How to take your salon ‘live’ on social media

Live video and salons: what you need to know
Rosie Ward
Rosie Ward
Marketing at Timely
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You might have noticed your business posts on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter haven’t been getting as many likes and comments as they used to. We knew that pay to play was coming on social media, and it’s finally arrived. Lucky for us all, there are some new apps and features available that you can still use for free!

A lot of people think of social media as the go-to for free marketing, but that landscape is changing.

Pre-made video

Modern marketing is all about video. Video is forecast to account for approximately 70% of all online consumer traffic this year, Until recently, this was done with intro and case study videos posted on YouTube or Vine, then shared on social media platforms and websites. The main aim was (and still is!) to get your brand in front of as many potential customers as possible.

The trick is to put yourself in the places where they are looking. And if you haven’t noticed already, Facebook feeds are are getting pretty crowded.

A way to  tell what the next big thing in marketing and technology will be is by watching where the money goes. What are the big players investing in?

Live video

We saw what happened when Reddit was acquired, then came Snapchat (check out the amazing story of the guy who developed the facial recognition filter), and now there’s Periscope, bought by Twitter for $86 million. What all that money means is that surfers of the internet want real-time, live video, and the people with the money are making sure they’re in on it.

For hair, beauty and fitness professionals, live video is a fantastic way to engage with your followers and get new clients. People love the behind-the-scenes feel of live video, especially in such visual, hands-on fields like hair and beauty.

Here are the current top ways to go live. Which one is right for your business?

Periscope

Twitter’s live video feature. You can stream live and see how many people are watching, check out their reactions, and answer their questions. Once you’re done, the video is saved to your profile unless you disable it. This is a great option if you know a lot of your clients (and potential future clients!) are on Twitter. Also, it’s really user-friendly and easy to learn!

Facebook Live

It’s pretty similar to Periscope in that you can see how many people have tuned in and check out their reactions/comments as you stream. Research done by Facebook shows that people comment on Live videos 10x more than on regular videos, watch Live videos for 3x longer.

The analytics on Facebook Live are really detailed, which is super helpful for a business owner. You can see which bits of your stream got the best reactions and highest engagement.

If you know your clients are on Facebook, Facebook Live is a no-brainer.

Instagram Stories

Instagram Stories is similar to Snapchat’s My Story in a lot of ways: it’s live, the videos disappear after 24 hours, and people can’t comment or like it the way they can with Periscope or Facebook Live. You also have more control over the privacy settings.

This is a great option for people in the hair, beauty, fitness and wellness industries, since people who follow those kinds of businesses are likely already on Instagram. And if you use Instagram already, it’s a breeze to learn and you don’t have to build up a new following.

Snapchat

The original live video app. Snapchat started out as a weird, self-deleting video app that parents worried about and teens loved, and it’s exploded into the mainstream and into businesses. In April of 2016, over 100 million users were watching 10 billion videos a day on the app!

Turn the engagement into bookings

Once you’ve captured the attention of your target market by going live, combine this with one of Forbes’ top trends for 2016, a buy now button (or a book now button), and you are back to getting bookings for free from social media! This is a pretty common formula for social media: Live Video = More Engagement. More Engagement = More Awareness. More Awareness = More Clients. Live video is free and usually pretty fun, so give it a shot and see which one works best for you!

For more insight on social media trends and how to use them in your business, check out our free Salon Trends 2019 ebook.

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