If you are doing a build out in a retail center, your plan will differ from a Salon Boutique or Booth Rental.
Today we will address the steps you should take to get your Business off to a great start in a Retail Center.
Sparking interest long before you open the doors to Clients, there are a few things I would recommend you do.
First, let’s get a banner in the window. There are many sign shops that can help you with this if your skills in this area are lacking. You can do this on your computer and put it on a thumb drive or disk and take it to a printer. Unless you have sophisticated equipment at home, this is best done by a professional.
The things you want to say on your banner should include the Name of your business, and the Services you are offering. You should also include the tentative opening date, hours of operation and any retail products you will carry. By getting a head start on your advertising, you create a buzz in your community. I don’t know about you, but I am a little nosey and am always curious about any new business that is going to open in my neighborhood. When I have done this in the past, I have seen potential clients drive up, get out of their vehicle and read the banner in the window.
It’s always wise to print up some flyers and put them in a clear plastic style box outside your front door. This gives your potential client a written copy of your New Business and all the information they will need. Putting a covered box on the outside of your door, like a real estate agent does isn’t possible, you can ask your neighbor tenants in the same center to place these flyers in their business for their customers to take with them. Your potential clients will ask them who will be occupying the space you are going in. Trust me, people are curious. They will ask. By having printed out materials, you can get your info out in the community a lot sooner.
Make sure you include the Salon phone number, website, Instagram and Face Book page information.
This is important to have a place for potential clients to have access to your business information, photos of your work and the work of any employees you will be bringing onboard.
Just a side note** If you still need to hire, make sure you include that information on your banner and website. You would be surprised at who will be looking at this. You just may score a new hire. **
Another important tip is to have your New Business phone number listed and have a recorded message with all the information you can. Business Name, Hours of operation, Services you will offer, Retail products you are offering and a reference to your website and other Social Media outlets you are listed on. Encourage your potential clients to check out your work there prior to your opening.
Putting a contact form on your website for potential clients to fill out and ask questions is a very good idea. This gives your potential clients an opportunity to get questions answered before you open your doors.
In the past I would include any opening promotions you will be offering on all Social Media. A percentage off, a two for one, and bring a friend are just a few ideas to get you started.
I also had one of my Vendors offer freebies for my opening and we also had posted a raffle for the first 30 people in the door. The Grand Prize was a Beach Bike. This was donated by a very generous Vendor. Please don’t forget to ask for these goodies. Again, this creates a buzz in the community. We want to get people in the doors.
Work with your City, Village or Community Chamber of Commerce, and City Planners for help getting your name out in the Community as well. Believe it or not, these resources are designed to help grow and build the community. It is their job to foster good will between your business, the city and the community. We don’t have to go it alone, just reach out and ask. They will coordinate with you for a Grand Opening and will promote this in the news media,and on the community website. It doesn’t hurt to have these folks on your side as you grow in your community. There is nothing nicer that being recognized in your community with a ribbon cutting ceremony!
There are multiple other options that you can take advantage of. Local Bridal shops, Photographers and Wedding Planners are another source of Marketing. Offer your Salon for them to use as a back drop for a Photo Shoot. Offer to host a Bridal Fashion Show, and cross promote with Wedding Planners for your business. These are non-traditional forms of Marketing and Advertising your business, but can create long term Professional relationships. Be creative, think outside of the box. Don’t be afraid to use your imagination here. You only get one shot at making a first impression.
So, lets recap the strategies you should be taking advantage of to get the buzz rolling months before you actually turn the key to opening your New Business.
Get a banner in the window of your New Business at least 60 days prior to your opening. Get your website tweaked and ready for viewers. Make sure your Social Media pages are fresh and up to date with your work. Get your Vendors involved, work with your city resources and last but not least, Bridal shops, Wedding Planners and Photographers to round out your Advertising and Marketing plan.
I wish you all the best in a successful launch.