Do you show your salon’s offers and sale prices in red?

It’s a fairly typical colour for discounts yet many salon owners (understandably) shy away from using it. It’s often seen as a rather cheap and tacky route. A retail ploy more suited to supermarkets than hair and beauty salons.

Well, you’re missing a marketing trick. In a series of experiments scientists discovered that if you want to make your salon prices seem lower, without actually changing them, use the colour red.

There is one small catch – it only works for your male clients. And no, I’m not joking nor making sexist remarks. It’s absolutely true. Promise.

How to make salon offers appeal to men

I’m a big fan of neuromarketer Roger Dooley and his article outlining this study naturally caught my eye.

Roger quotes new scientific research in the UK and America which explored the link between pricing and colour. The study, “Are Men Seduced by Red? The Effect of Red Versus Black Prices on Price Perceptions”, reveals some startling findings which are very useful to salon owners.

Red offers and prices seduce

For men, the perceived savings when prices were printed in red were roughly twice as high as when the same price was printed in black. However, women were mostly unaffected by the colour of the price, as this graph from the study shows:

 

Are Men Seduced by Red? The Effect of Red Versus Black Prices on Price Perceptions

Copyright © 2013 New York University

The research showed that the effect was strongest when men were making impulse buys. So think retail offers by your reception desk and re-booking price incentives. In red.

Promote your salon offers in different ways

When marketing your salon offers:

  • Consider using red on any male-orientated offers or products. Even if the price remains the same by printing it in red you’re sending out a powerful signal to your male clients. Use a decent graphic or web designer to ensure you don’t look cheap and nasty.
  • Don’t restrict the ‘red-effect’ to printed materials only. Use red on website promotions and advertisements aimed at guys, your social media graphics and in salon (adverts in the men’s washroom perhaps?).
  • The good news for salon owners is that using red for prices won’t hurt the offer or promotion’s appeal to women, ensuring you can tempt your male clients without decreasing sales to your female ones.

This is yet another example of how men and women’s behaviour differs when it comes to retailing and services. As a hair or beauty business owner it’s well-worth understanding these divergent attitudes and exploiting them in your salon – try this blog post for some ideas on male and female loyalty and retention for your business