If you’re looking to be booked out for the long term, the trick is to always be marketing. These tattoo shop promotion ideas are designed to keep your tattoo shop top of mind for previous clients and have more people reaching out consistently. All without having to spend time thinking of what hashtags to use on your next post. I guarantee if you utilize all five of these ideas, you’ll be closing your books more often than you’d like.
#1 Buzz Building Is One Of The BEST Tattoo Shop Promotion Ideas
Regardless if you’re a tattooer, a barber, or a painting contractor. Referral work is typically the most dominant acquisition channel for new clients. Referrals do wonder for your business because it immediately builds credibility if the referral is coming from somebody you trust. Half the battle winning a client is building that credibility and that ultimately you’re capable of the work they want. This is why I actively encourage referral work for my business, all tattooers get a 10% referral fee for life. I love offering this more than something like a Cyber Monday promotion because I hate doing sales. Referrals that inquire about my services tend to be a conversation and less of a sales pitch.
Generating Buzz As Tattoo Shop or Artist
So how do you generate referral work as tattooer? Play to the system of course! Every artist I talk to wants to grow their Instagram following but getting followers in another state probably does very little for your business. So how do you generate a local following? Local hashtags are a great way to do so but how often do you go searching in hashtags for a service? This is why my go-to recommendation for tattoo shop promotion ideas with a shop is:
This promotion does three things for you to help your business.
- This helps build exposure locally, you’re using your clients as promoters for your business. Everyone is an influencer on IG, some more than others. Let your work speak for itself and use what exists to your advantage!
- REPEAT WORK!!! If you’re struggling to keep a booked schedule, how much of your work is new compared to repeat clients? Do you do anything special for your repeat clients? If somebody is a fan of your work and genuinely loves tattoos, they’re going to keep coming back for more because shitty ink sucks! It goes back to that trust factor, if you have an artist you trust it’s hard to go somewhere else unless it’s a specific style you’re looking for.
- You actually get to see your work healed! The more content, the better for your digital presence. You can save the healed work for stories to constantly promote yourself.
#2 Holiday Flash Sales Designed For The Long Term
This is one of the most popular tattoo shop promotion ideas and personally, I’m still waiting to get a Friday the 13th tattoo. I’ve waited in a line multiple times and still haven’t gotten one because of how busy shops were. Admittedly, this is was back when I lived in the city so that might be part of the reason there was a line circling the block for one. This is too good of a promotion to not take advantage of even if you make very little off the tattoo itself. It creates the opportunity for exposure and that’s what promotion is all about!
Take this beyond Friday the 13th though, set time in your schedule to do a predesigned set of flash before every holiday. This leads to more local followers and the chance for more repeat work.
A predesigned set of flash for $50 and no larger than a couple of inches allows you to get a lot of people in your shop all in one day. This is one of the most popular tattoo shop promotion ideas for a reason. I mean this was done pre-pandemic days. Currently writing this it’s the Tuesday before Friday the 13th, November 2020. I have only seen one Friday the 13th promotion but hopefully, this isn’t the new normal forever.
#3 Offer A Discount For Paid Advertising Leads
Google Ads is one of the untapped gold mines for tattoo shops because most of them are focused on social media. This is the opportunity to appear to people at the moment when they’re considering a new tattoo. Google Ads has a lot of unique features for their ads like a promotion code exclusively for people that see them.
If I’m really looking to boost my click rate and get more leads, I put a promotion on my advertisements. For the few shops that I see using Google Ads, they barely use all the features possible. I like to offer this special discount in the advertisement itself rather than on my website because it helps me track who saw my ads compared to found my website through another method like social for example. So if you have Google Ads set up making sure to set up some kind of promo code if you’re looking to try out new tattoo shop promotion ideas.
#4 Host Events Outside Your Standard Hours
This is something that some of the most popular tattoo shops do and it helps establish their presence in the community. It is also one of my favorite tattoo shop promotion ideas because of how low cost it is. It’s just a time commitment for you and your team. Something as simple as an art show every quarter with BYOB is a great way to get more people in your shop who wouldn’t already be visiting. Again, I’m writing this blog in the current Covid-2020 situation so it’s a little difficult to do this right now.
It might seem obvious to most but the more people you have stopping by your shop is a long-term play. Because if they ever consider getting a tattoo they’re going to think about all the tattoo shops they’ve ever been to. If they went to one of your events and connected with one of your artists, they’ll consider visiting them instead of their go-to artist for a change. And who knows, they might even make that their go-to shop afterward. This helps create that opportunity over something that doesn’t really cost any money.
#5 Offer Discounted Gift Certifcates
Again this might seem like an obvious one to some people but after visiting many tattoo shop websites, I feel like I have to mention this. That’s why I’m including it on this list of tattoo shop promotion ideas. Gift certificates are a guaranteed way to make more money because they are only valid at one location, they’ve already been paid for, and keep your business top of mind.
It’s important to incentivize these purchases any way you possibly can. A discounted gift certificate is a great way to do this because psychologically it feels like to a customer they’re walking away with a great deal. If they’re the type of person like me, it gets forgotten and expires. So in that situation, you made money without having to do anything. Those people who forget to use gift certificates can cover the cost of the discount you offer if you need some way to rationalize it.
Get Customized Tattoo Shop Promotion Ideas For Your Shop!
If you’re looking for more assistance coming up with more tattoo shop promotion ideas, DOS-M can help. We specialize in marketing as well as many other things and prioritize tattooers above all other clients. Please visit our tattoo page to learn more about these benefits or schedule a free consultation and we can help provide some ideas.