Christmas is coming and with it plenty of opportunities to increase your retail sales or market your services. If you’re a hairdresser or beautician, you’ll know how busy you get during the festive party season. It’s still not too late to create an SMS campaign for Christmas and the New Year – one of the beauties of SMS marketing is how quick and user-friendly it is – and then apply the same strategy for other seasonal campaigns throughout the year.
Encourage Customers to Opt-In
Let’s imagine you want to run a ‘Beautiful Christmas’ campaign. Start by getting opt-in from your clients in any of the following ways:
A leaflet in your salon offering a discount when you sign up to receive text messages
Include the same information on personalised Christmas cards to loyal customers
Promote your SMS service through word of mouth.
If you already use SMS, send customers a Christmas greeting with a coupon to be used in the New Year. Try and identify periods when bookings are slow to drive custom to periods of downtime. Alternatively, you could offer discounts on products that may not be selling so well in your salon.
We’ve blogged before about how useful SMS is to market your beauty services, and you can read more tips and hints here. Cancellations at Christmas can prove costly, especially when you have other customers on your waiting list.
A gentle reminder is useful for your customers at such a busy time of the year and will help your business to reduce cancellations and fill empty slots in your appointments diary. You can schedule texts to send days, hours and minutes before the appointment and help minimise no-shows.
Make It Useful
The festive season is full on party time for many of your customers, so content full of hints and tips on having a ‘Beautiful Christmas’ will have additional value for your customers.
By scheduling your SMS, you can create excitement and engagement with an advent calendar-style ‘Christmas beauty countdown’ with beauty hints and useful links scheduled at regular intervals. Don’t be afraid of frequency in a campaign like this – you have the opt-in from your customers so they’re already a willing audience. And the more useful your content, the more your audience will look forward to receiving it.
Create a Competition
Who doesn’t love a freebie? For example, as part of your ‘Beautiful Christmas’ campaign, ask customers to text you with their top 3 products and why they’d like to win them for Christmas. Then simply pick a winner.
Don’t forget to cross-promote your competition across multiple social media platforms – it’s another good way to drive opt-in for campaigns during the coming year. Competitions are a great way to increase customer loyalty and satisfaction.
Give Some Good Advice on Christmas Gifts
Schedule personalised SMS that draw on your existing customer insights to provide suggestions for Christmas gifts:
Treat the man in your life to a massage with our 10% discount code
Why not give the gift of beauty to your mum this Christmas with 5% off X products?
BFF loves Strictly? Give her a sparkling spray tan with our 10% discount
Offer redeemable discounts and coupons and make sure you keep the message short and simple with a clear call to action, like ‘tap here to buy’. You’ll boost sales, and increase customer satisfaction and engagement with timely and useful suggestions.
Send a Thank-You Note
Send a follow-up SMS after an appointment, thanking your customers for their loyalty throughout the year. If you’re planning any secret sales for the post-Christmas period, then reward your customers with an invitation.
Personalisation is one of the key tools in any SMS campaign. Integrate our powerful API with your booking software to create bespoke offers and rewards for individual clients. You can read more about why personalisation makes sense for your SMS campaign here.
Drive Sales with SMS
When BMW used an SMS campaign to remind customers to purchase snow chains for their tyres, and personalised it with a picture of their car, there was a 30% uptake resulting in an estimated $45 million in sales.
For a ‘Beautiful Christmas’ campaign, you could promote beauty products tailor-made to meet the challenges for winter skin. Or encourage your customers to book a consultation to ‘winterproof’ their skin, then suggest a suite of products. You may not generate $45 million in additional business, but the more innovative you can be in your campaigns, the more you’ll differentiate yourself from the competition.
Generate Customer Feedback
SMS is perfect for gathering customer feedback that is invaluable for improving the range of products and services that you offer. But it can drive customer engagement in other ways – why not ask clients what colours you should decorate your salon, or what their favourite Christmas song is so you can create a personalised playlist?
Your customers love to feel they’re being heard, so use SMS for polls and to open customer service channels. Polls have a 45% response rate, and 52% of customers prefer to interact with a business by SMS, so you’ll be responsive to the ways your customers want to communicate with you while leveraging SMS for greater customer engagement and satisfaction.
What About the Rest of the Year?
You can run a themed campaign at any time of the year:
A beauty MOT to start the New Year in style
Look beautiful for Valentine’s Day
Fake it for summer with a spray tan
Back to school with a beautiful new you.
The opportunities are endless, and SMS campaigns are a cost-effective solution thanks to their high response rate of over 90%. And unlike a social media campaign, your message won’t get lost in the digital noise and you won’t be limiting your potential market to customers with the latest technology, as even the most basic phone can handle SMS. A tight, well focused and imaginative SMS campaign can give any business a Christmas and New Year boost.