The celebration of St. Valentine’s Day, on February 14, is an ancient tradition but, with a few, carefully chosen salon valentine's day specials, salon owners and managers can provide a new take on the ‘season of love’ and boost their profits into the bargain.
According to the Daily Mirror, the average person spends around US$60 (£45, 50€) in an effort to express their affection for a loved one on St. Valentine’s Day. The key to this potentially lucrative market of ‘loved up’ clients is to create a range of incentives, offers and promotions that add value to your products and services.
Of course, the purpose of salon valentine specials is to increase, not decrease, revenue, so ‘adding value’ does not automatically offering discounted prices. You may need to be a little more creative, and subtle, in your approach, but there are many ways to encourage clients through your door – and to spend a little extra once they are on your premises – that cost little or nothing at all.
The ambiance of a salon or, in other words, its character and atmosphere, influences the mood of your clients and, hence, how long they want to stay and how much money they want to spend.
Obviously, salon promotional ideas for Valentines Day should aim to achieve a romantic mood, which is nonetheless comfortable and welcoming. The colours traditionally associated with St. Valentine’s Day are red, pink and white, while symbols of hearts, roses and Cupid, the Roman god of love in all its varieties, feature heavily in decorations for the celebration.
Consistency is the key to creating the correct ambiance and, if you are in any doubt, err on the side of glamour and sophistication, rather than anything overtly ‘cheesy’.
Likewise, if you play music to your clients, opt for an upbeat, carefree playlist, rather than a collection of maudlin ‘breakup’ songs, which may induce negative emotions and take the shine off your carefully-crafted salon Valentine's Day specials. Remember, your clients’ psychological comfort is as important as their physical comfort.
Creating a small, but stylish, range of Valentine-themed gift vouchers, or gift cards, suitable for men and women, is an excellent way of solving clients’ gift dilemmas and introducing new clients to your business.
Upfront payment generates immediate cashflow and, because you already have the cash in hand, it really does not matter if clients redeem their proof of purchase within weeks, months or, indeed, never.
One study revealed that the majority of clients spend over and above the value of their gift voucher, or gift card of certificate, by one-fifth, so you are in a ‘win-win’ situation. Although you may not be looking to spend extra money, it is worth remembering that a gift card, professionally prepared on high quality, glossy cardboard, will be more readily given, and received, as a Valentine’s Day gift than a limp, cheaply-made gift voucher.
Many men, while not afraid of being romantic, still struggle to find a Valentine’s Day gift that their loved one genuinely desires.
Consequently, a selection of your best-selling, most indulgent products bundled together in gift pack, wrapped and ready to go, is likely to go down well with clients of both sexes.
It may also be worth including some smaller, less expensive gift packs to cater for clients who want to make an impulsive, last-minute purchase, but do not have much money to spend. Of course, ladies, too, may be at a loss with regard to what to buy as Valentine’s Day gift, so a small selection of gift packs for men is not altogether a bad idea.
As the ‘jewel in the crown’ of Valentine specials, draw up a list of popular beauty treatments that, collectively, provide an all-inclusive makeover package that clients, or their loved ones, simply cannot do without.
Such a package could include eyebrow shaping, facial, make-up, manicure, massage, pedicure, spray tan, wash and blow dry and other treatments, but it may be wise to allow clients to pick and choose a certain number of treatments from the list for a fixed price.
This not only adds a degree of flexibility to your Valentine's Day hair salon specials, but also creates a number of price points for clients without the time, inclination or money for a complete makeover package.
Although a makeover package is highly appropriate to the Valentine’s Day theme, there is no real reason why such a promotion should not be equally attractive to single clients of either sex.
Love is in the air, so make sure that your hair salon Valentine's Day specials consistently reflect the romantic theme.
Even your ‘standard’ services, for which demand may only be moderate, day-to-day, can be revitalised by incorporating ingredients such as chocolate, strawberry or rose petals. Many couples enjoy Valentine’s Day together, so tailor packages that can be bought by, and for, men, women or both.
A simple example might be a romantic ‘his and hers’ aromatherapy massage, with a glass of sparkling wine, or champagne, thrown in, but more adventurous couples might like to try a healing mud bath, an exfoliating sugar crystal body scrub or an invigorating body brushing session.
If you already offer ‘exotic’ treatments of this type, all well and good, but be wary of experimenting with new offerings, particularly those that involve significant expenditure on your part, unless you are certain that sufficient demand for them exists.
Everyone, regardless of their age, sex or relationship status, enjoys something for nothing, so why not delight your clients – new and existing – with a gift basket, or goody bag, as part of their Valentine’s Day experience with you.
Fill your gift baskets with appropriately themed product samples, such as red and pink lipsticks, nail varnishes and so on, so that you can give them away, gratis, without losing money. Of course, for your salon leading lights, it may be worth investing in small boxes of chocolates or bottles of sparkling wine, bearing the name of your salon, to say ‘thank you’ for their continued custom.
Otherwise, they may feel aggrieved at receiving a gift that, while completely free, is only the same as that you offer to brand-new clients.
The number of male clients turning to the beauty industry for all aspects of male grooming has been on the increase in recent years, so it makes sense to cater for this burgeoning market sector in your hair salon Valentine's Day specials.
Create a straightforward, jargon-free menu of men-only treatments, such as back and/or shoulder waxing, eyebrow waxing and tweezing, manicure, pedicure and so on, and place a selection of pre-packaged, trial size grooming products in plain view to encourage unplanned, impulse buying.
You could, of course, organise a men-only event, in which you offer male grooming products and services, including hair-colouring treatment, lowlighting, highlighting and anything else you wish to promote.
In a beauty salon scenario, men typically enjoy an element of ‘safety in numbers’, so if offered a trial product to take away and try at home they are often more likely to do so during a men-only event than if they visit your salon, alone, on a different occasion.
Obviously, in a beauty salon, you will be hosting what is, effectively, a ladies’ night out, but organise it in the style of a ladies’ night in.
Encourage your female clientele, including the single ladies, to dress comfortably, invite their friends and enjoy an informal, relaxing experience, as they would at home.
A ‘spa’ night is a popular option for a ladies’ night in, so promote your salon as a venue where ladies can enjoy beauty treatments deliver professionally, with a few naughty treats, such as sparkling wine and nibbles, thrown in.
Try to make the event as indulgent as possible, from a hair and beauty point of view but, without being too matronly about it, keep a close eye on alcohol consumption, so that what is supposed to be a genteel occasion does not descend into raucous, drunken free-for-all. You want your salon to be remembered for the right reasons, after all.
On February 14 itself, as part of your Valentine's Day hair salon specials you could offer complimentary upgrades to your ‘standard’ treatments by way of adding value and creating demand.
Additions such as warm foot bath, adorned with, say, red rose petals, a relaxing hand and arm massage or a mini facial are all likely to go down well and need not cost you much extra in terms of money and resources. In fact, you will probably be more than amply compensated for the generosity of your salon Valentine specials by the extra revenue you generate from repeat business as a result.
First impressions count, so take every opportunity to impress new clients attracted by your salon Valentine specials, or in receipt of a gift voucher or card.
Give them the ‘celebrity’ treatment, perhaps offering a complimentary glass of champagne or similar treat, to make their Valentine’s Day experience as memorable as possible, so that they are more likely to return and/or speak kindly of your business to family and friends.
In the process, ask each new client to complete a client card, including their email address, so that you can contact them with details of future promotions.
While you are busy creating attractive salon promotional ideas for Valentines Day that will capture the imagination of new clients, or their loved ones, do not neglect your existing clients.
If you operate a loyalty card programme, Valentine’s Day is an ideal time to surprise existing clients who have accumulated a certain number of loyalty points with a free product or service to reward their faithfulness.
The ‘trick’, though, is to introduce such clients to a new product or service which, if they enjoy, they can buy in the future and continue to have a positive impact on your profitability.
Celebrating romantic love on St. Valentine’s Day is a lovely gesture, but it is, after all just one day. Not all women, men or couples believe in dedicating just one day of the year to someone special, so may not celebrate St. Valentine’s Day with the same gusto as those that do.
Of course, that does not mean, in any way, that they are averse to the idea of hair and beauty treatments but, by extending your salon Valentine's Day specials on either side of February 14, you can cater for clients who wish to avoid a big hoo-ha on the day itself.
And if you love these ideas or have some other ideas that you've used in the past to promote your salon business, why not share it with the Belliata community in the comment section below. We would also be delighted to answer your questions, as well.
A Holiday Loved and Loathed: a Consumer Perspective of Valentine's Day: by Angeline Close, University of Georgia. http://www.acrwebsite.org/volumes/12416/volumes/v33/NA-33
The Effect of Relationship Characteristics on Buying Fresh Flowers as Romantic Valentine’s Day Gifts: by Yen-Chun Lai and Li-Chun Huang https://journals.ashs.org/horttech/view/journals/horttech/23/1/article-p28.xml