Caroline Hirons: 6 steps for online success
New, loyal clients are just a few clicks away, but if you haven’t boosted your business into the digital world, you could be missing out. Thanks to social media and flat-packed websites, it couldn’t be easier to shout about your business and make it a success. When it comes to vlogging, blogging and tweeting (oh my!), Caroline Hirons is the wizard of online!
Listen to your clients
Before Caroline Hirons launched her blog five years ago, she used Twitter to interact. But after constantly being asked the same question – “Why is my skin so bad?” – Caroline decided to start a blog. Are you frequently asked the same question? Maybe you find yourself recommending the same products? If so, congratulations! You’ve got your first content for a blog. Remember to keep your clients in the loop for any new blog posts.
Gap in the market
If you see yourself as a digital whizz and read a variety of blogs, next time you log on, ask yourself if you agree with all the advice you’re being offered. Before her blog launched, Caroline felt that Twitter wasn’t the best source of advice: “There was just too much misinformation on there,” she says. So if you notice any beauty issues, trends or news that are scarcely, or wrongly, being addressed, capitalise on this and position your blog as the place to find the answers.
It takes hard work and experience
Remember, blogging doesn’t require any particular qualifications; you just need to have a knowledge and passion for your field. Industry experience is the perfect base for your content, and as Caroline says: “The blog is simply a culmination of years and years of hard work.” From styling tools you can’t live without, to sharing inside knowledge on the best upcoming treatments, knowing what to write will become an easy process. Online success isn’t going to appear overnight, but committing to it will gradually gain rewards and recognition.
Stick to one platform
If the word ‘hashtag’ still means that weird button on the telephone, it’s probably better to ease yourself gently into social media. Caroline advises: “If you find it a struggle, stick to one platform and focus your energy on that.” Facebook is the best place to start, as most of your clients will be on this, and you can post salon updates as well as images with no filters or character limitations to slow the process. Once you’re a pro on Facebook, branch out onto another platform like Instagram, to show off your beautiful work and hook in new clients.
Find your niche
A jack of all trades, master of none is not what people look for in a blog. If you work in the hair industry, you’re better off focusing on one area, like colour trends or wedding styles, for example. You’ll gain more trust from online users, and they’ll know exactly what to expect from your posts. Passion is what drives Caroline in all parts of her beauty work, so find yours to deliver the highest-quality posts you can.
“It’s not about luck; it’s about seizing opportunities.” Caroline’s success has come from a pro-active approach to her blog. Treating your online presence as just as important as an in-store promotion will let you keep your eye on the ball for any extra opportunities. Your wedding make-up could catch the attention of lots of upcoming brides in your local area, or a tweet stating your current offers could be the dealbreaker for a client choosing between two salons. Read more of our interview with Caroline Hirons in the latest issue of PRO Hair & Beauty, out now!