Timely’s Guide to Salon and Spa Blogs: How to get it done
Now all you have to do is get those brilliant ideas down on paper.
1. Write your salon blog
This is the part that has some of you sweating a little bit. Don’t worry! You already know what you want to say, and I’ve got a few tips to help you organise your words. There isn’t one blog formula that will work for everything you write, but as long as you keep it visually appealing, you’ll be on the right track.
Grace’s usual writing style is to “vomit it all onto the page” (her words) and then wade through the half-written sentences and pull them into something usable. So don’t feel bad if your first draft is a mess! Just get in there and pull it into shape.
It’s helpful to break up your text under headings and subheadings if your blog is over 600 words. This creates a clear flow to your work, and allows the reader to scan for information most relevant to them.
Imagery is essential in blog content. Not only does it create a visual interest point, it gives your text meaning – especially for those who prefer to scan articles.
A good rule of thumb is to incorporate one image for every 350 words of text.
Choose imagery that reinforces the marketing messages of your brand and the content of your article.
If your clients give you permission, before and after shots (especially in the Hair and Beauty industries) are always a hit. They serve as a reminder of your skills, and an enticement to current and potential clients.
2. Edit it
The difference between an okay blog and an awesome blog is often just reading it over one more time. That’s true for all of us, even (especially!) professional writers. Ask me how many times this got edited… I might even tell you. It’s best if you can have a trusted friend or colleague read over what you wrote, but you can do it yourself, too.
Just keep these tricks in mind.
Kill your darlings
Coco Chanel once said “Before you leave the house, take a look in the mirror and take one thing off.” We use a similar rule in writing, except it’s called “kill your darlings”. That just means – don’t be afraid to make it shorter!
If your posts are under 500 words, you run the risk of producing “thin” content that Google doesn’t like. And as Alice Kirby of Lockhart Meyer reminds us, “Google is a dictator“. But beyond that, what matters is that you’ve said what you need to say and not wasted the reader’s time.
In his book On Writing, Stephen King suggested cutting 10% from your first draft. And if it’s good enough for Stephen King, then it’s good enough for us. When you’re reading your work again, keep an eye out for repetition and unnecessary sentences. With enough practice, you’ll spot it right away.
Everyone’s favourite task: checking for grammar. If grammar isn’t your strong suit, we recommend Grammarly. It’s a great (free!) tool you can install to catch those little grammar mistakes that plague us all.
When in doubt, shorten your sentences.
3. Distribute it
Finally, it’s time to get your baby out there. Share in on social media, using relevant hashtags and keywords to help people find your content. You never know who will find your material and benefit from it.
Use your email marketing list to update your clients regularly with your latest batch of blogs.
And if you want strangers to find your post, you’ll need to start thinking about SEO or Search Engine Optimisation. SEO is just what we call our attempts to improve an article’s ranking on search engines like Google. If you’re new to SEO, check out this blog for the basics.
Ready to dive in?
It’s a good idea to have a few blogs ready to go before you hit publish. That when way you’re ready to go public with your blog, you can publish three or four at once and it will look nicely populated.
Blog writing is just one of your many marketing activities. And although a blog is a natural step to take as you start working less in your business and more on it, it’s good to start slowly. Once a month is a doable goal to aim for when you’re starting out. As you find your groove and have more free time to work on it, you might decide to up the frequency of your posting.
I hope you’re feeling confident and excited to share your knowledge with your clients and with the world. Just remember, you’re a hard-working, successful business person. You’ve got a lot to share, so don’t be shy!