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Tried and true: PBA member Scott J. shares his Groupon success!

PBA is excited to share a new benefit for Preferred and Business Members! We’re partnering with Groupon to offer salon and spa owners an opportunity to host new online promotions. We chatted with PBA Business Member Scott J. Buchanan, owner of Scott J. Aveda Salon. Scott frequently uses Groupon promotions as a marketing tool to support his business, and he’s sharing a few tips he found help make Groupon more successful.

Scott has experimented with Groupon since it became a marketing tool nearly two decades ago. “We tried it early on when Groupon opened about fifteen years ago. We had a large spa and the amount of Groupons sold was astronomical. We had to implement systems to only allow a certain number of Groupon guests per day.” Scott recommends a few tips to manage the promotion before your first Groupon client even walks in the door!

  • Decide on a quantity of Groupons to offer for sale. This way, you can better predict a flow of new clients.
  • Plan your promotion around slower business phases or new services, and avoid offering tons of promotions around the holidays when the salon is naturally more busy.
  • Review stylists’ schedules so you can book Groupon clients evenly across your staff.

Today, Scott continues to use Groupon as a tool to build clientele, expand his brand in the digital space, and create referrals for his five salon locations in the Upper East Side, Upper West Side, Brooklyn Heights, Morningside Heights and SOHO.

Scott explains that Groupon is a great way for beauty businesses to reach new guests who have just moved to the neighborhood or who are searching for a new stylist. “Many clients who are new to the area start on the Groupon website to find nearby salons with affordable first-visit services, so they can find the right salon or stylist fit and then become regular clients.”

Through several rounds of highly successful Groupon promotions, Scott has learned a few valuable tips for using Groupon as a powerful business tool in the salon. “The promotions should be managed. For example, we set a limit for how many Groupons can be purchased per month or campaign. That way you can control traffic flow. We also disperse Groupon clients evenly across the salon staff. Rather than filling a Master stylist’s schedule with Groupon-based appointments, we help build our other stylists’ books with these new clients.”

Each salon and spa will find its own balance of how many Groupons to offer, how to book staff with new clients, and when to time promotions throughout the year. Over the years, Scott’s found that Groupon is a better acquisition tool than Instagram and even word of mouth referrals (thanks partly to Groupon’s online reviews feature), and the promos boost the business with extra revenue and increased guest counts. Another benefit of Groupon is the opportunity for client reviews! A simple tip to boost your online reputation is to ask clients to leave a review when they check out after a service. More positive reviews equal more credibility, which can bring in even more new clients!

If you’re concerned that Groupon promotions won’t yield as much revenue as a standard service, Scott explains that is often not the case. “Most clients build on tickets, so the Groupon promotion will still come out to the price of a standard service with the addition of add-on treatments or product sales.” Additionally, you can track the demographics of customers who purchase Groupons through your Groupon account dashboard. This gives business owners greater understanding to the age, gender and purchasing habits of new clients and established clientele. To help build out a Groupon ticket, it’s important to brief your stylists on promoting add-on services and following up appointments with product sales to help clients achieve their new styles at home. These are smart business practices to use even during regular services!

If you’re interested in trying Groupon as a tool to help build your salon and spa clientele, promote your business and reach new markets, become a PBA Member today to access this new opportunity! Already a PBA Member? Learn more about the new Groupon Member promotion here!