Growing any business requires knowledge, creativity, and a genuine passion for what you do. We love a lot about the hair and beauty industry, but we’re especially enthused about how much our barbers and stylists love their work.
Whether you’re just getting started or you’re a seasoned pro, knowing how to grow your barber business is an important component of your overall success.
From word-of-mouth marketing to increasing your industry presence, here are some tips for getting noticed, building your base, and staying busy.
1. Word-of-Mouth Marketing
Word-of-mouth marketing, also known as WOM marketing, is when your company or brand makes its way into daily conversations. A prime example of WOM marketing for hair salons and barbers are referral programs.
Essentially, if you’re figuring out how to grow your barber business on a personal level, word of mouth referral programs encourage your clients to spread the word. Sometimes, clients do this on their own without any incentive. They end up telling their best friend or colleague about your services because they like the work you do and they want to share it. This helps greatly if you’re wondering how to gain clients as a barber.
A step further encourages them to refer you to family and friends with the extra nudge of a percentage off or a free service here or there. Not only is this a free marketing strategy but it’s a great way to spread the word, spread the love, and build a solid customer base for your barber shop business.
2. Find the Right Space
Although you can give your clients tips and tricks virtually, you can’t cut and style their hair unless you’re physically present. So, taking that into consideration, finding the right space where your business can grow and flourish is important. Thankfully, today, there are a handful of ways you can find “your space.”
Some barbers do house calls, where they set up in the client’s kitchen, sip a cup of just brewed coffee, and get to work. Others combine the costs with like-minded barbers or hairstylists and go all-in on a monthly rental. Some barbers choose to go solo in a space that’s entirely their own.
Whatever path you take, finding—or creating—the right space is one of the keys to success. If you’re wondering how to grow your barber business, ask yourself, is your location working for you? Are you located on a remote street in a rural area and have to be found via referral and word of mouth? Or are you set up in a hot spot that gets a lot of foot traffic and walk-ins?
The “perfect” place will be different for everyone, so finding what works for you is key.
3. Use Online Booking
When it comes to how to grow your barber business, a simple but incredibly useful tool is online booking. Between the duties of work and life, it can be difficult for potential clients to find time to call the salon or barbershop. Coupled with the occasional wait time if the line is busy, your potential client may book with another place that’s more easily accessible.
Thankfully, online booking streamlines this process. It takes your client to a simple page, asks them to “book now”, and voila! There you have it—a new client and an organized time slot selection for them to choose from.
At StyleSeat, we make it simple for potential clients to check their availability. They can book easily through your calendar and if you’re all booked up, we’ll notify them if you get any cancellations.
4. Get on Google Maps
Getting on Google Maps may seem like a big task at first reserved for only the most elite of companies and brands. But—here’s a little secret. Getting on Google Maps is relatively easy, it just requires some clicking and confirming.
- First, go to Google My Business website.
- From there, you’ll create an account and fill in the details like your business name and address. Once you’re verified, you’ll receive a card with a verification code.
- Then, you’ll be all set to appear (and be found) on maps.
5. Increase Your Industry Presence
Whatever industry you’re in, effectively increasing your presence is a vital tactic for how to grow your barber business. Depending on the kind of barber you are and how you like to work, this can be done in a variety of ways.
For some people, increasing your barbering industry presence might mean attending training. For others, this may include focusing heavily on social media management and content creation. There’s no right or wrong way to put yourself out there. The most important thing you can do is find what makes you unique and what makes your clients click.
At the end of the day, you’ll be a happier barber if your seat is filled with people you like to engage with, the kind who are enthusiastic about what you do. You might be a pro at hot towel shaves just so in a way that makes your clients feel fresher than ever. Excellent! Make sure to post all about it on social and perhaps, mention it to a few people when you hand out your card at the next networking event.
Sometimes, when you’re building your business, it can be tough to figure out where the path may lead (but seeing how the dots connect is always part of the fun).
6. Create a Logo
Creating a logo is important for all kinds of reasons. First, it grabs the attention of your viewer and makes a strong impression. Not only will this separate you from your competitors, but it will help to construct your brand identity and add a bit of creative, personal flair to your promotional collateral.
Think of a cream-colored logo with black writing vs. a bright orange logo with pops of pink and purple? What does one say and what does the other say? The first may evoke a feeling of peacefulness; the second may scream upbeat fun.
When you narrow down the message you’re trying to convey with your brand, you can craft an authentic logo that speaks to both you and your style. It’s a creative and customizable plan for how to grow your barber business.
7. Build a Profile to Showcase Your Work
If you haven’t created a website for your work, don’t stress. It’s never too late to build your online presence.
In the past, some barbers went strictly off word-of-mouth and referrals. But, in our ever-growing digital age, having some sort of website or profile where you can showcase your work is one of the key components of landing new clients and keeping your business strong.
Today, there are plenty of different ways to build an online profile to showcase your work. One of the easiest ways, however, is to build your profile directly on StyleSeat so potential clients can find you in our database, view your work, reviews, and book you. If you’re wondering how to grow your barber business, there’s no better way to do that than by maximizing your online presence with your StyleSeat profile.
8. Manage Your Reviews
With every great haircut—comes a great story. But sometimes, getting clients to leave a review doesn’t happen without a little push. People are busy and racking up those reviews can be a challenge.
The good news is, once you start asking existing clients who you’re comfortable with if they’d be willing to leave a review, you’ll find they’re happy to do it. Doing hair and being a business owner is personal. Many times, when clients come to your barber chair, they’re sharing snippets of their daily life, family, and themselves. You’ll find, if you haven’t already, that when you ask them to leave a positive online review, they’ll do so with pride.
Alternatively, when you’re trying to figure out how to grow your barber business, it’s just as important to manage those negative online reviews, too. Maybe you had a bad day or got stuck with a tough client. They took to an online review and now you feel stuck. So, what do you do next?
If the complaint is something you can possibly fix with excellent customer service, try to. Responding in a positive way to the negative review will show the client you respect them. And sometimes, they’ll even come back for another appointment. Also remember that if the review is a completely crazy, untrue rant, you can ignore it (or flag it, if it seems like it’s from a competitor or someone fake).
9. Organize & Grow With StyleSeat
StyleSeat was created with the purpose of helping you figure out how to grow your barber business. We don’t just help you run your business, we help you earn more money and get exposure to millions of clients.
Whether we’re running ads to promote your profile across search engines and social media, keeping your schedule full, or identifying—and filling—your most popular time slots, we have you covered. As the #1 beauty and grooming marketplace for getting exposure to new clientele, we’re all about your growth as a barber and a brand. Interested in signing up? Get started and grow your barber business risk-free.
From managing reviews to creating your logo, we know figuring out exactly how to grow your barber business can feel overwhelming at first. If you could use a little extra help along the way, reach out to StyleSeat.
We’re here with business tips, marketing ideas, and most importantly—to help you keep growing and being a successful barber.