Done well, client events can achieve so much, so why do I often get a bit of a lacklustre response from salon owners when I mention hosting a salon event?
Let’s start with the basics and understand why you are hosting a promotional evening in the first place.
Two key questions you need to ask before planning an event are:
- How is this event going to contribute to the outcome you want for your company?
- How can you ensure that it delivers the results that you need for your business?
Think about the results you want
Understanding the must-have results will help you quantify the value you expect from the event. Understanding the specific purpose of each particular consumer event is key to holding a successful one in the first place.
For example, are you hosting an event to get media coverage, raise consumer awareness of your salon, or to build more lucrative links with other local business?
The fact is that it is often all of the above. But, realistically, can one single event really achieve all that? Would it not be better to actually plan three separate events aimed at each one of the above desired outcomes?
My advice is, don’t try to host one event for lots of different audiences. When it comes to consumer events, one size does not fit all.
Who is your target audience?
Narrowing your purpose and your target audience will help you craft a consistent message to market and host a successful event, right down to the smallest detail. The hard part is making sure you have consistency in the practical elements of hosting an event so it ‘hits’ your desired outcome. That means making sure the right people are invited, the drinks and food are appropriate, the displays correspond appropriately and the information is themed. There is a lot to consider. After all the preparation, you then need to convert it into a worthwhile, memorable experience.
Give your audience a reason to go
I believe the most important thing is adding value for your guests. Whether it’s for more information about your salon, the option to try out taster services or just good old fun, make sure you make it clear what they’ll get out of attending.
It’s the morning after! In order to continuing building momentum, you need to follow up with your guests. The reality is that the party was only one part of the larger picture towards increased salon profile.
Send out thank you cards to all who attended; preferably hand-signed and posted.
Post all the pictures on Facebook and Twitter. Don’t just do it as a one-off, keep posting throughout the whole of the following week. Most people love to see themselves being pictured at events and it makes them feel involved with your business. All of this helps to create the salon ‘fanbase’, rather than just a client base.