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The Gents Place Puts a Modern Twist on Barbering

My introduction to the Gents Place was through a Facebook ad that offered a free cut, shampoo and hot towel treatment—a $35 value—in exchange for my name, phone number, e-mail address and preferred social network. Who could resist? While waiting for my turn at the shop in downtown Leawood, Kans., I took advantage of the Wi-Fi access to catch up on the news on my iPad. Since the chop was free, I opted for a $10 add-on, a lathered neck shave with a straight razor. Ah, nice.

When I got home I mentioned the experience to my Facebook followers. Next day I got a message via LinkedIn from Davis, the 29-year-old founder of the Gents Place. He personally connects with every new client who provides a contact via LinkedIn, Google+ or Twitter. “I realized pretty early on that our business is social, by its very nature,” he says. There’s no better way “to connect like-minded guys in the local community and create long-term relationships.”

Think about how social networking could impact other “old line” businesses…