you can use that down time to get ready for when   lockdowns are lifted. Today I wanna introduce you to a salon owner who owned an ordinary salon in a suburb of one of our major cities, and using a very, very easy tool that everybody carries in their pocket 24 hours a day, she turned her business into the biggest and most successful in her field within a year.

She did it using this thing, very simple, just an ordinary mobile phone. And within a very short time, Carolyn Evans had brought in clients from all over the world to her suburban business.  

Here’s how she did it.


[VIDEO] How this salon sold $16,000 in retail products – in TWO DAYS…..

The pandemic lockdown has paralyzed thousands of salon business owners. Like deer in the headlights, many are frozen into inaction.

But for some, the threat to business survival has galvanized them into ACTION stations.

Like Lisa van Dyk of Gloss Beauty in New Zealand. Lisa is a long time Member of our Client Attraction System and digital marketing services.

With two days’ notice of New Zealand’s impending lockdown – one of the most severe ‘flatten the curve’ countries in the world – Lisa and her team pulled the trigger on a short but incredibly intense drive to sell as much retail product as they could in just 48 hours.

Want results like that for your business? 

Lisa and more than 5,000 other salon owners around the world have used Worldwide Salon Marketing’s done-for-you promotions and and digital marketing services to boost their businesses.

Now, to help salon owners affected by coronavirus, we’ve released our core program, the Client Attraction System, at a one-time-only price.

You can treat the lockdown one of two ways –

“Woe is me!” Or a chance to get some stuff done.  If you are “Woe is me” please leave this site.
If you are wanting to take huge action and make money,  the Client Attraction System is the place to start.  

The Client Attraction System contains a complete, 10-module online video streaming course, plus hundreds of downloadable, tested and proven promotions and graphics you can edit to suit your own business.

PLUS, we’re preparing a whole new suite of “The Coronavirus is Over” promotions to help you get your clients back into the salon, fast!

Got questions? Need help?

Book a private, one-on-one Zoom video Strategy Session with me – just choose your preferred day and time in my calendar.

(It’s free!)

I look forward to seeing you on the call… 

Founder & CEO, Worldwide Salon Marketing
Author of Rich Salon Owner and Simple Salon Marketing

Speaker 1 (00:00):

Hi, Greg Milner here, the salon marketing guy, the guy who makes salon phones ring even in these tough times, it is possible to make heaps of money. Imagine this selling retail, like it’s going out of style. Here’s exactly how Lisa van Dyke of Gloss Beauty in New Zealand did it, $16,000 in just two days. Would that help your cashflow? Here she is

Speaker 2 (00:22):

So we were having a financial year product retail sale which wasn’t supposed to have been actually launched, um, until after we were actually put into lockdown, but we brought it forward. Um, so we literally only had two days of trading as such, and it was you buy two products, you get a third product for $25, and we sold over $16,000 worth of product in those two days that were literally just retail days and purely for finding clients. Um, ones that were also coming in and only maybe buying one or two products, we told them, you know, if they get an extra one, they’re only paying $25 for it anyway. So yeah, and I would three, four plus products and he had just pint stocking up because they knew they weren’t going to be able to access for however long.

Speaker 1 (01:12):

So how did you reach out to clients?

Speaker 2 (01:15):

Hold them. Yep. Um, I think we had one email that went out and we maybe had one post that made it live on social media. Um, but it was purely through, we probably rang, I don’t know, a hundred plus clients. Um, yeah, just saying that’s what it was.

Speaker 1 (01:38):

And you did $16,000 in sales in two days from a hundred or so clients.

Speaker 2 (01:43):

So I think like if we possibly hadn’t had that before lockdown, we would be in a lot worse position. So just a little bit.

Speaker 1 (01:52):

So you can treat the lockdown in one of two ways. You can say, woe is me and sit on your hands and do nothing. Or you can take some massive action and make some money. If that’s what you want to do, then click on the link to the client attraction system below the video. And, uh, that gives you all the tools you need to actually turn this into a success. If you’re woe is me, then you’ve probably got no place watching this video. See you soon.


Case Study: Tattoo Removal Facebook & Google Ad Campaign

Case Study: Tattoo Removal Facebook & Google Ad Campaign

Advertising on Google and Facebook isn’t about luck. It’s about having the right structure in place to capture sales or leads, and being able to measure the results – instantly. 

It doesn’t really matter what kind of business you have, the structure of the campaign is always the same. 

In this video, we’ve set up a campaign for a laser tattoo removal clinic. It happens to be in Sydney, but it could be anywhere. At the time this was recorded, the campaign had been running only four days – but it’s producing good, consistent results already. 

Click the button below the video if you’d like to know more about advertising on Facebook and Google. 

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