In the majority of salons, men make up a very small portion of the client base – in my experience, it’s generally less than 5%. However, we know that men are trying more treatments than ever before. The market is growing, and it is a relatively untapped sector for most businesses I work with.
Some salon owners are often slow to realise that there may be an opportunity here, but other enlightened ones are developing new and innovative ways to entice more men through their doors. So let’s explore how to expand your male salon or spa trade.
Like every other market category for clients, the challenge is always two-fold: firstly, how to attract the client into your business, and secondly, how to then convert that client into a long-term one.
Here are my top tips for increasing your male client business:
1Market to men: if you choose conventional advertising in your marketing plan, place your advertisements where men will see them, such as sports or business magazines or websites. And don’t forget about gift vouchers – for example, an advertisement promoting your Valentine’s Day gifts in the weekend game schedule can be a way to entice the men in.
2 Create an email list that is male specific: the most valuable male customer is the one buying a gift for someone special, such as his wife, girlfriend, mother or sister. Remember, what is well received will be purchased again. Use this email list to market your salon services as wise and welcome gift selections, making it easy for him to buy from you.
3 Upsell: if he is buying gifts from you on a regular basis, why not introduce a male price list? Have a separate ‘treatments for men’ one – the treatments don’t have to be different from the ones you offer to female clients, they just have to sound more masculine, while highlighting different benefits. Men are more focused on the results, rather than the protocol or ritual.
4 Create treatment packages for men: these will give them the opportunity to enjoy multiple services in a single visit, expose them to more treatment options and increase your retail opportunities.
5 Get the girls to do the selling: one of the easiest ways to entice a man into the salon is through his wife, girlfriend or daughter. Special occasions such as Christmas, Father’s Day and birthdays are all great opportunities to introduce your services to men. Send out a timely email to your client base, reminding them to think of your salon when they are buying for him.
6 Go for the body: most spas report that their most popular male service is massage therapy. Whether it is to relieve sports pain or reduce stress levels, men have sought out massage treatments since before Roman times.
7 Invest in skincare to meet the needs of a male clientele: most men make excellent retail clients – they want your advice about how to improve their appearance, and are happy to purchase professionally-recommended products.
8 Give your salon a male focus: make sure your interior is inviting to male clients. Avoid overly feminine colours when decorating and have a pleasant aromatherapy scent that is appealing to both sexes. A private treatment area should be available to men.
9 Try a ‘men only’ day or evening: this will ensure all your male appointments are booked in during the same period, making it easier for those who are nervous about an all-female environment.
If you find attracting a male clientèle helps to increases your profits, then you have a new market to build on.
Liz McKeon is an author, business coach, trainer and mentor, specialising in the hair, beauty and spa sector. For further information visit lizmckeon.com or call +353 86 386 1243.