UK retailer, John Lewis saw half-year profits almost double in 2015. A soaring growth that would bring a beaming smile to most salon owners faces. And their bank accounts.

So how do they do it and what marketing lessons can your hair or beauty business learn from this respected retailer?

I guess you’re thinking your salon business can have little in common with this multi-million pound company.

Read on.

 

Great service underpins growth

John Lewis is famed for its legendary customer service. When surveyed, 86% of customers said they felt valued when they shop at its stores.

So how does this retail giant go about making so many of its customers feel valued and appreciated?

John Lewis are known for their cutting edge TV and digital campaigns, yet when interviewed recently Andrew Murphy, their Retail Director, admitted, “We think about customer service in a fairly old world way. We try and focus on the things that must be true, that underpin great customer experience.

So in spite of all the marketing pounds they lavish on the latest digital promotional technologies John Lewis still understand the huge significance of good old-fashioned customer service in driving turnover and profit growth.

 

Increase business and loyalty with goodwill gestures

The retailer goes above and beyond for its customers.

Andrew Murphy talked about taking a hit even when it wasn’t their fault. “You have to be prepared to leave some money on the table. For John Lewis in a retail context that means acknowledging acts of god, in other words, sometimes stuff just happens.”

“Acts of god” that’s a fresh way of looking at the stuff that happens in business. Murphy explained that such is John Lewis’ reputation for exceptional customer care that customers look to them to fix any issues. He gave the example of a TV that breaks whilst being delivered. Although it is not strictly John Lewis’ fault they take the rap and put it right for their customer.

He estimated John Lewis spend some £8 million a year on such goodwill gestures for “acts of god”, explaining that while £8m figure may seem high, it’s just a “fraction” of the retailer’s marketing budget and an investment worth making to ensure customers are kept happy.

The salon marketing lesson: if you want to grow your salon you need to take a hit on occasions to keep a loyal client happy.

Even if it isn’t your fault.

Your team need to understand they are empowered not just to go that extra mile, but an extra couple of miles if needed.

 

Marketing messages put customers first

Not only does this attitude to customer care go right through the whole organisation, John Lewis builds it into its brand philosophy and reflects in its marketing materials.

Look on their website, e-newsletters, social media and media advertising and the customer care message comes over loud and clear. Their marketing includes two-year product warranties and the famous “Never knowingly undersold” price promise.

Everything is geared to making the customer feel valued. To making the customer trust the John Lewis promise.

And it works. Not only for the customers who flock back but for the profits which continue to grow.

 

Grow your hair and beauty business

Take a leaf out of their marketing book if you want to boost profits in your spa, salon or clinic.

4 marketing questions to get you started:

If it works for John Lewis then it can grow your salon business too. Give it a go.