Well, it’s been quite a year for everyone involved with Braid Barbers. It only seems like yesterday that David, Rob and myself sat down in The Sun pub in Hardingstone to discuss trying out a few new marketing ideas for the business. We decided on a 3-month trial run, just to see how things went, and I think it’s pretty safe to say that we absolutely smashed it in 2015.
We now finish the year with a fantastic new website, designed by the evergreen team over at Easiserv.com in Northampton, over 24,000 followers on Instagram, over 3,000 Twitter followers and over 1,000 likes on Facebook. It’s amazing to think that we were a little concerned over our pints in the pub that we might not be successful!
A huge bonus in creating our social media campaigns was obviously Rob’s amazing photography skills. A keen travel photographer for over 10 years, his competitive spirit is what really helped launch the Braid brand online, as that guy refuses to be beaten by anyone at anything! Thankfully, he’s lost his edge on the squash court though, so now you know his achilles heel!
I first realised that we could be onto something special when Rob sent me this picture below. The whole composition of the shot with the background and the mood really blew me away. This was in the very early days of the Braid social media campaign, so this stunning shot only received 48 Instagram likes!
For me, the picture above was like a lightbulb went off and I think the same happened for Rob too. Suddenly everyone around the company started to get a real buzz from what we were up to. After all, social media offers the world an opportunity to see your work, so you have to make sure every cut is on point. Just like one below, which was a bit of a game changer for us.
Suddenly we were thinking outside the box, as the artistry used to create the hair matched that of the pictures themselves. The haircut above was when a lot of people on social media stood up and took notice of what Braid Barbers were all about; seriously stylish haircuts presented immaculately. It also first brought us to the attention of Modern Barber Magazine, who asked us to create a feature on how we created this style.
All of our models are Braid Barber customers, though that doesn’t mean we aren’t willing to think outside the box when we see something special! For example, the guy below was minding his own business filling up his car with petrol when Rob saw him, did a U-turn and offered him a free beard trim and a picture. We didn’t touch the hair this time though; that would have been a step too far!
During 2015 we also moved premises to our new home inside the Milton Keynes Shopping Centre at 769 Midsummer Boulevard. The new shop offered David a fantastic new blank canvas to work his interior design magic on and I think it’s fair to say he did a fantastic job.
An interesting turn of events in 2015 was when our regular customer and long time model Ross Smith entered the Apothecary87 beard competition. We helped him put together his hair, beard and entry picture with the super talented Kim Hardy Photography. After thinking we had finished second, Ross ended up winning the whole thing and was featured in FHM Magazine for December alongside Cristiano Ronaldo!
We also had the Japanese Rugby team pop into our Leamington Spa store for a trim after they had just shocked the planet by defeating South Africa in one of the biggest World Cup upsets in rugby history.
We were lucky enough to have our work regrammed and retweeted by some of the biggest hair product companies in the world, with Rob putting together these collages for our end of year Best Haircuts of 2015.
Plus, of course it wouldn’t be Braids without a showcase of some of the seriously magnificent beards that we’ve worked on throughout 2015. It’s been like a lumberjack’s paradise in store and this allowed us to create our Best Beards of 2015!
As you can see, 2015 has been quite the journey for everyone involved with Braid Barbers. We have lots more exciting stuff in the pipeline for the New Year, so don’t forget to follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for all the latest cuts, news and views from the shop floor and beyond.
Thanks to all the staff and customers who have made this year so special for us. We couldn’t have done it without your continued support and here’s wishing you all a very Happy New Year.
Roll on 2016, we’re coming to get ya!