It’s no secret that big brands spend big bucks on their sales strategies. After all, selling products boosts profits and at the heart of every business is making money. Big brands typically have anywhere from a few dozen to several hundred SKUs to worry about selling, so creating an effective, efficient sales plan is a necessity. Savvy salons can put these same big budget ideas to work for their retail business.
While the average salon may not have quite the same number of products to worry about, there is no reason why you can’t adopt some of the same strategies that have been tried and tested by larger companies. The first one you’ll want to consider is the Hero Strategy. This hyper-focused approach to product sales can not only help you boost your retail bottom line, but with a little creative thinking, may help you re-evaluate your service offerings as well.
What is a Hero Strategy?
Traditional retail approaches typically focus on selling as much product as quickly as possible. There is usually a focus on moving old and unpopular products, quickly. The Hero Strategy takes the opposite stance. Instead, this approach focuses on what products sell well and uses them as the foundation for your sales strategy. This doesn’t mean that you will never promote a “non-hero” product or service, it simply means that the majority of your efforts will be focused on the ones that are most likely to generate additional revenue.
Applying the mentality of playing to your strengths helps to streamline efforts and marketing investment by following a simple, 3-step formula: Identify, Promote & Assess.
Identify your Hero Products
The first step in building your Hero Strategy is to identify which products are your best-sellers. Pretty much every product-based business operates by something called Pareto’s Principle which states that 80% of sales are likely to come from 20% of products.
This idea is easiest to approach when it comes to evaluating your retail products, but as we’ll see in a moment, the same idea can be applied to your service offerings.
If you take some time to review your retail sales from the past year, it’s likely that you’ll see two or three products that consistently outsell the rest. These are your hero products.
You’ll be focusing on them a lot, so make sure you are really knowledgeable about what makes them wonderful and how much volume for each you are typically selling per week. You’re going to want to be sure to keep enough product on hand to meet the current demand, as well as the increase we will be focusing on creating.
When it comes to services, you can take the exact same approach, simply review your overall service sales and determine which ones are the most requested. Feel free to get pretty specific here, instead of stopping at “haircolor” and “cuts”, consider narrowing these down to specifics like “blonding” or “long layered cuts”. This will help you target your efforts later in the process.
Promote Your Hero Products
Once you’ve identified your hero products and services, it’s time to talk them up. Don’t be afraid to make your heroes the focal point of your business. Your best-selling products and services should be front and center in your physical space as well as your digital properties.
In the salon this looks like focusing your retail displays, and in-salon marketing materials on your hero products. Be sure to have samples on hand and testers for clients to try. Incorporate your hero products into every appointment. This doesn’t always have to mean using the product, you may just mention it, the point is, it should make an appearance in some form.
You could also consider showcasing your hero services in the salon. This could be as simple as displaying examples of your work around the salon or your station. You can support your best-selling services by having them form the basis of the imagery in your space.
When it comes to your digital presence, your heroes deserve top-billing. Your salon website homepage, social media cover and profile photos and email headers are a great place to start. You can also build a digital marketing strategy from the basis of focusing on one hero product or service at a time.
Would you like to see a sample Hero Digital Marketing Plan? Tell Us in the Comments!
Assess/Adjust Your Strategy
Finally, you’ll want to continuously evaluate and update your hero strategy. While some products and services can be consistent best-sellers all year long, others fluctuate from season to season. Customers needs change and sometimes seeing the same thing presented the same way over and over again can get stale. You may need to make adjustments in how you are approaching your sales.
Another strategy that is often used by big companies that you may want to consider “borrowing” to boost your business, is a focus group. First, you’ll want to identify of clients that you can get honest feedback from. You can offer them discounts or occasional samples in order to thoroughly review and offer constructive feedback on your approach. After all, at the end of the day, it is your clients who will determine how successful your sales strategies are, their feedback is invaluable.
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