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Sunday, August 17, 2014

Back to School Networking

     Back to school means back to networking. If you are a newer salon or if you have never networked with the schools before now is the time to get your plan together. September is a busy month for back to school so while you are getting your back to school specials rolled out take some time to get a marketing plan together for your area schools. Don’t just hit one, hit a few in your area.  Get inside and get to know the decision makers.  Fall is a great time to volunteer for fundraisers. Consider setting up a nail art station at a fall festival. These are usually set up by the PTA or PTO’s and getting the Presidents name is just a phone call to the board of education. If you have a child in that school consider joining the PTA or at least volunteering in some way.  You will network with some of the top influencers on your town.  It gets you in touch with all the events and their coordinators.  I still have the benefit of those relationships many years later when they need a beauty professional; I am top on their list due to the many hours I contributed and continue to contribute even today.  Remember the children you meet today are clients of the future. Leaving them with positive experiences and good education will leave a lasting impression.  You might even inspire some to become beauty professionals themselves.  
     Set up a teacher appreciation evening or Saturday afternoon. Teachers are some of the hardest working professionals around…they have to put up with our kids after all. Don’t limit yourself to public schools. Visit child care centers, beauty schools, dance schools, anywhere there are teachers. Treat them to an evening of mini mani’s and paraffin dips or exfoliating hand treatments and mini pedis, and don’t forget to include the guys. Once men get a taste of our spa services they will be hooked.  Raffle off a full service and leave them with a goody bag with a mini cuticle oil, hand cream and a discount for their first service.  Remind them you are available for teacher appreciation week and would love to contribute pampering services that week. I have taken several hours out of my day to go to the school and set up a mini spa experience that was truly rewarding. Several teachers came in for full services and continue to be clients today.  Even if they are not interested in services at the time encourage them to pay the offer forward to a friend or relative. 
Many high schools have a fashion club that meets after school. Contact your local high school and inquire about it and who the contact person is. Often times you can come in for a nail talk and educate these young people about proper nail care, sanitation and the ins and outs of artificial enhancements and current nail trends. This is the group that usually puts on the prom fashion show in the spring so you are well places for working with them and getting your name into this community. 

     Last but not least the schools are a great way to connect with the Girl Scout organization as many meetings are held there after school. As a former leader I can tell you these thankless volunteers are always looking for suggestions and help in the meeting department. Offering to come in and put together a manicure party will help them earn their health badge. Pairing up the girls with a manicure buddy and helping them learn proper nail care is rewarding for all. My niece was in my group many years ago and she actually just mentioned the skills she learned at an event last Sunday. Being of service to the community is really what being in a service business is all about. The more you serve, the more you deserve. So seek out opportunities to get involved with the school community and offer your knowledge and passion because that’s smart marketing.
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  1. Great read ...I agree with all the methods you have suggested ..Thank you