Home Smart 100 2011 mylocalsalon (SMART 100)

mylocalsalon (SMART 100)

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The following SMART 100 profile and the information it contains is a duplication of content submitted by the applicant during the entry process. As a function of entry, applicants were required to declare that all details are factually correct, do not infringe on another’s intellectual property and are not unlawful, threatening, defamatory, invasive of privacy, obscene, or otherwise objectionable. Some profiles have been edited for reasons of space and clarity. More about the SMART 100.

mylocalsalon

This innovation initially came to life when…

Shortcuts realised that whilst the Internet offers significant revenue opportunities, less than one fifth of Australian salons have an online presence — and are missing out on potential business. Already enabling salons to take bookings online, Shortcuts wanted to drive more business to salons at minimal risk and cost to them, and enable potential clients to find Shortcuts salons anywhere, anytime.

Shortcuts created an Australian-first, interactive, national directory, www.mylocalsalon.com.au for hairdressing businesses — not only giving them an online presence, but enabling them to access an online market, take live, controlled bookings 24/7, list specials, promote services, collect and display ratings and reviews, etc.

WHAT & HOW

The purpose of this innovation is to…

…break down the unintentional barriers to business — salons are not contactable after hours, closed on certain days or busy. mylocalsalon is a smart salon coordinator that increases revenue — working 24/7, 365 days per year!

It does this by…

…giving salons complete control over appointments made available for online booking 24/7, 365 days. Sophisticated algorithms ensure appointments are made securely, efficiently (without gaps in the appointment book), for the correct amount of time, only with available and appropriately skilled employees, and take into consideration services that require specific rooms and/or equipment, and book these at the same time.

PURPOSE & BENEFITS

This innovation improves on what came before because…

…unlike the current coupon craze, customers can book online directly into a secure appointment book — certain of confirmed booking dates and times. Participating salons control the number of appointments available, stylists available, any specials on offer (discounted amounts/availability period) thereby ensuring they are only filling dead space in their appointment book. Customers enjoy the benefit of instantaneous booking.

Its various benefits to the customer/end-user include…

…the convenience and easy accessibility of salon bookings, even via an iPhone. This increases salon patronage, exposure and revenue. The technology is powerful with complex algorithms yet very simple to use in the form of a very user-friendly website.

COMPETITIVE LANDSCAPE

In the past, this problem was solved by…

…online booking (BookME) available from Shortcuts. Although online booking is available in the travel industry (hotels/airlines), it is not available in the hair industry. mylocalsalon not only takes secure, live, controlled bookings 24/7 but allows salons to access an online market, list specials, promote services, collect and display ratings/reviews, etc. It is an Australian-first, interactive, national directory for hairdressing businesses.

Its predecessors/competitors include…

…the Shortcuts BookME product. Currently there is no equivalent to mylocalsalon in Australia, although the “specials” side is available through coupon/group buying sites like “Spreets”, “Living Social”, “Cudo”, “Jump on It”, “Scoopon” and “Deals”.

TARGET MARKET

It is made for…

…the 80% of hairdresser/spa salons in Australia not transacting online, thereby missing out on revenue, as well as thousands of online users – potential customers – wanting to book via various mediums (i.e. a salon’s website, Facebook or iPhone). We target hair/beauty salons and all online consumers (i.e. a friend admiring another friend’s haircut on Facebook and wanting to book immediately, a new resident to a suburb wanting to book a haircut locally, someone reading an email specials promotion wanting to book immediately, someone with time between meetings in the city wanting to book an appointment via an iPhone, etc.).

DISTRIBUTION STRATEGY

It is available for sale through…

…the Internet and through direct/reseller sales. The directory listing/promotion of specials is free of charge and rather than charging a flat fee, Shortcuts offers a per-transaction charge (minimum monthly charges). Salons only pay if the solution works for them.

Our marketing strategy is to…

…launch mylocalsalon with significant public relations in high profile publications to reach salons (promote the benefits of listing) and consumers (attract new visitors to the site) e.g. Courier-Mail, Sunday Mail, Notebook, Health Smart, Style Icons, Madison online; a social media strategy; a digital marketing strategy and SEO (search engine optimisation) through various means, including Google adwords.

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