The Cut & Color Room doesn’t split hairs: The snootiness and arrogance so prevalent across rival salons have no place here. “Our specialty is a no-attitude environment,” says Jeff Morris, co-owner of the Orlando, Fla.-based business. “Other salons can make customers feel self-conscious. But everyone on our staff is so nice. You can feel the difference.”
Maybe too nice. The Cut & Color Room maintains an impressive inventory of beauty products from upscale brands like Bumble and bumble, Alterna and Goldwell, and its stylists regularly recommend items tailored to their clients’ needs. But too often Morris stood by as patrons took those expert suggestions to nearby retailers, purchasing the exact same products from national chains like Sephora or Ulta in order to earn customer rewards points.
“Losing that business lit the match underneath us,” Morris says. “We knew we needed to work on something to keep those sales in-house.”
The salon owners decided to introduce a rewards program of their own. But Morris wanted to steer clear of the standard “buy 10, get one free” punch-card model. Instead, he partnered with Perka, a cardless loyalty system optimized for iOS and Android smartphones that offers consumers increasing tiers of perks in exchange for frequenting local merchants and checking in via the application. It’s a quintessential example of gamification; i.e., leveraging gameplay mechanics to engage consumers and solve problems.
The Cut & Color Room offers clients a range of rewards–from services to free flatirons and blow-dryers–for as few as 100 Perka points or as many as 10,000, depending on the retail value of items purchased. “For every dollar you spend on our products and services, you receive one point,” Morris explains. “You don’t get haircut points at Sephora.” The salon also offers points for booking follow-up appointments and referring new customers.