Launch in 5, 4, 3, 2, 1…
These days, starting a business, more specifically a hair company is not challenging.
In fact, you can buy everything you need in a matter of hours to be up and running by the end of the week. The hard part comes into play when you have to sell the product, but a solid launch event will enable you to start your hair company off with a bang by giving your brand the exposure it needs to generate the sales you want!
Start-off with a Bang For your Buck!
The hair market is saturated. Finding new customers in this market can be tricky for a new brand to do.
The old formula of reaching out to the press and waiting for the articles to roll in on opening day no longer works. What you have to do is incentivize the media both traditional journalists and new bloggers along with the people to want to buy your product.
You do that by making it look like everyone else who needs it, already has it.
A Launch Party $$$
Launch parties are a great idea when starting your new hair company because you can get press, influencers, and your customers all into one room.
All of those people together can generate more buzz to potential customers. A launch party is something that you should throw if you are ready to invest a significant amount of money into your business outside of what you have spent on product and point of sale tactics.
If you are going to make the investment, it is essential that you also have a large enough audience to fill the venue of choice.
Venues are costly but if you can team up with a local cafe or small restaurant that is just opening you may be able to strike a deal with them. If you can convince them that you have the same target customer, they may be willing to team up and co-sponsor your event. Do this by explaining your hair company’s target customer.
The guest list is another fundamental aspect of the launch party that you should invest in. Make sure your invite the writer for the local business section of your town’s paper, two to three local bloggers with a sizable following, a local beauty influencer, and potential clients to fill your venue to a comfortable capacity.
Last, but not least, your potential customers; they guests should be treated like royalty as soon as they come in. Be sure to capture their email information to follow up with them after the event, hand them free swag bags with some branded promotional material that you have invested in, and incorporate a type of raffle for these guests.
There is nothing better than free giveaways at a launch party!
Soft Opening $$
“Nobody gets anything perfect the first time.”
There are two ways that you can approach the method of a soft opening.
Both ways work because the purpose of a soft opening is to get your into the swing of your hair business and let your customers know that you are coming. A soft opening does not require as big a budget as a party, but it does need some flexibility in spending because you are still planning to make a significant investment in a product.
But you are not allowing your customers to have access to purchasing all of it at one time. Anytime you have inventory just sitting there that is a risk.
However, the reward for a slow rollout is preparation, so it is a sound launch technique for your business.
Method #1 The Slow Roll Out
Sometimes it is not always beneficial to contact an influencer, purchase social media ads, or invest in a radio commercial or billboard to help you advertise your product.
This is because you do not know how your target audience is going to react. If you are not in a place to fully deliver their orders to them because you chose the wholesale option and you are a one-person show, or you did not research how to place orders via your dropship website then a rush of orders may hurt you more than it helps you.
A slow rollout will enable you to work the kinks out of your shipping system and allow you to get feedback from a few customers on how to better their experience with you.
To start your hair company using a slow rollout, you should choose one method of advertising that will let your customers know you are there, but not overload you with a response that you cannot handle; a social media advertisement should do the trick.
It is essential that during this slow roll out you are advertising other types of hair coming to the site for future purchase. Be sure to answer questions about the Brazilian hair in regards to care and maintenance and hone in on proper customer service techniques that you plan on carrying out for the life of your company.
Customer service of this nature is critical because it will get your customers back to your site to purchase the lower grade hair.
Method #2 Friends and Family Access
Remember, a soft opening is used to help you with exposure and efficiency.
Another method that you can use to execute both of these needs would be to offer a sneak peek into your hair company website for the people closest to you! One week before you fully launch the marketing campaign for your site try letting friends and family order from your site.
You can offer the full assortment, but having these people as your first customers will help you work any kinks out of the process.
After that week, gauge your performance and adjust or start the campaign to open your site to new customers.
Grand Opening Sale $
The “Grand Opening Sale” is a guaranteed way to impress customers when you first launch your site.
It is also a great way to attract them to visit your website. We only quantify it as needing a small amount of investment because you do not need to put everything on sale for it to work. You can select a small portion of your inventory, like your top two popular styles to discount.
Here is where you would run the numbers on what products you can afford to discount heavily, then leave everything else at full price so that your grand opening revenue does not result in a loss.
The most important part of the grand opening sale is making sure that your customers know that there is a sale. Use big fonts to advertise the percentages that you have off.
Make sure your important sale words are in obnoxious colors like red and yellow to capture the customer’s attention.
During your grand opening sale, you should be working to capture emails to follow up with these customers and send them future promotions as your company grows. One way to do this successfully would be to create a membership. You can incentivize them to leave their emails by offering them a 2% – 5% discount or free shipping off of their next purchase.
An incentive like this will also get them to come back.
Mix And Match Launch Strategies According To Your Budget
Regardless of the investment size, we are in a day and age where your budget should not hinder your launch efforts.
If you cannot afford a launch party for your hair company due to the venue, food, DJ, and free giveaways that you would have to sponsor that is understandable. You can instead do a soft open for a select group of customers and offer limited products or the full line of your assortment via your salon or website.
If you cannot afford a launch party or a soft opening, then you should work on your process efficiency and get your business as close to ready as possible. Once you have your processes down pact commence with a grand opening sale to exposes your target audience to a slew of deals and discounts.
A solid launch equates to exposure and future sales so it is not something you can sacrifice. You do not want to wing it where it counts, and your business deserves the investment of careful planning and a good start.
How have your launched your companies in the past? Comment below on what you would have done differently to get your business off to a strong start.