Updated: Dec 17, 2020
We love talking about the benefits of client loyalty and engagement. Members that feel valued and appreciated by your salon company are going to stay loyal to you longer, period.
The great thing about customer appreciation is that it is often very easy and inexpensive.
It mostly requires thoughtfulness. It takes many forms. It’s giving away expensive items, but it’s also having a staff that remembers first names and frequent purchases.
The bottom line is there are many ways a brand can make customers feel like it cares about them.
Here are 25 simple and inexpensive ways any brand can express appreciation for its customers:
1. Handwritten letters - No list of customer appreciation suggestions would be complete without a call for handwritten letters.
And for good reason - they work. They stand out in today’s digital age and make people feel human and special. Yes, they take some time, but consider doing one a day. It doesn’t need to be a novel - just a few lines saying thanks. If you can’t take the time to write them out, at the very least send a digital thank you via text or email on a regular basis to clients.
2. Follow back - When a customer follows you on Instagram, follow them back. It costs you nothing and shows a customer you’re interested in what they have to say.
3. Like and Comment – Following back is one thing, but if you take some time to scroll through your feed once per day and like some of your guests’ posts and comment on them, you make that client feel like much more than a number to you.
4. Coupons - Besides being great drivers of new and targeted business, coupons are probably the most basic, common way of showing customers some love. Bonus points for coupons based on their purchasing history.
5. Train staff to learn (and use) first names - A person’s first name is the most important sound in the world. I remember walking into a hotel one day to check in and they addressed me by my first name. I had no idea how they knew my name, but it was impressive,
make me feel valued, and I have not forgotten it to this day, 10 years later. It’s safe to say that I return to that hotel every time I am in that city. Use this technique to make the relationships with your customers more personal.
6. Surprise and delight - pick a customer, any customer, and delight them by giving them something just for being a customer.
7. Pre-sale notifications (not just marketing blasts) - Keep a list of your best customers’ contact information (maybe it’s your loyalty members). Then notify those customers of new products and sales ahead of time. You can create a VIP Facebook Group for these special clients if you want. The key is to give them special access to key information before the masses.
8. Pre- or after-hours private events - Open your business to your best customers, and them alone. Provide food and drinks and entertainment, or simply give them first crack at purchasing your new product or trying a new service (This works really well in
conjunction with the pre-sale notification private invitation).
9. Giveaways - Whether it’s placing business cards in a bowl or an Instagram contest, contests and giveaways are a proven method of exciting people to action.
10. Ask for feedback – having clients fill out a customer appreciation survey from time to time is a true win-win proposition. It gives you valuable feedback that you can use to improve your business and it also makes the customer feel like their voice and opinion.
11. Remind customers of how you’re utilizing their feedback - The perception is most brands ignore customer feedback, so they’ll love it when you notify them of the specific changes you’ve made in response to their comments.
12. Create a charitable giving program - People love doing business with businesses that do good. Donate a portion of your proceeds to a good cause. Partner with local charities, or have a fund set aside for giving small amounts when approached by a customer.
13. Invest in good customer service - People enter a customer service experience expecting to be disappointed. Studies show that people actually desire a brand that helps them resolve issues without actually having to deal with customer service. Being a company that makes things right is one of the best ways to make your customers feel appreciated.
14. Share their stories – Salon clients love being featured on your salon’s social media pages. It makes them feel beautiful and special.
Take regular photos (sometimes before and afters with unique transformations) and share what a wonderful experience it was to have 'insert client name’ in the salon for a visit.
15. Birthday specials - While even just a basic “Happy Birthday” email has some positive benefit, add value by giving them a special offer.
You can create this and have messages sent automatically with our salon digital loyalty app.
16. Schwag - Stick your logo on some coffee mugs, t-shirts, phone cases, whatever. Let clients redeem their loyalty points for them or give them away as part of contests.
It’s a bit self-promotional, but people love getting free stuff and it makes them feel part of your community to be associated with your company outside of your salon.
17. Reply to reviews - Respond to everything on all channels. Most salons only respond to negative reviews. It’s equally important to respond to all the positive reviews, simply to say thank you to a satisfied customer who took the time to say something nice about you
18. Build a salon loyalty program - It doesn’t have to be complex, but providing your customers with points for their purchases is a natural way to show appreciation for their business.
It’s also somewhat expected in today’s day and age. Loyalty programs are incredibly effective at growing sales. Check out our article here that explains how engagement is the key to a successful salon loyalty program.
19. Think of the kids - The quickest way to a parent’s heart is something that can occupy or distract their young children.
A small play area, toys and/or lollipops for the kids is a great way to show a parent that you value their time and understand their challenges.
20. Loosen up the return policy - Many companies have become more reasonable in their return policies lately, and everyone loves doing business with one of the few who back up their products and services.
At minimum, consider adding special return policies to members of your loyalty program.
The more perks there are for loyalty members, the more people join and engage in the program.
21. Coffee and water – this is usually standard in the salon industry but if you’re not doing it, then you will stand out like a sore thumb!
Consider going the extra mile and offering a glass of wine at certain times of the week.
22. Samples - Yes, this works for Costco, but the concept works for beauty as well. A tester bar on certain products or sachets (you can often get these for free from your manufacturer or distributor) are all ways of promoting products as well as giving something of value to the customer.
23. Candy at the front desk - Put a bowl of candy anywhere and people will naturally gravitate to it. Think of all the places you love to visit because of the little treat that they have when you check out!
24. Do something extra - What’s the extra mile? Go there and do that. Pick up a customer whose car has broken down, offer to make a call to make one of their errands easier while they are sitting with you. These gestures can go a long way. Personal connections matter, and kind people do kind things for each other with no expectation of return.
25. Have a specific day/weed dedicated to customer appreciation - Having a Customer Appreciation Day or Week is basically big, public declaration that you appreciate your customers.
You might be able to get some local media coverage around it and it will allow you to bundle many of the ideas above together during that time period.
We’ve just come up with 25 simple ideas that your salon can do to show more appreciation to your clients. The interesting thing about this list is that
most salon companies don’t do many of these at all. That means implementing just a few of these ideas can really help you stand out and make a big
difference when it comes to customer retention.
Remember, like any successful relationship, the love has to go both ways. If you want your customers to show their love for you, you need to start by
showing your love for them!