Social Studies

An overview of the leading online platforms and best practices for salons and professionals.

 When it comes to great salon marketing, the ever-expanding social media and digital landscape has been nothing short of transformative. Perhaps the great leveler between large and small businesses, corporations and independent entrepreneurs, these innovations offer an array of powerful marketing tools and resources—often costing nothing more than time. With smartphones driving consumer connectivity and engagement in ways not thought possible a few years ago, smart small-businesses are in it to win it. Here is American Salon’s short list of resource options.

 Facebook has the largest online community with 1.35 billion members (152 million daily users in the U.S.). Point of Difference: Size and broad user demographics Value-Driver: Deep Analytics for business accounts Iconic: “Like”

 Instagram, a photo- and video-sharing community, has 300 million-plus monthly users (35 percent in the U.S.). Point of Difference: Photo-centric Value-Driver: Has a higher level of engagement than Facebook Iconic: The “selfie”

 Yelp is a U.S.-based free consumer review platform with 139 million-plus active monthly users. Point of Difference: Unedited consumer voice Value-Driver: Search-friendly Coolest Feature: Claim your business Iconic: Bad review stories

 YouTube is a video-sharing platform with 1 billion monthly users (20 percent in the U.S.). Point of Difference: Powered by Google Value-Driver: Beauty how-tos are among the site’s most-viewed content Coolest Features: Powerful analytics and “creator” support tools Iconic: DIY


• Set specific measurable goals that map larger salon/career goals

• Self-assess before getting started to measure progress

• Make a step-by-step “road map” to guide efforts against goals

• Acquire the resources required to get the job done, starting with education (i.e., books, blogs, seminars and webinars)

• Be connected to mentors and role models in the social space

• Get started—this is often the biggest block in moving forward

• Measure progress, adjust the plan and keep going


Social Media Thought-Leaders:

Mari Smith, Chris Brogan and Gary Vaynerchuk Free online educational resources including blogs, podcasts, links and more are found here. Pro-beauty digital coach Nina Kovner’s website offers a wealth of free educational resources to help salons navigate the ever-changing social landscape successfully.

YouTube: “How to” do just about anything (including social media) can be found by searching the site.

Help: Take the time to explore the help areas and official blogs of these sites.


Gordon Miller, American Salon’s Senior Director, Digital is a social media “evangelist” for the pro beauty industry.