It’s common for businesses to be quiet in the initial period after opening, but leaving things to chance and assuming that business will pick up is a risky game. Instead, you should be doing everything you can to get booked up in those first few weeks so you can spread the word as much as possible.
A bit of determination and the willingness to shout about your nail salon business will go a long way to help filling up your books. And when people walk by and see your business is thriving, they are more inclined to want to try to get a booking due to the fear of missing out (FOMO). Here are some expert level tips to help get your nail salon fully booked within the first week of opening.
When prospective customers can book online, you remove all of the potential barriers that might get in their way. They will see the prices, the services and the times you are available. You can also get them booked in with a clear cancellation policy, so there will be no confusion for no-shows or late arrivals. Taking a percentage of the total fee as a deposit will help to deter no-shows.
You can reduce your running costs and maximise your profits by operating limited opening hours in the beginning. When a customer tries to book, they won’t see blocks of time where you are closed, they will simply see blocks of time where you are unavailable, which will lead them to believe you are booked up. This increases the sense of scarcity, which drives them to book quickly rather than risking missing out.
As demand increases, you can start to expand your opening hours. This approach will help you to avoid having staff sitting around doing nothing during the day. It will also give you plenty of time to keep on top of admin and marketing.
If you want to be fully booked so you can show customers what you can do, consider offering a discount for first-time bookings. While this will reduce the total profit from the first few weeks of opening, it will help you to achieve your goal of being fully booked. Discounts for a limited time can help to drive demand for your services and also allow you to build momentum.
If you are offering discounted services, you have a better chance of getting individuals to review your business online. They will recognise the struggle to establish a new business and will want to be part of the effort to help establish your name. It makes customers feel important if you ask them directly if they can share their experience online through a review or social media post.
Once you have online booking set up, you should also think about an automated CRM (customer relationship manager). Use your CRM to make notes about your customers so you can speed up the process if they book again.
Offering a more personalised service will help you to stand out from the competition. Think about it: you’re new on the scene, but you already know how each customer likes their nails. This is an excellent way to differentiate your services and encourage repeat bookings and positive reviews.
You can also automate your marketing processes. For example, you could email or text your customers to remind them to book a follow-up appointment a few weeks after their initial booking. You can also use this process to request reviews or send aftercare tips to help customers keep their nails looking beautiful.
Many people learn about new business openings in their area through social media. Don’t miss out on this lucrative source of leads just because you think you’re too busy. You’ll have plenty of content opportunities as you’ll be offering nail services back-to-back. Create short Instagram reels of trending nail styles and your favourite transformations of the week.
At the end of each appointment, ask if you can quickly snap a video. Video is more versatile, as you will be able to isolate stills, but you can also cut them together with music to make reels. You could also go live and give individuals a tour of your facilities once you have a few engaged followers.
You need a finger on the pulse of the latest trends if you want to be booked up within a few weeks. Monitor social media and speak to your customers. Find out what services they are looking for and what you can offer more of in order to maximise on the latest trends.
While you are offering new services, make sure you don’t neglect the basics. The vast majority of customers will be visiting because they want a high quality and long-lasting manicure or pedicure.
Visitors will be drawn to bold interior design choices they can see from the street. Think about your interior design choices and how you can make it more “Instagrammable”. Many nail salons will choose a strong focal point such as a flower wall, statement artwork or a neon sign to help them to stand out.
Think about how your interiors will help to facilitate online sharing and then lean into an aesthetic that works for your brand.
With a bit of planning, you can quickly achieve a fully booked salon that is the talk of the town. Once you have filled your books with discount bookings, you can then keep the momentum going with a strong marketing campaign that focuses on reviews, customer service and repeat bookings.
The goal of the first few months should be to grow your customer list as much as possible so that you have a strong foundation for your marketing activities in the coming months and years.