As much as you might be tempted to say “no cell phones in the salon,” this approach could offend and backfire with clients. Here are some ideas for salon cell phone policy that take client preferences, marketing and your salon’s atmosphere into account.
Just Say No to a No Cell Phone Policy in the Salon
Most of your clients are using their cell phones for everything from calling, texting and emailing to dealing with important work matters and posting on social media platforms. Some people don’t seem to do anything without posting about it on Facebook and Instagram.
While a client’s unwillingness to disconnect during an appointment might be annoying for a stylist, you can actually use it to your advantage.
If you move forward with a salon cell phone policy that mandates client cell phone use in the salon, there’s a good chance that you could offend many of your clients.
We recently came across a social media update where salon owners were weighing in on whether banning cell phone use in the salon is a good idea. One of the salon owners wrote,
“My salon, my business, my rules! Clients aren’t allowed to use cell phones in my salon!”
Our first thought was, “Wow, that’s a great idea if you want all of your clients to be grumpy old men who hate technology!”
It’s simply not practical to assume that a policy banning the use of cell phones in the salon creates the environment that every client wants during their appointment. Nor is a salon cell phone policy that prohibits the use of phones compassionate, especially when your clientele includes busy working professionals who need to remain available to co-workers or customers, parents that need to check in with kids, or whose friends or loved ones might need to contact them in case of emergency. Indeed, many of your clients may not feel that you have the right to tell them whether they can use technology in your salon since they are paying for your services, not signing up for a phone-free environment.
A no cell phone policy isn’t good marketing, either. Your salon could grow more quickly and engage followers online by taking before and after photos for your website and social media. Your salon marketing could benefit even more when you encourage your clients to check in via wifi, share photos of your work, leave reviews and otherwise make public endorsements of your brand on social media and review sites.
In particular, you should encourage clients to use their cell phones in the salon so that you take full advantage of social media for your brand. There are stylists on Instagram with hundreds of thousands of followers who are showing off their work each and every day, like Los Angeles-based Kristen Ess, the owner and co-founder of thebeautydepartment.com and Chrissy Rasmussen, the owner of Habit Salon in Arizona.
Just Say Yes to a Salon Cell Phone Policy that Helps You Grow Your Business
It is likely that many of your clients already post photos of their fresh manicures and hair styles to social media. Ask them if you can post a photo of their beautiful new look on Instagram and Facebook (and tag them so that your updates are visible to their networks). If they are posting your work on social networks ask them to tag your salon’s accounts in their own posts.
Social media can take having a portfolio to a higher and more competitive level. If you are an owner, create Facebook and Instagram accounts for your salon and ask clients to check in to your salon on Facebook and leave feedback. Also, ask them to tag your salon in posts regarding their experience. Yes, you may occasionally receive feedback that is not positive but most of the time you will probably see posts from happy clients who want to show off their new ‘do or recommend you or your salon to their friends.
While a salon owner should set guidelines for staff use of cell phones in the salon, stylists, too can help attract clients if they are encouraged to snap before and after shots of their work and post it to their own networks, tagging both your salon account and their client’s account in order to extend post reach.
If a client’s use of a cell phone is genuinely interfering with your ability to provide their service, politely explain how it’s affecting your work and ask whether they can wait until you’ve finished to use their cell phone. Remember to err on the side of compassion for your clients, realizing that things can come up without notice and using their phone might be a necessity.
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