Tips For Creating Content That Drives Business

Our most recent and upcoming Better Business Digital Supplement are sponsored by Redken, Matrix, PureOlogy, L’Orèal Professional, Mizani, Baxter of California, SalonCentric, Essie and Decleor–this is must-see content that you don’t want to miss.

Want to build an effective presence? First, you’ll have to decide when to create your own content and when to curate content from other sources, LIKE SHARING FROM FACEBOOK OR REGRAMMING FROM Instagram.

Twenty or 30 years ago, traditional word-of-mouth was the only way to build a client base, but with the Internet and a proliferation of online social media platforms, clients are now talking online and off. Nina Kovner, founder of Passion Squared, a company that helps support creative small businesses, tells hairdressers to ask themselves one important question: Is your client’s offline experience consistent with their online experience? After all, many potential clients encounter your online presence before they ever walk through the door of your salon.

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“Awesome offline experiences create awesome online reviews,” Kovner says. “You can have a killer salon, but if you don’t have a social media presence, you won’t maximize your potential for success.”

There isn’t a black-and-white approach to creating or curating compelling content, but committing to building relationships online and understanding the power of social media to create leads and increase revenue is a start. Guy Kawasaki, co-author of The Art of Social Media: Power Tips for Power Users, says that the biggest challenge of social media is finding enough content to share. The good news is that it’s not necessary to only post original content in order to build a strong online presence. In fact, stylists who are looking to succeed online should focus on curating great images and posts from other sources to share on their social media platforms instead of focusing only on creating original content. However, there is a purpose and value to both content creation and content curation.

CONNECTING TO BRAND VALUES

Before you test the waters of social media—Facebook, Instagram and Yelp are the three biggest drivers of business—it’s important to have a clear understanding of your brand’s story or mission statement. Everything you share should be in line with brand values. One important question to ask when crafting your online identity is, how can I add value to my online audience and what content is relevant to my brand purpose and story?

The bottom line: Without a strong brand identity, any content curation will be unfocused and unsuccessful. On the other hand, having a strong brand identity will help you to pick and choose the best content to share on your social media platforms. For example, “regramming” is a great way to curate content. Let’s say a client shares a selfie of the new cut or color you just did. Regramming it on your Facebook or Instagram pages gets the word out to a wide audience. The result? Someone who likes what they see will find a phone number or a link to your website (that you can include in your post) where they can conveniently book an appointment.

For hairdressers and other beauty professionals who spend hours every day engaging with clients in real-time and sharing product information, mastering the art of social media should be a breeze. After all, social media is all about being social, and it's an ongoing conversation. So, if you put a quote on your Facebook page and then don’t post anything else for a month, you’re not being social. If you only post only once a week, it won’t be enough to create engagement. Social media is about conversing online. The good news for hairdressers is that image-driven platforms like Facebook and Instagram are made for them. However, Kovner suggests that if you’re just starting out, choose one platform to master before moving on to the rest. >

CONTENT CURATION AND CREATION HELP

Both Redken and Pureology provide salons retailing their brands access to box.com where they can request product images for use on their social media platforms and other salon promotional areas. Redken also has a tool specifically for beauty professionals called Redken Facebook Content Creator, which creates content that automatically posts to your Facebook page. More specifically, all content is related to Redken’s styling collection including product imagery, consumer testimonials and how-to videos.

FEEDING THE CONTENT MONSTER

So what is content creation? Taking a picture is creating content. Making a video is content. Even commenting on what you learned at a professional educational event counts as original content. Another tip: Blogs don’t have to be long-form writing. They can be as short as 100 words or as long as 2,000 words. As a beauty professional, it’s helpful to not only pay attention to what your manufacturers offer you, but also notice what other stylists and professional beauty companies are sharing. Sharing their images on your Instagram page or other social media platforms is a great way to curate content.

TIPS FOR GREAT CONTENT CURATION

  •  Share posts from those people you follow on social media. Pick the best content to share and remember to only share that content that relates to your brand or story.
  •  Piggyback on curation services such as Redken Content Creator.
  •  Share what's already popular within your network. Something that's trending on Twitter may not be trending on Facebook.
  •  Use lists, circles, communities and groups to share content. These lists or groups share a common interest and can become a powerful tool to find great content to curate.
  •  Create a collaborative Pinterest board and invite people who are great curators of content related to your field.

TIPS FOR GREAT CONTENT CREATION

  •  Do your posts pass the share test?
  •  Use content creator tools
  •  Be valuable
  •  Be interesting
  •  Be brief
  •  Be thankful
  •  Be visual
  •  Be organized

Salons retailing Pureology products can register at pureology.com/images to download content to share.

➔ We rounded up a few examples of beauty professionals and programs that highlight effective content creation and curation strategies.

NAME Dominic Greco-Trupia

WHO HE IS A Redken Certified Design Stylist and Salon Partner at Industry 80 Salon in Tuckahoe, New York

FIND HIM AT @industry80 on Instagram, at facebook.com/Industry80 and industry80.com

WHY HE MATTERS By using Redken Content Creator, he boosted views of his Facebook posts by 348 percent in less than a year. It constantly updates his Facebook page with fresh images promoting new ideas for styling and product knowledge. It makes things a little easier if you miss a day or two of posting. His clients love hearing about new products and what’s hot with color each season. Ninety percent of what the salon shares is original content, like client photos, but they occasionally curate content from other sources like Redken content. 

NAME Evie Johnson

WHO SHE IS Certified Trichologist, platform stylist/educator for Mizani and owner of E&E Hair Studio in Upper Marlboro, Maryland

STATS 20K followers on Instagram

FIND HER AT @contactevie on Instagram and styleseat.com/eviejohnson

WHY SHE MATTERS Johnson is an excellent content creator and curator and has a large following on Instagram. She highlights the importance of mastering one platform before moving on to others. Johnson primarily uses her Instagram page to spread the word about her work and to inspire her online community. Her feed is a combination of professional and personal images. She has posted about finally getting to see the Tower of London, sent thank you’s and shout out’s to fans and other beauty professionals, always remembering to tag those who have shared her posts. She also shares original content, including photos of her work.

NAME Style Link Recipe Gallery and Mix Makers

WHAT IT IS A collection of hairstyles, lengths and textures that Matrix stylists can search using the QR Code on the back of Style Link product bottles.

WHY IT MATTERS The link provides stylists with online how-tos for each look that can be accessed through any digital device. It also provides access to the global Style Link community, where stylists can grab screenshots of their favorite looks for inspiration. In the recipe gallery, you can choose to see the highest-rated recipes created by other Matrix stylists and can even upload your own links into the gallery after using the formulas.

NAME Matrix “Eye for Style” Program Pivot Head Initiative

WHAT IT IS Wearable technology geared toward beauty professionals

WHY IT MATTERS It leverages wearable technology from a service perspective to create content that can be shared socially. The first phase of the program featured The Blogger Video Series, but other uses for this technology include educating Matrix salon professionals by allowing stylists to study with their favorite educators online. The initial video lineup includes a color and cut tutorial with Artistic Director Christopher Benson and a long-hair upstyling program led by Nicolas French. Using Pivot Head wearable technology, French and Benson can record their classes and post them online for stylists to review whenever they need a refresher.

➻ CONTENT CREATION

Douglas McCoy took his cue from Andy Warhol when he opened House of POp, his salon in Spokane, Washington, where he's hoping to channel the kind of creativity that existed at The Factory, Warhol's studio in New York City. McCoy is not only a talented hairdresser but also a gifted photographer, who shoots all of the work he uses to promote his business in-house. The black and white photograph is the type of content he creates to regularly feed the social media monster.

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