You know the heart of your business and what it means to you. But how do you translate your passion into a brand clients will recognize and remember?
Whether we’re talking about clothing, restaurants, or even our favorite wine or craft beer, there’s a comfort and familiarity to some brands that keeps us coming back.
I’ll be the first to admit: I’m a sucker for the feel and tone of certain outdoor gear brands, and I love the branding of my favorite Irish pub in town for its silly yet relatable group of singing monks.
A business’s brand is ultimately how the world perceives them, and of course, that perception is made up of more than a well-designed logo. It’s everything: their mission statement, aesthetic, presence on social media platforms, and even how they interact with clients.
To help you create and cultivate a stronger brand identity for your salon, we put together a list of five areas to focus on — to help your brand shine a little brighter.
How to Build a Brand for Your Salon
Define Your Mission
If you don’t have one already, you’ll want to first make sure you have a straightforward, action-oriented mission statement. It should sum up your commitment to your clients. It should also lay out your purpose and let your clients know what you’re all about.
You can, and should, write down a mission statement for your business. According to business coach and former salon owner, Nina Tulio, taking the time to explain “what makes your business unique to someone you trust” is an easy way to help you put words to how you feel about your business and its purpose.
Getting to know your salon’s mission is the perfect time to reflect on what you’re bringing to the world, to your industry, and to your clients specifically.
And of course, whatever your mission statement is or becomes — as they can evolve over time — you want it to be reflected in everything you do, from your social media presence, to your website, your business cards, and— this is huge! —the way you interact with clients.
Find Your Clients
In the same way a killer standup comedian knows her audience, you’ll want to get to know your target clients. Try this exercise:
How to Define Your Target Clients
- Who are my clients?
- What do they do for fun?
- What are their motivations, their pain points, their goals?
- And how can my salon help?
Sonia Gregory of Fresh Sparks, a branding agency specializing in brand strategy and identity, says one of the keys to building a stronger brand is to be as specific as you can when thinking about your clients: “Solidify a picture of your consumers, then learn how to create a brand identity that they can understand and relate to.”
Once you know who your target clients are, you’ll have a better idea of the direction you want to take your brand.
Cultivate Your Brand
After you’ve established your mission and who your clients are, you’re ready to let your heart and passion shine! Here’s where you can really distinguish yourself from your competitors by showing off your individual flair in all the ways, such as your logo and your website.
A lot of pressure is put on a good logo, and rightly so. It’s likely to be one of the first things a client will see when they come across your salon.
If you have the skillset to design your own logo, that’s great! But since we all can’t be marketing and branding gurus, there are plenty of sites out there where design professionals can pitch you an idea for a logo based on what you’re looking for, such as Fiverr.
Either way you go, there are a couple items you’ll want to think about for your logo.
Do you want to go with a serif font, where the letters are a little more classical and formal, or do you want a sans serif font, where things are a little more modern and minimal? (Check out Easil for some pro tips on the difference between the two, including visuals.)
We’ve also heard that a lot of salon and beauty businesses are finding success with handwritten fonts, as it adds a touch of elegance and sophistication to the brand.
3. Color Scheme
The colors you choose for your logo come with their own tone and feel as well, and you want those colors to match the atmosphere of your salon.
The website Wellyx explains that people have “psychological contact with different colors, and the strategic use of brand and logo colors can seriously affect the audience’s perception of your brand.” They even have a great breakdown on how certain colors affect our brains differently.
At the end of the day, you want your logo to be simple and carry the spirit of your salon. What font represents your passion best? What colors carry that laid back attitude or sophistication you’re looking for?
Like your logo, your website may be one of the first places a client comes into contact with your business. So while it’s a great place to showcase your work, it also gives clients a feel for the personality of your salon.
Keep in mind: Since you’re in a creative industry, how your website looks can say a lot about your business.
Jessica Dennehy, author and co-founder of Mad Men Barbershop in Long Island, says the key to a strong brand is to focus on the lifestyle your brand represents.
“At Mad Men, we have crafted a lifestyle brand that customers cannot get enough of. Our advertisements and social media make you want to live the life our brand represents. That’s how you create a strong brand identity.”
So when you’re coming up with a design and tone for your website, think again about your audience:
- What kind of clients do you want to attract? And what are they interested in?
- What’s their favorite music or their favorite movies?
- What kind of content will they engage with?
- What will keep them coming back?
The more you work to get your brand out there, the more clients will see it, and the more likely clients will begin to recognize and remember your salon. Think about what makes your business unique, then focus on that as you utilize all the avenues you can to spread the good news about you and what’s going on at your salon.
Instagram. Facebook. YouTube. Clubhouse. (Maybe TikTok if your clients are into it?!)
Whether you’re sharing pictures of a happy client’s new haircut, sharing your own story, or spreading the word about current discounts you’re offering, social media is an easy way to get your brand out there.
Just remember: be consistent and stay true to the tone of your brand across whatever platforms work for you.
Social Media Marketing 101
Deep-dive into trends, tools, and hashtags that will take your brand – and small business – to the next level.Get the Guide
Communication is crucial for growing business, and email marketing campaigns are easy ways to keep your brand in front of your clients.
Why not set up a regular monthly newsletter? Or send out Thank You emails to clients after their appointments? Or, if you happen to be running a special on a specific service next month, why not get the word out now so clients are in the know?
Local Search Results (AKA Local SEO)
Put simply: SEO is the process of making your business easy to find through Google and other search engines.
Sure. SEO can seem a little daunting or confusing, but there are so many benefits to digging into and working on your local SEO.
- It’s free advertising
- It builds trust with Google
- And it saves you time
Check out this article for more info on local SEO and how it can help your business.
However and wherever clients come across your business (your brand!), you want it to feel consistent. That means your logo, website, social media, business cards — even the signage in your salon — should be instantly recognizable as yours.
Professional Beauty talks about harnessing the power of repetition and consistency. They point out that “consistent and repetitive use of your visual materials” is so important to build an “enduring and powerful brand for your business.”
That means when clients come across your business, you want to not only make a strong impression, you want to continue to make a strong, consistent impression each time they interact with your business.
Consistency is key to being remembered, and if a client remembers your website or one of your fun social media posts, the next time they need a haircut, they’ll think of your salon. Or who knows, they may even tell a friend about how much they love your style.