If you are like most stylists, your eyes are dead set on the dream: to own a large salon business. While starting out might seem easy, staying in business for the long term and growing an empire is a whole other issue altogether.
If you are a stylist looking to venture out on your own, or even an entrepreneur looking to break into the beauty business, you need a clear strategy not just to open an outlet, but to scale it as well.
Here are some tips to help you scale your hairdressing business.
1. Get More Clients
Your client base is a top determinant of when to scale and if you can even scale at all. Here are some ways to attract more numbers.
Design a referral system
Referrals work well in many businesses, hairdressing included. Here, give your existing clients reward points or discounts for bringing in their friends and family. Similarly, you can extend discounts to new customers to help and eliminate their fear of the unknown and try out your services.
Find a differentiator
Look for something you can do to encourage clients to choose your establishment over others. One can be dedicating a children’s corner on one section of your salon. Parents that skip hair appointments because of their kids will be encouraged to come in. Similarly, the kids’ corner will allow parents to come in and relax during their hair treatments without having to juggle their kids. Consider this and other ideas that will help you draw higher numbers.
2. Learn, and Then Learn Some More
Business is highly dynamic. It helps to find opportunities that help you learn, update, and increase your existing knowledge. It’s useful to find out how your competitors and other industry leaders do it. Before setting up shop, try and find an internship, shadowing, and apprenticeship opportunities from top salons in your area. Here, you will learn customer care principles, hairdressing trends, and pick up administrative and operational processes.
3. Upsell Existing Clients
Once you have clients already coming to you for paid services, evaluate ways to make more revenue from them through upselling. Upselling clients to new, better, and higher-priced products and services can help you make more per client, without necessarily spending more on marketing and onboarding. Teach your staff to have a short elevator speech to upsell. This has to be done creatively and tactfully to avoid putting clients off.
The rapport your stylists have with your clients will factor significantly into how successfully they can do this. Also, keep in mind that if you begin upselling too soon, you are likely to lose clients than gain them.
4. Ask Your Clients What They Want
Are you wondering what your clients think of your services? Ask.
If you worried that you would not get honest reviews by asking in person, find ways to get feedback through channels that allow your clients to remain anonymous. A suggestion box, where clients can drop their thoughts is one way to do this. You can also try to incentivize this by creating a contest. The prize can be something like a beauty treatment certificate for someone you pick randomly from the suggestions box. This is bound to get the feedback coming in fast and furious.
Plan, Implement and Measure
As you work on these and other scaling strategies, it will be essential to differentiate effective strategies from those that are delivering little to no result.
To do this, ensure you implement and measure results continually. This will allow you to direct your resources towards the most effective strategies. It will also help you think through your ideas and refine them.