The Sugar Show

The Beauty Professionals Guide to Dominating the Digital Realm with Grant Kantios

October 22, 2023 Shannon "The SugarMama" Episode 83
The Sugar Show
The Beauty Professionals Guide to Dominating the Digital Realm with Grant Kantios
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Are you ready to unlock the secrets of making your beauty business thrive in the digital world? With the knowledge shared by our expert guest, Grant Kantios from Go Happy Beauty, you'll learn to navigate through SEO complexities, create an engaging website, manage reviews effectively, and understand the power of a robust Google Business profile.

This episode is a goldmine for beauty professionals, filled with invaluable advice to help your business stand out online. We deep-dive into the world of SEO, with Grant simplifying it into a language we can all understand. We discuss the significance of crafting a website that best represents you and your business, and how to leverage Google's algorithms to enhance your visibility. Dive deeper into the importance of a detailed Google Business profile and learn how periodic updates can lead to immense success.

Ultimately, the key to success in the digital realm is reviews. Learn from Grant why it's essential to read and respond to every review, be it positive or negative. We explore the potential repercussions of neglecting customer feedback and share useful tips on leveraging positive reviews for business growth. Are you wondering about the role of local partnerships in business growth? We got you covered! Learn how partnering with local spray tanners can expand your reach in the beauty industry. This episode is truly packed with insights to help you flourish in the digital world, no matter where you are in your beauty professional journey.

Interested in creating your own website? Start HERE

Follow Happy Tans on Instagram!

If you’ve connected with or been inspired by this episode in any way, leave us a review and let us know your biggest takeaway - I’d love to hear how you embrace Sugaring For All!! And while you've got your phone out, make sure to follow us on Instagram @Love2Sugar.

If you are interested in learning more about Radeq Lab's Premium Prebiotic Sugar Line of products, you can find them at www.radeqlab.us.

Cheers to your Sweet Success!

Speaker 1:

Welcome to this Sugar Show. I'm Shannon O'Brien, body sugaring expert and licensed esthetician, who's taken my own skincare business from zero to multiple six figures and has helped over 3,000 students learn how to do the same. Now let me tell you it wasn't all that long ago that I lacked the time, budget and knowledge needed to grow my small business as a body sugaring pro. If we were to press Rewind, you'd see the many failed attempts and lessons learned that have helped me build the profitable business that I have today, one that runs on its own and gives me the lifestyle and freedom that I only used to dream of. I created the Sugar Show to hand you my secrets and give you the simple, step-by-step strategies to help you do the same. So if you're a cosmetologist or esthetician or wax professional who's looking to fill your books, make more money in your business and enjoy greater balance between your work and home life, you are in the right place. Let's dive in. Ladies and gentlemen, sugar Pros, estes and Cosmos. It's Shannon from the Sugar Show I am. I always say I'm thrilled to meet with guests, and I don't know that I'm as much thrilled as I'm jazzed because I just dig hanging out with Grant Conscious from Go Happy Beauty. He's one of the most laid-back guys in our industry and probably one of the most crucial, because he just knows what we need to do the job and has built software and programs to help make that happen. So I know that you have listened to him. In episode 75, I believe it was about what he does and really you'd need to check a look at the show notes and really spend time going through what it is that his company does. There's so much to talk about, but in this episode we're not going to talk sales or why you should use his software. We're going to talk specifically about whether or not in this day and age, you even need a website, whether you should just go with a free website and what the benefits are of that or not. We're going to talk about SEO, search engine optimization and a lot of this stuff sounds like tech. I don't want to listen to this on my walk with my dog. I don't want to listen to this on the treadmill, but really we have a great conversation about the reality check on what you need to do to get your business seen, especially locally. The goal is to get bodies on the table to be doing facials on to be sugaring on, and if you are not doing these few things in this episode, then it is highly likely that you will not be standing out like your I hate to call it competition, like the other businesses in your area will say. Really, the idea is to do the things that will get you the most bang for your buck. As he talks about here, what will move the needle? Because, my friends, this time of inflation and the recession whether or not you believe then that the gas price is expensive, the election coming up, everything seems like a reason for why you're not doing well, but, in all honesty, we're not marketing well enough. We're not doing the things that need to get your information pushed into the hands of potential clients and current clients to know what else you do. So we're going to talk about SEO. We're going to talk about the advice that he would give you if you're like all right, I got to kind of get my stuff together. We're going to talk about reviews how to use the good ones, how to deal with the bad ones, with how to even get reviews and what to do with them when you get them, because it's not just like, oh gosh, I got a five-star review, yay me. You got to do something with it in order to use it for spreading the word. So I know that you'll be jazzed after you listen to this episode. In fact, you're definitely going to want to go to the show notes because, especially if you're walking on the treadmill or with your dog or doing something else while you're listening to a podcast which is usually what we do you will realize that there's a whole lot of wisdom in here, and I even took notes throughout our chat together. So, ladies and gentlemen, I introduce you, or reintroduce you, to Grant from Go Happy Beauty. Okay, grant, happy Beauty. Grant, are you ready to dazzle them with your techie skills?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I'm ready. I'm ready, I think so. Yeah, let's do it Okay.

Speaker 1:

So I've already introduced you to everyone and I just I freaking love hanging out with you, but let's talk tech for beauty people. Sure, let's talk about, like what we actually need, what we really don't need to worry about, like how to handle stuff with tech, and I've whipped up some questions for you that have been burning in our audience's brain, and so we're just going to make this super easy so that people that are walking their dog Life is super easy, life is super easy. Listening to our podcast on the treadmill, you know, at the gym can like really just take some like really solid golden nuggets about SEO and websites and reviews and how the heck to do all this. So let's get down to it. So, as it relates to beauty professionals, actually to the world, what is SEO and how does it work? What the heck is this?

Speaker 2:

How do we dispel this? You know search engine optimization sounds so technical. No, I tell everybody, look, it's basically the process of of, you know, ranking higher or being more visible for the terms and searches you want to be visible for, right. So, depending on what specific markets you're in whether you're sugaring or tanning or waxing or whatever, it is right you want to come up with, somebody searches for you in that area, in your local area, right? So essentially, you want to find out how to increase your visibility and there's obviously Google's algorithm is famous for, or infamous, whatever you want to say, for having over 200 ranking factors and all these things to confuse people. But at the end of the day, you need to be the best result for whatever that query is. You know somebody searching for the best. You know sugaring pro near them and they should come up for that. They want to come up for it, right. So what do they need? They need a website that can be found. Obviously, you know Google business profile that can be found and probably has the most reviews if you want to be known as the best, right, quote, unquote best person for that. So you know there's a lot to it, obviously, behind the scenes to get those things to come up. But essentially, you know SEO is being visible for what you want to be visible for, whatever those, whether you offer one service or 10 services. You want to be visible for all those different things Depending on the situation, depending on what they're trying to rank for. You know that'll be a little different, but we want to make sure that you're visible for those terms. You know somebody searching for you locally. You want to come up first.

Speaker 1:

Right, okay, easier said than done. That sounds all great, but how does an esthetician, cosmetologist, sugar pro extraordinaire? How do you easily get that accomplished? How do you easily like? Where do you put the SEOs? I know that's not what it is, it's just fun to say.

Speaker 2:

No, I know it is. Yeah, we always get that. I mean for the, for the website itself. I mean I started the website because it's kind of the foundational piece, right. I mean, obviously, as time has changed, google's algorithm has adjusted. I think the Google business profile on the website kind of are neck and neck because they're obviously always favoring their properties and they obviously own the Google business page. So you have to think about that. But for the website itself, most people you know what we see is we obviously do websites, so we optimize it out of the box for people. We've done the research, we just implement that for them. If you're doing it yourself, you need to make sure that those things are visible. A lot of people are missing content on their site. They're not mentioning anything about what they do. They just say we're the best, we're going to make you feel beautiful. Like what does that mean? What do you do? What do you offer? You know, one thing we like to say is, when somebody comes to a site, you should be able to answer three questions what do you have to offer, How's it going to make my life better and how do I get it Right? Those three things should be answered almost instantaneously. Most people miss out on that. But aside from the content itself, you know, if you want to get more technical, the title of the page. You know. If you're looking at SEO, regardless of your using our system or Wix or Squarespace, the title of the page has a lot to do with what that page, how Google understands what that page is about. So a lot of people miss out on that. If I go to sites that people have made, usually when they go to the homepage it says home and then their business name. You know they're missing out on the opportunity to say sugaring in whatever that city is, or waxing in whatever that sugar you know, and spray tanning in whatever that city is. So those are kind of high or I'd say low hanging fruit that a lot of people are missing out on. You know if they're building a site they don't have those things implemented. We know immediately we could change this to make it better.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, really, it's about the back end right and making sure that you're not so worried about you know, it's sure it's pretty colors and all that, but what are you actually saying? Yeah, I hear that they that like it's just different than it was before, like now, like the, the algorithms can actually like understand what videos are saying, like what words you're saying in videos and like the words on your page, like it scrolls your whole page right or not, just all like in addition to the title. So it's really important what you put on the page.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, absolutely yeah, because a lot of people, obviously being in the beauty industry, they want big images, they want less text. But you know, time after time they do studies and Google's constantly ranking the sites that have more and better content on them. Now there's strategic ways you can add the text to the pages to make sure it still looks good, but it still needs to understand what it's about. And I was having a conversation with somebody the other day and they have, you know, full service spots. They said what we did? You know we wanted to be at the top for this first service, right, so they wrote a page about that. And then you know a litany of blogs on that one specific service. Google's going to associate them with that service and they're going to be come up first in their area because Google's like they're a subject, basically a subject matter expert for that thing. And then you kind of move down the you know, go through the services, add more pages, more content, but at the end of the day, google wants to find that information somewhere. So if you have it on your site, you're going to benefit from it.

Speaker 1:

So okay, so let's talk about that for a minute. That's probably fascinating, because if you think about an esthetician that sugars and they're trying to set themselves apart in their area, say they do facials and they do sugaring, if you think about it, everyone's talking about facials, right? So, you can put facials on your website. Obviously you wanna let people know what you're doing, but wouldn't it benefit you to beef up your sugaring? Because when people are looking for that, right, you would be the one that comes up. You're probably the only one in your area that does it anyway right now. But like you really wanna beef up, like write blogs about sugaring. You know, like, for those of you that are listening, I talk about sugaring all day long. Listen to what I say and turn it into a blog. You know, like, take that topic and turn it into a blog, right and so, and nowadays, those websites they like come with, like, the ability to blog, usually in the software, right.

Speaker 2:

Is that what you? do yeah, absolutely. We build that. You know and you can do it. You can use whatever you need to generate those blogs. A lot of people are overwhelmed but if you wanna be the go-to person, like, sugaring is kind of very similar to where we we kind of made our roots and spray tanning, right, it was like not as much competition. So people we've been working with for years have been at the top and they're still reaping those benefits now. Now there's more competition. So if you're starting fresh, obviously there's more challenges. But if you dedicate yourself, if you're the go-to person, google's gonna associate that with you, right? So, thinking on you know the topic of sugaring, you could create the service page and then think about people don't know what to blog about, right? Think about the top questions you get from potential clients, and each one of those is a blog in and of itself in addition to adding them to the FAQs on your sugaring page, you can elaborate on them in blogs. If you're not a great writer, go hire it out at Fiverr, speak it into a mic, go to these, you know, I think-.

Speaker 1:

ChatGPT.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, chatgpt Revcom will take it and translate, transcribe I think it's a dollar per minute into actual texts and they'll make sure it's good grammar and everything for like a dollar per minute. It's like there's really no excuse not to do it anymore. So you know, and I've done that before you don't have time to write it Literally, you speak it into audio, send it in and it translates it. There's probably free services on it, honestly, for that now. But if you wanna be the expert, the go-to person, you need to make sure that you are. They're good, like you might know in your head that you're the go-to person, but does Google know? If not, then you need to make sure you are.

Speaker 1:

Okay, some of our students and audience are like, oh shoot, do I have to have a Google business profile? I think I heard about that back in the day, but how do we even do that, like without diving into super Google? But like, where do you someone go to make sure like to start to have a Google business profile, cause we'll talk about websites next. But like, where do you start with, like, the Google business profile? Cause that's super important. People are Googling. You have to have a Google profile.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, yeah, I mean. Go to Google, type in Google my business is. You know the Google business profile. Now go there, type it in, it'll come up. You hit start now. It's a pretty quick process of setting it up. I'm assuming most people are working at a physical location. If, for some reason, you're got a home studio, you don't want to display that address, or maybe you're mobile. We have mobile tanners. Make sure you say that you service your clients at their location, then it'll actually hide your address. So a lot of people hesitate, at least in the tanning world, because they're mobile and they don't want to put out their actual address. You just say I service them at their location, then you're a mobile business. But you set it up. They send a postcard typically. Sometimes it'll automatically verify, but most times it sends a postcard to the address you put in that code, your profile is set up.

Speaker 1:

Gotcha okay and then so it's really important to have a website. I see a lot of people who just get the free website template.

Speaker 2:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

You know, like let's talk about the free website Like where would you go to get your website done? Well, I mean, that's what we expect, and free websites even work like it's easy to fill in the blanks. But does that even work?

Speaker 2:

Well, it depends. We obviously specialize in that. You know what was happy tans? I'll go happy beauty for sure. But with the free websites, let's say you go to something like a Wix, they're not gonna give you. If you're doing the free level at my last time I checked, at least you're gonna get. You're not gonna get your own domain, so you're gonna have something something somethingwixsitecom, right. So first, that's not professional. Second, it's not gonna rank on Google very it'll be very challenging to rank, just the way that it works without getting too technical. So, free website people are typically taking a template. They're changing out images, changing out text and then they roll with it. I think there's limitations there because there's so much that goes on behind the scenes, as we talked about the title and all this stuff, right, that's one of the beauties of what we do is we actually do all that for you. So I'll have to say, second guess it or think about it. But you know you're going in there using the free template. You're probably changing out pictures and words where you can, because it's set up as a template. You don't know how to move things around and then you're pushing it out as it is and again, it's not gonna be optimized unless you've done the research and implemented it and you're gonna have some limitations there, because that template was probably not set up for sugaring in this case. Right, it's set up for some other random beauty service. So you know, if nothing else, at least do the free site. But that would be the bare minimum. I would say it's better than no site at all, but not much better.

Speaker 1:

Right, right. So nowadays there's a lot of especially younger estheticians. I say that because I'm a seasoned, older gal. There's a lot of younger gals that are like I don't wanna bother with website, I'm just gonna make like a link. I'm big into Instagram, I'm gonna use Linktree or linkinbio and just send people to you know, to book with me. Why is that not smart to just rely on a social media platform, even if it's Facebook, with a book now button, and not have an actual website?

Speaker 2:

You know there's a lot of things to be said. Obviously, there's been times where those systems have gone down and you're offline. Right, it's out of your control. That's one thing I mean. The biggest thing is you don't own that content they do. So you have to consider that. The website is a you know, we tell everybody this. It's the hub for everything you do, whether it's online or offline marketing. Your website address is there and people are gonna just be like I'm here and people are gonna see that and it's visible. It's a lot easier to put you know happytanscom than it is to put linktree you know forward, slash back, slash all this and people can find that. And then on the website, you can control the narrative. You can set it up how you want. They can navigate how they want and you set yourself apart. You're more credible. You look different. You're not the same as everybody's Instagram profile. Whether it's more aesthetically pleasing, it still looks the same. It's still this grid of images. And then you know you mentioned, like a link tree, the thing where you put the bios in there. I tell everybody you should just build that, you know, into your site. It's easy to do. You should have that at your driving traffic than, rather than to a link tree address. You're driving it to your actual website, which helps, and then you obviously have them on your website and at that point you can do what you wish. You can have a popup come up. They get some on your email list. You can have all the relevant links you want. You can send them to another page after they click something. Whatever you wanna do, right, it's kind of open to you. But at that point again, you're controlling what happens, versus using these third party services, where there's some limitations there.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, oh, there's so much to know and so much to do. I know, I mean really, at the end of the day, it's. It's that website is your house and no matter what the latest thing is to drive them to your house TikTok, instagram, whatever the next thing is like the house is what you have to have, tight, right, and so you have to have all the keywords that you want people to find you for. You know your pictures not like you know pictures of you and your cat. Like you know, like pictures of you doing what you do and being the master. You know, it's never been easier to do a blog post with search engine optimized keywords that will you got to gain, play the game here, right, like it's not just oh, I'm not a good writer, it's hey, use a tool that will say sugaring, hair removal, body sugaring, brazilians like, we'll use these keywords. So explain really quick this is probably like the craziest question you've probably heard. Well, maybe not crazy, but explain in basic form what an algorithm actually is. Sure, because I'm sure a lot of beauty people are like aha, the algorithm, and it's just this like nebulous thing. Like what is an algorithm as it relates to all of this data?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I mean it's a way for, for instance, in Google's case, to make sense of whatever people, whatever that query is right. So they're using all these things in the background to check what somebody types in and to return the best solution you know for that query. So it's their way to take, you know, an ungodly amount of data and process it very quickly and then return that to you. So I think you know a lot of people get caught in that, whether it's an Instagram algorithm, a TikTok algorithm, a Google algorithm. But you just really have to know what works. You know and dispel all the other things and we tell people this. When I do presentations on SEO, it's like we're focused on that. You know the Pareto's principle. What's the 20% that's going to move the needle? 80% of the way, we're not worried about all these other little things that could possibly help, but they're not really going to move the needle. We just want to set people up for success and focus on those few things that make the biggest difference in their business, because we know time is limited, so we want to make sure we can leverage that and utilize it as best we can. Sure, sure.

Speaker 1:

What are you seeing right now as of this recording is like really the social platform that's really working for local marketing? Because I really think that sometimes estheticians feel like they got to be on all the platforms and sometimes what that does is it doesn't hit your local audience. It's just like, oh, dancing on TikTok, showing sugar, you know talking about, you know like lip syncing to whatever that kind of goes to this national audience. And if we're going to be smart with our time, how do we really hone in on the local audience without spending all this time dancing to the latest social media? Like, what platform are you finding is really like moving the needle best for local esthetician?

Speaker 2:

marketing Like Google business, for sure. Google, my business, 100%. I mean most people don't think of it. As you know, it's not probably mentioned the same breath as a social media profile like an Instagram, facebook or TikTok. But for local business, for people actually seeking out the service, you want to be found right and people are investing all this energy on an Instagram, a TikTok in the hope that somebody that's searching for a sugaring pro in their area is going to look for them. Wow, the people that are actually seeking the service are on Google searching it out, and you're not there, so you know. And on Google business, you can update photos, post updates, all these things. People aren't doing that and they help with relevancy and all that kind of stuff that Google is looking for and people aren't spending the time there.

Speaker 1:

Okay the audience. Stop for a minute on that treadmill. If you can write it down or put it in your notes, I want you to really really hear this have a website that makes sense. Spend the time You're going to spend thousands and thousands and thousands and thousands of dollars on a designer. Have a website that makes sense, meaning it has all the right words, all the right meat that you want people to know about you. Let it sell you. Don't kill yourself to be doing all the different. You know social media pieces. Start with a solid, rock star Google business profile. Fill it with really good pictures, really good reviews we're talking about reviews in a minute, but really good, like make sure that you're asking for reviews. Fill that up, because when people are Googling, guess what's going to pull up in the algorithm? The Google business information, right. Like that's the first place you want. If you're not a social media person and you just really don't love it. Start with those two things. Dial those things in and make sure they're right. Then you can go next to Instagram, probably for our world. Make sure your Instagram is tight. We'll do another podcast on that. Make sure your Instagram is tight. But your website, your Google business profile and your emails, and we're going to talk about that in another podcast because there's so much to talk about, but those are so, so important. So let's go back to reviews, because I know that there's a lot of people that if you go look up your Google business review or your Google business profile, you might not have any reviews because you haven't asked for them. You need to get more reviews. Your head is spinning because you're like great, now I got to do this. Like why? So? Do reviews actually help your local business? What your reputation with your friends and family that live elsewhere because you dance so great and lip sync so well? It's talking about getting butts on the table. I want to sugar butts.

Speaker 2:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

And who has and brows and all the things. No-transcript. Do reviews actually help that? Because back in the day it was like, oh, Yelp, oh, who cares about Yelp? I know let's talk about reviews and what actually helps. Put booties on the table.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, If you look at the studies they have outside of, the number one search factor as far as Google Business goes would be proximity. So the proximity to that person, your business is to that person when they're searching. That is one of those things. That's while it's in your control. It's not. You're probably signed to some three-year lease or whatever it is. So that is what it is. Outside of that, the reviews and, more importantly, the consistency of those reviews is very, very important, and that's where a lot of people miss out is consistently asking for them. Maybe you do an email blast once a month and ask for them, or once a quarter, maybe once a year, who knows you might get a handful, once and never. Once and never. Yeah, and you might get a handful of reviews at that time, but it's not consistent. So we see the people that are taking action. They've built it into their workflow, whether they're actually manually sending a text to their new clients at the end of every day, at the beginning of every day, whatever that looks like, or emailing and requesting it, but just simply making the ask on a consistent basis. And people are not going to do it all the time. We know that time is of the essence and people don't want to spend their time, but there's certain ways you can ask for it Let people know in your text or whatever. Hey, this takes about 20 or 30 seconds. Just leave us honest feedback and things like that. We sent out an email about this and we had some people get like 10 reviews in one day, just simply copy and pasting what we put in there. But it's like keep it simple but make the ask. Most people are not doing that and the reviews are huge. You can read a bunch of studies, but about somewhere around 80% to 85% of people choose a local business based solely on their reviews. So it's one of those at the end of the day, if nothing else, if they find you on Instagram or find your website. It's kind of a fact check how good are these people? They have 100 something reviews. Obviously, that's pretty good, so that's a good way to kind of cross verify that for them.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, you really got to make sure you stand out and there's going to be more and more people that sugar because we're training all of them. And they're going to be coming to your town and we want to make sure, and if they're moving to a new town, they're going to want to see do these people even have reviews? They're dropping their clothes for you, whether they're spray tanning with your audience, or they're getting sugared or even getting facials. They're dropping their clothes for you. They want to hear some reviews on whether or not you're any good, exactly so. Ok, so what you're saying, then is so those of you that have a Google Business profile, you double checked? Oh yeah, I should probably update my photos, because those are from five years ago. Right, like that's my old furniture or my old setup or my old colors or whatever? Update your stuff. But I would venture to guess, if we're real, a lot of people got all excited about Google Business Profile. They asked all their friends to send a review, and then you forgot about it, and that was four years ago, five years ago, and so now you have five star reviews, but they were from a really long time ago. You're saying those kind of die on the vine. They need to be fresh all the time.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, yeah, if you're looking for relevancy, google uses all these factors to build that algorithm, but that's one of them is how consistent are you with getting those reviews? If you, I'd rather get one a week for the whole year than get 50 in one day. It's going to pay much more dividends long term for you, ok so Google likes that better.

Speaker 1:

Oh, yeah, yeah. Obviously we want lots of amazing reviews, but Google actually there's a method behind the madness, right? This isn't touting. Oh, look at me how wonderful I am to get five stars. This is we need consistent people coming in and saying we love her, we love them, we love it, we love sugar, blah, blah, blah, blah.

Speaker 2:

Ok, yeah so if you build that into your workflow, it's important. And to think of it from maybe it was about a year ago. About this time last year, I feel like it was like, hey, google's hiding all these reviews, what's going on? But it's Google's way to fight it. I've been on the other side of that, where we're getting one star reviews from Donald Duck and it's obvious that they're fake, but it's not against Google's terms of service. They can't remove it, whatever that looks like. So Google's kind of built this in to try to figure out how do we do this and hide the ones that we're not sure about. But if they're getting 50 new reviews in one day, it's like a red flag. Like, hey, something's not right and Google has a lot more understanding than we know of. Like this is a certain type of business. They could probably serve a number of clients in a day. It's not unusual to get two reviews in one day, because they understand that you're a beauty business and people come through the door. They understand the difference between that and a contractor. They're not going to build five houses in a day. So it's like they have a very deep, rude understanding. Like has this person, this Gmail account, ever left a review before? How long ago was it? Are they friends with this person? They know all that stuff and it's pretty crazy to think about, but the consistent ask is the most important thing there.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, yeah. Ok, so we see our reviews up there. Like you said, some are fake, some are your friends. Google understands if they're your friends. How I'm gonna start with a negative. How do we handle a negative review Cause? those are really hard to read. Now let me tell you, sugar Pros, I have two thoughts on the negative review. Before you answer this, grant, the first thing is really look at that negative review and ask yourself are they probably right? Did you show up late and your room was a mess and you talked about yourself the whole time? If the review is probably right, it's probably time to, like, take a little stock in what you're doing and use it as a positive fuel for you. So there's that, right. So I think that sometimes we need to hear a little negative criticism to understand, like, I can't just slack in my business. So there's that. But then there's also the negative review, where you know you're providing an amazing service, you know that you're doing the best that you can, and there's always gonna be that negative Nelly, that you didn't do it, just perfect. The tea you handed her was a little too hot when she sat in your quiet area and now she's giving you a two star review because she didn't like chamomile tea, she wanted green tea or whatever. Like there's those people, right? So should we be no contact, not responding Like we never saw it or heard it? Like, oh, I got a negative review. What do you mean Like I don't pay attention to those, or should we actually be responding?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, yeah, absolutely. I'll preface this by saying you should read and respond to every single review, negative or positive. That's a huge thing. Google wants to see that as well. But for those negative reviews, I personally have read a lot and I've seen some people where it's almost like they take it personally and they're fighting back in the reviews and that looks even worse than not replying at all. So make sure you don't do that. Take it for what it's worth, Whether it's a legit, like you said. The first case it's a legitimate piece of feedback, right, we actually got a five-storey review for our website build over the other day, but they also gave some feedback of like, hey, it would be nice to improve this process, and I was like, funny, you say that we're literally banging our head against the wall trying to figure that out. So if somebody gives you a legitimate feedback, take it for what it's worth. It may be that person, like you said in scenario two, where it's like they're gonna complain about everything. Offer them a solution. Thank you so much for your feedback. We appreciate you taking time. We'd love to offer you something or we'll reach out to you, whatever that looks like. But do make sure you reply there and if it's something that you know, it's that scenario two, where you're fired up and you're like this isn't true. Sit on it for 24 hours before you reply and you'll often rethink how you're gonna reply in that knee-jerk reaction to where you're gonna be frustrated and reply that way. So but do reply and make sure it's in a positive light, because it's gonna show more on you than that person that's in the video On your character.

Speaker 1:

Sure, absolutely, and try offline to maybe make it right. Like there might be something you absolutely didn't do great, like reach out to that person, not through the review response, but reach out to that person and say, hey, I saw your Google review. Maybe one of your staff members really didn't do a great job. I'd love to improve that for you. How can I have you back and make that better and make sure I have green tea in my pocket and not all chamomile, or whatever. But and say I hear you, I hear you and I would make this right. You know like I love that. But how can we use those positive reviews without saying, oh my gosh girl, thank you so much for the five stars, I love you too. It's amazing. Yes, we should respond. But how can we use those strategically to our benefit?

Speaker 2:

You can. I mean, there's a number of ways you could share those out on social media. Obviously, it's a great way to share the feedback in that, and then also, obviously, embedding them on your website to showcase the testimonials. And, you know, put the live feed from Google on there so people not, you know, not written text where you could copy and paste whatever you want, but it's important to do that. You know, our new review tool that we have, sinisto, allows the embedding and the social sharing directly from within the tool. We could talk more about that later, but it's important to make sure that you're utilizing those and leveraging them for whatever it is and it's. You know you can have a screenshot of a bunch of the reviews and just post them on social. You can do it from within a tool like Sinisto, or you can simply you know, at least make sure you're putting them on your website so that people can see those live feed. It's a way to give that social proof that people are looking for without having to leave your website.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, yeah. So you just mentioned Sinisto and this is a plug for that, because I'm a busy, busy woman. Yeah, I have five kids, I have a brick and mortar store, I have love to sugar, I have a podcast. We're doing all the things I have to have a social life. I like there's only 24 hours a day, I don't want to burn myself out. Like seriously, when it came to tech, I was like great, you got to help me. Man, when I met you, we were just talking about, you know, socials and just websites in general, and then you came out with a Sinisto thing and I'm like dude, you're magical. Please help us to understand that there really are tools out there that you know. When you say, like embedding your review, you know people go, like I said they're walking on the trail, I'm going, oh, great, let me just embed my review real quick. Like you know, let me put it on my to-do list. You know, like what have you seen that is and why you created these tools in our industry, like most, like it's not that we're not smart, it's not that we don't want to do this, it's really that there's just so much to know and you kind of take that off the plate. So address that a little bit.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I mean, it comes back to time. Even with a website service, where we started. It's like you can go, you know, create your own website elsewhere. You can take the time to create the content that we'll need. You can go create the website, figure out the website builder, figure out the SEO and all that right, it's going to take you a minimum of 20 hours I would guess probably more than that and how many weeks? Glasses of wines, headaches, et cetera, you know. So we want to save the people time and set them up for success. So if we can do that in a strategic, you know, more systematized way for you, we want to help with that. And then on the review side, you know, it was like we saw that people are spending so much time and resources on all these other social platforms right but they're not spending it on the ones that really move the needle. You know, if you listen to our podcast, we had over 130 guests and I look at all these people's businesses. They are ranking at the top for their website as well as their reviews. We're fortunate enough to do work with a lot of them, but others, you know, don't. But we want to make sure that we set them up for success. So with reviews, we knew like it's hard to make the ask. So you know, with Sinistro, for instance, you can go get the reviews from within the tool. It'll send out either SMS or email. You can send it out directly. You can do one client at a time. You can upload a CSV of a thousand clients at a time and it'll do it for you. To take that a step further, because people's time is so limited, it's hard to remember hey, I sent out this review but nobody answered. Right, we have automated reminders at three and seven days to where, if somebody doesn't click that link, it'll send them a reminder and you can customize what that reminder says. So it's not the same message over and over again and some people don't want to be bugged people. But at the end of the day you typically have to ask more than once to get a review, unless it's a good friend where you can literally sit beside them and watch them do it. But you know, systematizing that and adding it to it. You know we want to build out some more things, but at least having that and having a place. You know it creates a review link, it creates a QR code. You can do all that from within it. You can look at the analytics and see how well it's doing. And even recently we added a thing to because it's so important to reply to all your reviews. You can go in and hit reply. If you don't want to type your own thing, just click AI reply and it will send like a three paragraph, a nicely written thing. It actually interprets the review and then reads through and puts out a legitimate response. Yeah, and that's good, because you're not going to Google and seeing every single reply is the same and Google sees that too Like thank you so much, grant. Thank you so much, carly. Thank you so much, sarah. It's like legitimately, like we're glad you had a great experience, you mentioned this, this and that, like it actually reads through and gives you a legitimate reply within that. So all these things can be done.

Speaker 1:

I'm so grateful for you.

Speaker 2:

So you can go in and look at the reviews, you can filter and see. You know, you can pull in. Once you connect your profile, for instance, it'll show you all the reviews and you can say hey, show me all the unanswered reviews. Even if they're from five years ago, we still want to reply to all those. And you can go through and knock those out. You know, one at a time. You can use the AI reply or you can actually reply yourself, but there's just so many benefits to doing that and having a system where everything's controlled within that. And again, as far as the embedding goes, I know it's confusing, but you know, if you're using a website builder like ours, it's just a simple thing where we would actually do it for you. We just need that code and clip it in there. But we try to make all that stuff as easy as possible because we know how challenging it can be and how overwhelming it is as a small business owner. And really time is, you know, the most important thing.

Speaker 1:

Oh man, you're preaching to the choir. So I have literally taken a very sporadic approach to my social media as it relates to my brick and mortar. It's kind of like all over the place. When I had a minute when I was thinking about it. If I happen to be watching something like, oh shoot, I should probably look at my reviews. I don't have time for that. You took literally all of this random all over the place time and just made one spot for me to go. I schedule into my day, into my marketing piece. I go in, I check everything, I do what I need to do, check on to the next thing. Those are the things, like you said, that move the needle. On that note, if you had, what's your biggest advice? If somebody was like gosh, I'm doing lots of things, grant, I'm doing dancing with my sugar ball, on TikTok with the lip syncing. I asked for reviews a few years ago. I haven't looked at my website forever. If I was really going to sit down as of today, because it's going to change this time next year and we're going to update this, I think once a year we should do this. What's the biggest advice that you can give? Beauty student, esthetician, cosmetologist, whatever beauty pro, what's the biggest advice that you could give us if we want to really make things different for next year? How can we start now? What can we do to really move that needle? That would be just like, maybe even three things that would be just so strong for our audience For sure.

Speaker 2:

I'd start with a Google Business profile, simply because it's free and everybody can utilize it. If you don't have one, go set it up. There's plenty of videos how to do it. It'll walk you through the process. Make sure that profile is filled out to 100%. Google actually tell you 80%, whatever that looks like. Make sure you put the categories, the description, a unique description. If you can put as many words in there, fill it out. Whatever the max words is, fill it out. They want that. Put pictures, put services, put pricing. Fill it out 100%. Make sure you do that. If you're new, if you're a new profile or not, go through. If you don't want to use a service like Sonisa, that's fine. If you have an email as a scheduling system, look at your workflow and say how can I add this review request in here? If you're using any scheduling software, you can certainly probably set it up to say, 24 hours after the appointment, send this out. Or I was interviewing somebody a couple days ago and she has three locations now they have almost 700 reviews collectively. She's like I personally, as the owner, literally text the new clients every day, the next day and ask for that review. Say, hey, I'm the owner. I'd love your feedback and it's work for her, so she could utilize the tool, like Sonisa, and build that in if she wanted, or she can manually do it, it doesn't matter to us as long as it's getting done, but that's going to help boost you, obviously. So that's like a couple of things. And then going back to the website if you don't have a website, get one. Make sure you have that because at the end of the day, not only from an SEO and visibility standpoint, but from a credibility standpoint, it goes a long way in showing that you're a legitimate business. We subconsciously kind of basically gauge a business based on all these factors, whether it's social media or website, and say they have a good website. I could see them being their luxury versus this website that was thrown together 20 years ago and you're like, yeah, they're probably not worth that ticket price item. So that credibility factors huge. So if you spend some time, improve your website, find a service that can provide it for you, whatever that looks like, but make sure you have that and that it's up to par for what you need.

Speaker 1:

I love it. I love it, Grant. I think we could legit. I think we talked about three different web podcasts that we can do I think legit we could make this a monthly thing when we just might do that. Thank you so much for all you do and thank you for making my job a whole lot easier, because there's just not enough hours in the day for this sugar boss to make all the things happen, and you really just make it easier, because this is not our talent. Our talent is in the treatment room, and if you can make our jobs easier, then you're our new best friend. So I'm really really glad that Kelly Callahan from the play the spray tour and all the different spray tanning things that she does, introduced us all that time ago. And for those of you that are not marketing yourselves and partnering with a spray tanner, oh, that's a whole another podcast that I'm fixing to do right now, because we all have the same audience and we can be referring people back and forth. So check the reviews and the Google business profiles of some spray tanners in your area and see if you can find someone to partner with. That's a whole another. Like I said, there's a fourth podcast. Yeah, there you go, so thank you so much for your time. We are, as always, grateful to have you in our toolbox and I look forward to chatting with you soon.

Speaker 2:

Thanks, shannon, take care.

Speaker 1:

See, I told you so. Grant is one of the coolest guys in our industry. He is, as you heard, just calm, cool and collected, but he gets a job done and he's really helped me, as I said, in my business, to just work smarter, not harder. So I hope you enjoyed this episode. I will tell you that we have some powerhouse episodes coming up that will change the way you see sugar, to be honest. You're going to be learning about ingredients. You're going to be learning about the health of the skin, nourishing the skin. In the coming weeks and months, you're going to be learning more about business, and there's so many ways that you can help your business to grow. Make sure there's bodies on the table enjoying your sugar services, your aesthetic services. Even in the slower months, like January or March, you know it's really about how you market yourself, because if your business is slow, it's because you're not letting enough people know about it. So I hope you learned a lot and that you're going to use these tidbits in your business, and I really hope that you spend some time on you and your clients specifically. So have a fabulously sweet week and I look forward to seeing you in the next few weeks and months, and it's all about the journey together, my friends. So take care and stay sweet.

SEO, Websites, and Reviews for Beauty
SEO Strategies for Estheticians
Optimizing Google Rankings With Website Importance
Importance of Local Business Reviews
Handling and Leveraging Reviews
Review Process for Small Businesses Simplified
Marketing, Partnerships, and Business Growth