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You know the drill: There’s a mad rush to book appointments between Thanksgiving and Christmas, and then – come January and February – business lags. What’s a salon owner to do? You can start by checking out these practical tips for keeping revenue flowing steady into the New Year.

But wait a minute! 2017 isn’t over quite yet.

Technically, you still have a few days to capitalize on the December holiday hype. And if you play your cards right, you can ensure new business in the New Year. It’s simple: Sell last-minute gift cards at your salon, for clients who haven’t finished their holiday shopping. Who knows? You might even snag a few new customers for the long-term.

Spread that holiday cheer.

It’s not too late to send out holiday cards to your clients. Wish your guests a happy New Year, and include a special code that can be used if they book an appointment by a certain date. We know it’ll cost a few extra bucks, but sending cards by snail mail will have a bigger impact since clients probably have their eyes peeled for fun holiday cards. You might also blast out an e-card on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day, containing a special offer for those who book before New Year’s Day.

Help clients keep their resolutions.

Oh, January! That magical time when you can’t ever find a seat in your regular spinning class because everyone – everyone! – is at the gym, trying to make good on their promises to get into shape, live healthier, and feel better. There are plenty of ways stylists can ride the resolution bandwagon, too. Promote haircuts that’ll make clients look slimmer, naturally. Or offer up a skin treatment to take years off the face — no surgery required!

Share resolutions on social media.

Go ahead, and make a few “beauty resolutions” of your own. Then post quotes and memes on social media, to inspire your clients and potential customers to make a few “beauty resolutions” of their own. Hopefully they’ll come to you when they’re ready to fulfill those resolutions. 

Add a new service to your menu.

It’s a new year: Are you ready for something new? You can generate buzz around your salon by adding a new service that your clients will love. Introduce the service in January, but start talking about it now to get your clients excited. Alternatively – or additionally! – you can add a great new product to your shelves in 2018.

Try running a “New Year, New You” marketing campaign.

Many clients will be looking to become better versions of themselves in 2018. You can help them out by introducing a “New Year, New You” promotion. Pick a few services you’re great at providing, and roll out a package that’s sure to attract clientele during the post-holiday slump. You can combine any of the following into a great New Year package: cut and color services, a blowout, a mani/pedi treatment, a facial with a soothing shoulder massage, waxing, or makeup application with instruction.

Host an open house.

Open your doors to extra business by inviting clients in for an open house in January. Plan out a special afternoon or evening that features mini-treatments, lessons on the perfect blowout, giveaways, product samples, and plenty of demonstrations.

Offer free consultations in January.

Encourage clients to drop in for a free consultation. Talk about their 2018 needs and goals, and help them hash out a plan. Does a client want to be a blonde by summer? Is she preparing for an especially busy wedding season? Get color and style appointments booked now! Hoping to have long hair by fall? Then talk to them about growth, visits, and extensions.   

Kick off 2018 with a sale.

Many clients will be strapped for cash when the holiday shopping season ends. If there’s retail you’re wanting to move, consider discounting those products in January, as a post-holiday special.

Baby it’s cold outside!

If the New Year theme feels a little tired, play up the wintry weather instead, by providing special services that address common seasonal issues such as dry hair, dry skin, and damaged cuticles. While you’re at it, consider educating clients, too, on what happens to hair and skin when the air gets drier. Make sure to suggest a few retail items that might help alleviate the problems.

Think beyond Christmas.

We know the major holiday season is wrapping up, but there’s still plenty of holiday-themed marketing to capitalize on in the New Year. Think ahead to Valentine’s Day, for example, by encouraging clients to book heavenly pampering sessions early — before you fill up. There’s also Groundhog Day on February 2, when you can encourage clients to “come out of winter hibernation” for a quick winter refresh. The Chinese New Year happens in February, too, and after that comes Mardi Gras, leaving plenty of room for creative stylists to key their marketing campaigns to fun holidays.

Let SolaGenius help pick up the slack.

Send a text using SolaGenius. Something along the lines of: “Book an appointment before December 31 to get a special offer!” That offer can be a retail discount or an add-on service like deep conditioning, shine, or an express facial.

Stay productive during slumps.

Take time during the downtime to get ready for the rest of 2018. Use Sola Pro to update your Sola webpage, making sure it’s informative and includes lots of great photos. If you need inspiration, look at the social media pages other Sola owners have created. We also recommend making time to watch a few of the educational videos on Sola Pro, and don’t forget to mark your calendar for a 2018 Sola Session. Getting your strategies in place for a more efficient 2018: Now that’s the way to Run Your Sola Like a Boss!

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