Ever watched Luke Cage? It’s a good show, all the episodes are on Netflix so you should check it out. One of the main scenes is a barber shop called “Pop’s Barbers”. Without revealing too much (you know, because of spoilers and all), the barber shop is used as a hub for the community to come together. It doesn’t matter whether you’re good, bad, ugly, or beautiful, your past doesn’t even matter, Pop’s is open to everyone (there’s also a swear jar for anyone who says a naughty word). The characters in the series say it’s like “Switzerland”.
This is quite true to real life. I remember (when I had hair) going to my barbershop in Tottenham to get my haircut. I didn’t know the barbers by name, but the shop was always bustling with conversations about football, music, or politics. Looking back on this, it got me thinking, “how would I help promote a barbershop?”.
Stream your conversations on Facebook live
The conversations are always heated. Insults are thrown, shouting between barber and customer takes place, there’s also plenty of laughter. It’s pretty insane, but it’s all fun and there’s no ill intention behind this. I think it’s a waste not to share these moments on social media. On the busiest day, when you know the loudest customers come in, set up a webcam or phone, and start streaming the conversations online for people to see. It’ll be extremely entertaining and will help build up a fan base online as well.
Save your streams and upload to Youtube
Hire a freelance editor and give them the footage from the previous stream. They’ll be able to grab the best bits and create a clean version that can be uploaded to Youtube as an episode. If you’re feeling ambitious, record the entire day so that you have a variety of content to play with, not just the loud exchange of words, but also the calm ones. Let people know what it’s like to work there. Add some subtitles and a couple of narrations, and it’ll be like a reality series on Youtube.
Create a Pinterest board for haircuts
Is a customer looking for inspiration? Why not create a Pinterest board with different types of styles to choose from. It could be from the whacky to the stylish. The good thing about Pinterest is that the search function allows you to find some very specific results. Let’s say you’re looking for inspiration for “bald” and “bearded” men, it’ll filter results to show you just that! It’ll even give you suggestions to refine your search even further.
All you’ve just read is the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the opportunities available for small businesses such as this. You’ll obviously have to monitor the type of conversations going on, but if you’re smart about it, you’ll become more than just a barber shop as you’ll be giving the same experience to the online community as the customers sitting in your chair.