We are always looking for new ways to improve our clients’ businesses and websites. We’re also looking for ways to make your blog or your website work for you, integrate with your business and not just be a separate entity that sits around, waiting for people to visit… maybe… someday. We want them to visit you NOW and a blog, RSS feed and even a newsletter are great ways to get people to visit your business website again and again.
When Kathy was in town recently, we visited one of my favorite local burger joints, Urban Mo’s (mind the music!). Urban Mo’s (formerly Hamburger Mary’s) is a very popular bar & grill in the heart of the gayborhood. They have fantastic burgers, fun service and various events or “nights” for dancing, cocktailing and social goodness. And I love their breakfast/brunch on the weekends. Faaaaaabulous!
In addition to our great service by Taj, we received a slip at the end of our meal. Taj said if we enjoyed our experience and we would like to receive free offers from him, personally, in our inbox to leave our email address. Since I’m local, I did and promptly forgot about it. I figured I’d get some promo email for a club night or something, but really didn’t think more of it.
Lo and behold, a week later, I received an email from Taj offering me a free appetizer for the entire month of September. All I had to do was present the email to any server. He also directed me to his blog on Urban Mo’s community website, Mo’s Space (haha!). I think this is a brilliant way to use a blog to get butts in the seat. I could see many ways this sort of marketing could be useful. Sure, offering people stuff on a mailing list is nothing new, but there’s a modern twist that Mo’s has added — giving their waitstaff and bartenders blog space on the restaurant website. This lets them personally build a clientele, as well as makes them feel like more valued members of the company. It lets them have a voice, it lets them promote your company and it’s really how people connect these days.
Let’s say you own a spa (or a tattoo parlor or a nightclub or a…). Give each of your spa employees blog space on your company website. They can write about new products that are available, new services their clients might be interested in, show off their latest work, even about their own passions for what they do. All of these things gets your staff marketing *for you*. RSS feeds allow people to subscribe to your staff member’s blog so they can be kept abreast of new info, just as they would on any other blog they subscribe to, be it news or friends. And a blog allows staff members to update people about things *right now*, not when they eventually open their email or sift through their spam folder (where often HTML newsletters go to die).
Let your staff know to ask clients at the end of their service if they would like to be added to that staff member’s personal contact list. Providing a more intimate mailing list builds rapport, allows them to receive notices about services they would be interested in, and the stylist or esthetician or masseuse can offer the client discounts, samples, freebies or offers based on their needs. I’ve signed up for salon mailing lists and gotten emails about weaves and chemical peels when I was really interested in pedicure and nail services. This eliminates unwanted content and allows the client to feel like their personal stylist (or whomever) is treating them to something special.
It’s a new twist on an old standby… and I’m happy to see a local establishment embracing new marketing. Viva Mo’s!