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The hair and beauty industry is about to get a high-tech with the launch of Salon Finder, a New Zealand designed iPhone app for the Facebook generation.
The app, designed to give salon owners the ability to market and manage their own brand and customer promotions, is already available in Australia and a US release into a major American city is planned within the next six months.
Salon Finder co-creator Chris D’Aguiar-Sanders, who created the app together with wife and business partner Rachael, says that Salon Finder is a much-needed next step in the hair and beauty industry.
Salon Finder is accessible on iPad and iPod and works as a GPS locator to help people find local salons close by, or for visitors to look up salons before arriving at a new destination. Users can look up, rate and review salons, helping to spread the word while doing so.
A basic listing is free for business owners, which allows them to list their address, a brief description of the salon and services offered, and a photo. Owners who choose to invest in a premium listing can log in and run deals and promotions to potential new customers. Anyone who ‘favourites’ a salon will get new deals first, creating a ready-made loyalty database.
“The feedback we’ve been getting from Australia, the first country to receive Salon Finder, has been phenomenal. We are now operating in a fast-paced digital world and there’s a real need for hair, beauty, spa, nail and cosmetic salons to innovate so they can stay ahead of the game,” says D’Aguiar-Sanders
“Salon owners love how easy it is to set up their own deals on the app, you don’t even need an iPhone to do it! We think Kiwis will really embrace this technology – it is so simple to use, yet incredibly effective,” he says.
D’Aguiar-Sanders says Salon Finder is all about empowering salon owners so they can target and build lasting relationships with a market used to premium products.
“Salon Finder works like social media, but with many added features which gives the business owner a lot more control over how they manage their brand. There are a lot of daily deal websites out there, which may be a great fit for some people, but not necessarily for those who want to build a base of regular repeat customers. I think you’ll tend to find that people who use daily deal sites are more inclined to go where the cheapest deals are, rather than being loyal to one business.”
Chris and Rachael D’Aguiar-Sanders are veterans of the beauty industry. Dubbed the ‘Salon Saviours’, the couple has travelled the world coaching and mentoring salon owners in New Zealand, Australia, the UK and Ireland. Rachael has a background in beauty therapy and along with Chris, has run and sold a successful central Auckland salon. Together, they own three international companies catering exclusively to salon owners.
For more information, visit www.salonapps.co.nz.