Graham Jones is a Visiting Lecturer at the University of Buckingham and an Associate Lecturer at The Open University in the UK. Jones, B.Sc., B.A., Adv.Dip.Ed., MBPsS, M.Ed. M.Sc., is a qualified psychologist, the author of 32 books, and an award-winning writer and speaker who contributes regularly to a wide range of publications and speaks at conferences and events around the world.
According to the American Association of Cosmetology Schools, there are more than one million people employed in the salon sector, of which around 35% are self-employed. That’s a lot of cosmetologists – all vying for business.
So just how can you stand out from the crowd? What do you need to do so clients will want your services over your competitors’? Apart from doing great work and getting recommendations from existing clients, the Internet has one answer: blogging.
The Potential for a High Following Is There
Writing a beauty blog certainly attracts an audience. For instance, UK-based beauty blogger Zoella has a massive following, with over nine million YouTube subscribers, 2.5 million “likes” on Facebook, and 3.8 million people who follow her tweets. Plus there are another six million people who follow her on Instagram and tens of thousands on Pinterest, too. There is clearly a ready and willing audience yearning for information about beauty.
So How Will Followers Turn into Clients?
The crucial question for cosmetologists is: How will this help me increase my client base? The answer lies in a piece of psychology associated with how we assess risk.
Your clients trust you, but potential customers have nothing to go on, unless they get a personal recommendation from someone who has used your services. How else can they judge how great you are?
Using any business’s services is a risk, but when it comes to beauty, the risk is greater because it’s so personal. If a cosmetologist flubs up a skin treatment, hairstyle or cut, or makeup job, there’s a large chance that the client will be upset, as it could be expensive or take a lot of time to fix the error. This is a big risk for a potential client.
Customers Want to Reduce Risk
Whenever we buy anything, a variety of “risk aversion” strategies come into play. One of those is assessing a service provider’s popularity. For instance, if you want a meal and you visit your city’s downtown area, you’re less likely to choose an empty restaurant, and more likely to opt for one with many customers happily eating. The empty restaurant is a bigger risk there’s no “evidence” that it’s worthwhile.
Similarly, clients of beauty specialists need to see that you, the cosmetologist, are popular. Having a waiting list, not being able to book appointments for several days, and keeping people in your salon or spa are all ways in which your potential customer’s risk is reduced, and trust is gained.
However, many people start online when looking for a cosmetologist. Often, all your potential customers can see online is a website saying how great you are and details about the services you provide. But all cosmetologists’ websites say that…so how can a potential client be sure to select the right person (in this case, you)?
Blogging Demonstrates Knowledge
This is where your beauty blog comes in. By using a blog, you can demonstrate your knowledge, show that you know what you’re talking about, and establish credentials. All these things help reduce risk, making you more attractive for the potential client. Also, a beauty blog provides a psychological factor known as “social proof.” When potential clients see that your blog is followed by others, they interpret this as evidence that you’re supported by others, thereby adding a further level of reassurance that you are the right cosmetologist to choose.
If you want to gain more clients, establishing a successful blog is an important factor in boosting trust and credibility, especially if you tap into the client’s psychological need to reduce risk. The more you demonstrate your expertise, the more current and potential clients will trust you.
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