As the name suggests, Salonist helps salons and spas to manage their entire operations online and offline.
From appointment booking and upselling to appointment management and automated customer messaging Salonist does it all for thousands of businesses worldwide. We spoke to Julia Ching, Salonist’s Marketing Manager, about the digitalization and subsequent growth of a traditional sector, the features most loved by users, and her own career in a SaaS company.
Hi Julia. Please introduce yourself and your professional background…
I am Julia Ching, Content Manager at Salonist, a Salon Management Software. I have been working with Salonist since 2017, initially, in a junior position, and in 2019, I got promoted. I completed my Master of Arts in English Language and Linguistics from NUS in 2015.
How would you describe Salonist to somebody who hasn’t heard of you before?
Salonist is a cloud-based Salon Software helping the beauty and wellness industry in administrative and operational tasks. It keeps a hold on appointments, inventory, employee performance and payroll, sales reports, customer’s payment and data, and more.
We know that running a successful business like a beauty salon or health clinic can be daunting and time-consuming. Salonist promises to simplify their management and administration tasks, so they can concentrate on serving customers and growing.
How did the idea for the Salonist come about?
In 2015, Salonist’s owner met his friend running a beauty business in Singapore having issues in managing the daily activities. Considering the pain points, he thought of building a solution with powerful features that not only removes burden from their shoulders, however, boosts ROI, and saves time.
What do you believe is the most powerful Salonist feature?
Though, all of the features are powerful. But, if we consider the queries of the global customers, multilocation accessibility and reminder system (for appointment or payments) are best.
I see over 10,000 Make-up Artists, Therapists & Spas use Salonist’s marketing nudges, such as coupons, SMS and loyal schemes. What difference do these make to their businesses?
It’s building services for customers that really takes into account their viewpoints that’s what makes Salonist different from others.
As far as it is about coupons are concerned, considering the conventional way of providing coupons to customers in the form of cards not only wastes the time, money, however, it is not assured if in future they will reap its benefits or not. Salonist, on the other hand, allows the salon owners to provide coupons to their customers via email or SMS.
The Salon owners do not need to print the cards again and again, and they do not need to get support from extra sources for promotion, however, this feature saves time and effort. The coupons provided by Salon owners can be redeemed at a defined set of time, letting the customer enjoy the services as per their convenience.
"It's building services for customers that really takes into account their viewpoints that's what makes Salonist different from others."Julia Ching, Salonist
How have you marketed Salonist to get users? What’s worked the best?
The Salonist team has used every potential marketing strategy to gain customers. This includes content marketing, running paid campaigns, and organic SEO. From my perspective, they’ve all worked extremely well, every strategy has delivered what we hoped and, collaboratively, each of them is necessary to reap success.
Is there anything that’s surprised you?
In response to customer’s requirements and requests, we have added new features such as gift cards and making the software multilingual.
On usual days, we get queries from our user’s regarding gifting services to their customer’s loved ones on special occasions, like birthdays and anniversaries. The gift card feature not only helps the customer by opening up another revenue stream but is a special way we can empower them to create moments of kindess. This surprised us!
The multilingual aspect of the software has increased the number of users, while making our software globally approachable.
What are the team’s future aspirations for Salonist?
Each business thinks to hold as many customers as they can, so, this is what we aspire for. However, we are planning to launch Branch reporting, 360° reporting, and more updates in the Salon application.
Do you have any advice for people wanting to build their own marketing tool?
Yes, it is important to think as a customer while creating and improving any marketnig tool. Indeed, business success is necessary, but it’s only possible when you prioritize customers and serve their interests. Otherwise you can end up losing relevance.
For example, using the marketing features, the salon owners can promote their services, offers, deals, etc. They can pursue marketing in the form of SMS and emails, sending notifications to their customers regarding upcoming appointments, pending payments, etc. not only saves them from no-shows, however, ensures regular cash flow.
Apart from Salonist, can you name 3 marketing tools you love?