How To See Fewer Clients For The Same Amount Of Money
4 Tips To Take Fewer Guests Without Reducing Take-Home Pay
Fewer Clients, More Meaning: 4 Tips From Robert Cromeans
Not seeing as many clients as usual? You’re not alone. Whether your state is mandating reduced occupancy in the salon, or you’ve decided to stop double-booking to limit the number of people in your space, it’s likely that you’re simply seeing fewer guests day-to-day—and also likely that your income is less than pre-pandemic. Business guru for John Paul Mitchell Systems and multi-salon owner Robert Cromeans (@robertcromeans) shared four smart tips to actually make MORE money with fewer clients—keep reading for his advice from The BTC Show Online’s special segment all about finances, Show Me The Money (In The Bank)!
When Robert’s San Diego salons were open directly after the first statewide shutdown, stylists saw fewer guests—but they also saw the highest paychecks they’d ever had, even though they did not increase prices. Why?
“Fewer guests, more meaning,” Robert said. “We spent more quality time per guest—more thorough consultations and more dialogue. Every hairdresser in my company is seeing less hours committed to the salon but seeing their paycheck increase.”
1. Use the consultation as a gateway to upsell.
Was there ever a time when you actually suggested a guest NOT get color, because you were too busy to do it? Those days are over, Robert said. Not only does a thorough consultation help your guest feel more connected to you (which helps with loyalty and increased frequency of visits), but listening for key words can give you cues on what to suggest for the current and future appointments.
Your client says her hair is feeling dry and damaged. Suggest a special treatment as an add-on service today. Explain that she can come back in four weeks for a gloss and another treatment to keep her hair in ultimate condition before her next regular color appointment. You’ve not only added a service today—you’ve also made it a no-brainer for her to return again, and sooner than usual.
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2. Charge for every service—for real.
Another reason Robert’s team received higher paychecks? They honored the service menu. “If you do a haircut, a single process, a smudge root—these all have costs,” he said. “We’ve been shy to charge these rates. Discounting without permission is theft. If you give the client a deal, you’re stealing from yourself.”
The chart below shows how much this ticket SHOULD be if you charge for every service. The clients you want in your chair are the ones that understand these costs and are willing to pay them. If you aren’t charging for all product use and for the services you’re offering, you’re short-changing yourself. Divide the total for the service by the amount of services you did to get the average cost per service.
3. Spend time with your client instead of hiding in the break room.
We are all experiencing this pandemic, proving more than ever that mental health matters. Your clients’ visits to your chair help THEM feel better mentally! So sit with your client while her color processes. Talk to her and make her feel great (from a socially distant position!). Give her the shampoo of her dreams. If you build strong relationships with 100 clients that love you and come back to your chair more often, you won’t need to see as many clients in the long-run to make the money you want to make.
Building these strong guest experiences gives you the chance to hand-pick the clients you want, rather than rush through many clients. Check out how 100 loyal guests with high frequency of visits and ticket averages can raise revenue. “This gets us to a place where we can figure out the balance between the workday and our lifestyle,” Robert said.
4. Use take-home retail to your advantage.
Most stylists don’t like to sell retail, but Robert showed how retail sales can actually pay your rent if you make a goal of it. Think about it this way: You already love suggesting your favorite products to your friends. You already know her top concerns from your thorough consultation. You’ve given her an amazing in-salon experience. She can keep feeling amazing at home if she uses the products you suggest. “People who buy product from a pro and take them home are more likely to come back,” Robert said.
Check out these charts that show how you can determine how much retail you should sell to cover your rent (these are real numbers from a real salon suite). Then use the quality time you have with your client and everything else we’ve discussed in this article to make smart suggestions about how she can take her experience home with her until she returns to your chair.
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