PR within 2 weeks of signing Craig Chapman!

Craig Chapman from Craig Chapman Hair Design has only been our client for two weeks and already his PR is rocking!

To date, Craig’s gorgeous Afro Hair collection for 2011 was used for the front cover of Black Hair’s Feb/March issue, plus said Afro collection spawned five pages in Black Beauty Magazine.

Craig has a full page review booked in his local magazine Cornwall Today, a half page hair makeover give away in Cornwall Life, his charity news story is going in Cornish Guardian next week and his salon interior images are booked to go in Hairdressers Journal.

So much Hair PR in so little time and this is just the beginning. I guess this just reaffirms why we’re called Catalyst!

We don’t believe in being bogged down with bureaucratic PR forecast reports – we believe our time should be spent getting the results. Time and time again all our new clients, including Craig Chapman, are surprised when they see they have a great piece of Hair or Beauty PR booked within weeks of coming on board, and we’re surprised they’re surprised!

It’s great to receive such fantastic results so quickly, but this doesn’t go without strategic planning. Everything we do is done with meticulous planning – but at a rapid pace. After all, what’s trending today may not be trending tomorrow, so in order to angle your client in with a topical subject, you have to keep one eye on what’s current and another on what the journalists are interested in covering then get pitching – that’s what working in hair PR is all about!

Journalists are busy people and if you sit waiting for their editorial call out, hoping it will have something in there for your client, then you’ll be waiting months before anything appears in the press! It’s all about having bags of energy and enthusiasm for what you do and we have plenty of that. Plus, I like to think it’s more to do with our creative skills and less to do with the amount of Haribos and biscuits we get through per day.

Lunchtime musings of Catalyst PR girls

This lunchtime, we the CatPR ladies held a very important meeting in which we discussed hairstyles. Whilst spooning a nutritious soup (Elizabeth), nibbling a healthy salad (Jess) and wolfing a tasty Big Mac and fries (who else but me), we talked in earnest about the type of fashion look we wanted to emulate in Spring 2012.

I want big curls, Elizabeth wants to try out the ombre look, and Jess is going to give her hair a boost with a bit of volume and may consider wearing a Halo Hair Extension (which conveniently, is a hair client of ours).

With us working in hair and beauty PR, we have to reflect the trends you know. Reflect what you represent is what I say! We’ll be blogging about some of our clients fashionable hair and beauty products in the months to come, so keep an eye out.!

Judgement Day for the Hair Awards 2012

Tomorrow is Hair Awards Judging Day! This will be held at the Goldwell Academy, Mayfair. This is the moment of truth, when the nominees for best hair products, electrical tools, hair extensions, hair salons and hair stylists will fall under scrutiny by some of the most illustrious names in the hair industry.
The judging process will be impartial for they will also be relying heavily on the reader tester’s feedback about the brands and salon services they’ve tested. The judges are a mix of beauty and hair journalists, hair brands and hairdressers. They’re all professionals so no X-Factor style hissy fits!
The Catalyst team will be down there tomorrow making sure things are going according to plan. We’ll arrive 9am sharp to run through our appointed tasks before the judges arrive at 11am.
By the way, Catalyst has no input in the judging process so we won’t be able to tell you who’s won no matter how many pairs of Louboutins you offer!

Five simple steps for selling success

Hi all

Just to introduce myself, I am the PR and Marketing Director for Catalyst. One of my functions at Catalyst is to drive new business development, starting off with our expertise in Hair and Beauty PR. It struck me in my first week, when I was using methods that have always succeeded for me and grown past business, that I would share them with you.

So five simple steps for selling success:

Promote one product or service at a time, this is clear simple and effective both for you and your team to sell and your client to buy, there is no confusion of choice for the buyer just a simple yes or no.

Secondly big up the benefit, whatever is the biggest benefit of your product or service for the customer tell them about, get it out there, do not hide it away, this is what will grab their attention and keep them interested.

Match your customer, personalise to each individual, people buy from people they like, if you relax your customer by personalising you are likely to succeed. This can also be achieved on your website, by creating personalised pages for each market you intend to target.

Give examples and be specific, with PR we get questioned all the time, because the service is not seen as a tangible good. At Catalyst we can quantify a statement, if we say we can increase your coverage we can specifically show evidence from clients before they joined us, to increased coverage since they came on board.

Show passion, as I said earlier people buy from people they like, be enthusiastic, we seldom by on logic, we buy on emotion, if you are emotional about your product or service the customer will get excited. This can be applied throughout all media you use.

Start using these techniques now they cost nothing to use and they work!

That is all from me for now, Good Luck

Please contact Catalyst today and let us help you grow your business.

The BB Cream – It’s the beauty lover’s dream.

Working in beauty PR, when something’s branded as the ‘Swiss Army Knife of the beauty industry’ – I like to think it’s my prerogative to try it. It’s the rise of the BB Cream, also known as a Blemish Balm, which has got me on my hands and knees scouring the shelves for my perfect colour.

It’s a central part of modern life to seek out things that make our hectic lifestyles simpler and that is the USP, the joie de vivre, the pinnacle of the BB Cream; it evens skin, covers blemishes and hydrates and soothes skin whilst offering UV protection all in one bottle – and all I can say, after using mine, is that it works! IT WORKS!

Anne Veck gets six pages of PR in Hair’s How

Liaising with foreign hair and beauty magazines wasn’t something I had been anticipating when I took up my PR placement in London, but it just so happens that Catalyst work hard to ensure their hair and beauty clients are seen worldwide and not just in the UK.

So it makes for a great day when, after working closely with Russian magazine Hair’s How, the six pages I secured dedicated to Anne Veck’s beautiful Coquillage collection appeared in the magazine – and the result was fantastic and looks beautiful; with images splashed all over the magazine and a whole feature dedicated to Anne’s collection inspiration.

So we’ve taken our scans for the archive and sent Hair’s How over to Anne to keep – for such a great piece of beauty PR coverage it definitely wasn’t just going to end up in the recycling.

Google Vs. Outlook

Our web guy, Jay, has prised us away from our precious Outlook to use Google Mail and I hate to admit this to him, but it’s great! So much faster and dynamic- is a must for hectic PR offices in Camden! Glancing at my Gmail calendar, I can see next week is going to be a very busy PR week for me indeed. I’ll be out of the office a lot for meetings with journalist and new Beauty PR clients and I’ll be at the Toni & Guy Academy to report on the Fellowship Colour Project’s latest colour course with Jo’ O Neil. Everybody says I need to get myself a smart phone so I can keep on top of all my Beauty PR appointments, but for me, nothing beats a good old fashioned Filo-fax!

Strategising your business – creating structure

Hi all,

In any business – and in particular in a creative business such as hairdressing and beauty, it is very easy to get carried away by what seems to be a great idea.

However, as a business person, you’ll want to make sure that any new concept will compliment your business overall.
How can you do this?

Create an arrow shape with the point at the top.

Put your overall, singular Business objective on the top of the point – if you seem to have more than one overall objective, then maybe your strategy lack a clear focus – stick to one. (example: Grow the business profitably to 10 salons)

The middle section of the Arrow represents the overall strategies that you are employing to reach that singular objective (example – Develop and launch franchise operation. Create and protect a robust, recognisable corporate identity. Appoint a hair and beauty PR and Marketing agency – more than 5 at the most suggests a too complex strategy mix, try to keep it to three).

On the base of the triangle add all the operations and tactics that you employ to support those strategies (example: recruitment of franchise manager, staff training, identifying and entering awards, researching a new beauty PR and marketing agency, tight budget control).

Now, you should have a complete operational diagram that is a visual record of the development and direction of your business and it also serves as a discipline check for any new initiative.

When you have a new idea – check it against your Strategy Arrow, if the idea meets with the strategies that lead to your ultimate objective, then this activity will contribute to your business.

If you are struggling to slot the idea into the arrow – then the idea needs to be modified or even discarded as it will not contribute to your development.

You can apply strategy arrows to any business or indeed any aspects of your life, once you get used to working with them, they will certainly begin working for you!

Good strategising


Glam up for The Hair Awards 2012!

Not long ‘til the Hair Awards now! A few of our product clients are shortlisted which is fantastic; we’re now just waiting to hear about the hair salon categories.

The Hair Awards is always a glamorous affair with sumptuous canapés and drink flowing throughout the night, so us Catalyst girls (and boys!) have to make sure we scrub up well! The Hair Awards takes place Monday 27th February at the Altitude Bar, Milbank, London. Can’t wait!

Your year planner – Have you done it yet?

Hi all,

I hope you have had a great start to the year?

I have just come back from Australia and the sudden change in weather and daytime light is playing havoc with my families body clocks and health. Still, we did have three weeks away in 40 degree heat.

Anyway, my first day back in the office was Monday and I was surprised to hear so many of our Beauty PR clients call in talking to our Graphics, Marketing and Website departments about their February offers, what they wanted to do and how they wanted to do it. I felt a sense of pride.

At Catalyst we organise a year planner for our Beauty PR clients which pro-actively pushes them to run promotions and campaigns monthly either directly to new customers, to existing clientele or better still, both! So with January out of the way, what have you planned for February? The obvious campaign is Valentines Day but I am never totally sold on Valentines. It’s one day and to hang all your hopes on one day in a full month seems odd to me. Also, at a female hair or beauty salon they won’t tend to buy a gift for their husbands, boyfriends etc.

I am not saying to exclude Valentines day but don’t plan your WHOLE month around it. I would look at a strong discount as February is a tough month for many people with credit card bills coming in from Christmas spends.

Also make sure you are asking clients to recommend you and your business either through recommendation cards or simply just asking them to tell people at your business – however, rewarding them for their promotion and loyalty to your brand I would say is essential. It will certainly increase the number of new clients that you meet.

Retail still promises to be harder than ever this year whilst services should still continue to sell well. I am a fan of promoting what works not what doesn’t so within your business start promoting ALL your services month by month so your beauty clients know everything you offer!

For helpful tips and advice on, beauty pr and marketing in 2012 please do feel free to call me on 020 7788 4091.

Stay positive