You should always remember this, How you start will be how you finish. Think about the type of clientele you would like to have? What does she look like? What is her age group? Where does she shop? What type of products does she like to use? What type of career does she have? Does she have a family? What type of books or magazine does she read? Does she work out? Im asking these questions because this helps you develop the exact profile of the type of client you are attracting or serving. And if you think about the type of clients you have, whether she is a professional career woman that works 60 hrs a week , or a yoga loving fitness buff, or stay at at home mom with a tight schedule shuffling her darlings to and from all day, the one thing that they all have in common is TIME.
They all usually have their days and or schedules already planned out, and coming to see you is apart of that, and you have to make sure that your time is conducive to their life and style if you would like to keep them as a client for the longterm. One way to insure that you do this is to stop-
I hate to even look at the word! I can’t stand it. I see it all the time. We are synonymous with that word. It’s the most common peeve of clients and it isn’t a good look. Its disrespectful to them, their time and their money and it cheapens our brand when we don’t value their time and our own.
Theres an easier way to see clients, give them what they came for, get paid what you feel you are worth and let them leave feeling like they got more than what they paid for! Without sacrificing your brand, and both of your time and energy.
Thats always the Goal.
Heres a fact that just may come as a surprise to you..
You can still generate the income you desire to make without overbooking!
Start with having a system thats a multitasking all-in-one platform that will allow you to be handsfree and still run your business efficiently. Even if you aren’t the most savvy detailed person when it comes to reconciling the back-end of your business at the end of the day. Having a user friendly system will make it less challenging for you and you can continue doing what you love. I will share the system I use in more detail!
But we can start to see instant results by implementing these steps today, and get our Spring season off to a great start , because it is one of our busiest seasons, clients are shedding their winter skin, and returning more frequently, there will be proms, graduations , weddings, and just the energy that brings more clientele to your chair, and you want to capitalize on this in the most major way. But set yourself up to do it with ease and effortlessly. So you can enjoy what you do more, your clients will notice the difference , and appreciate the change and be willing to pay for it. Trust me, I would not sit here and create this platform to share this with you if I didn’t know first hand that it could be done. I would like for you to decide for yourself.
You have a scheduling system thats practically your personal assistant that lets you put your business on autopilot, and you can get back to doing what you want to do. Creating the best client experience and letting your bottom line reflect that!
If I did it, you can too!
Lets start with what you need to serve your clients well and to have a dream day,
How are you starting your day?
If you’re like most stylists you have a booking system in place, Style Seat, Vagaro, Demand Force, Booker, Booksy Etc.
Are you set up properly? What does your site say in the first 15 seconds if someone logs on to your site? What do they see?
Is It captivating? Does it represent your brand ? Is it authentic? Does it have all of the most important information,
Who you are- Your Policy, Hours of Operation, Method of payment
What you do
Your best work published
Services with descriptions
And how to contact you?
Social media links? Believe me, they are doing their due diligence and they want to know you better than you do , they want to get a feel for the type of stylist you are before they even sit in your chair, so organic reviews are important as well.
These things keep the client on your page. You want your page to be the first point of contact. It represents your brand.
The reasons Im asking these questions are relative to fact that they play a major part in you time management becoming effective In putting your business on auto pilot.
The more accurate information you put into your site, the information your clients are looking for, they will be more apt to schedule an Appt with you, if you make your booking system user friendly and available for them to schedule themselves at their own convenience. Everyone is online now and clients are getting savvier with researching their next potential stylist. Your Online presence is key and important to growing and scaling your business the right way. They want to know who they are spending their money with and what others are saying about you. What your chair side manner is like as well as your awesome styling skills!
But the one thing that clients look for the most after skills, and prices, HOW ARE YOU WITH
Lets face it, clients are into convenience and willing to pay for it. And if you deliver, you will reap the rewards over and over again!
Timing your services are at the core of the management of your time. It affects how your clients book appts with you and how long you spend with each of them. It also helps you see actually the breakdown of how much you really are making when you break down the divided dollar amount per hour you actually made at the end of day. Example, if your goal is to be an 75 dollar an hr stylist, its no way you can achieve that if the service was 200, but she was there 4 hrs…, that would make you a 50 per hr stylist. If you want to increase your rate , work smarter, not harder.
Timing your services and setting your price point accordingly. Cost of product, labor and time should always be considered in the pricing of your services. The cost of business has to make sense. That’s the number one factor. And if you want to book more that one client at a time, the secret is that the services should never conflict! Meaning, you can’t have 5 blowouts in one hour. Some one will be left waiting. Definitely, and if you just timed how long it actually takes for you to do a blow out and the time you have spent with that client, the other client could have been scheduled afterwards and not waiting. But it starts with you being clear on the correct timing of each service and how long it actually takes to start, processing and finish.
I know for me, I schedule my regular blow outs at 90 minutes apart exactly. If its a new client, when she books, i’ll add an additional 30 min, for consulting and just a measure of safety as far as styling time. Because everyone is different in what they require and how long it may take to finish them , but I like to try to err on the side of caution. For good karma. If they need a trim, that’s timed at 10 minutes and a client can add that. its all added to their time, My system will find the best day and time on my schedule for the requested services and they usually schedule it. I’ve managed to create a flow where clients are now accustomed to booking in advance to ensure they get the appointment time they desire and new clients also get to plan in advance if they want to see me. Fortunately I don’t take walk ins, its very rare because im always booked and so I do offer to refer them to my colleagues, for those that are last minute, I do try to accommodate them as well. Even though I can’t service them.
My next topic
Please have one. It is so effective , it also helps set standards and gives the impression that you are a serious stylist, and you respect time and time is also money.
When you give clients the option of online booking, they also have the option of cancelling, make it clear to them while they are familiarizing themselves with your site. That you have a policy in place and don’t be afraid to charge the client for ridiculous cancellations or repeated cancellations.
Give them a certain time that they have to cancel without any penalties and then when they past that window, set your prices for what it will cost them for last minute cancellations. And make it clear theres no exceptions. Time is money and someone else could have had that time. I make it clear, I charge 100% service charge, for whatever they booked, if they cancel on short notice. Clients will become mindful about scheduling and respect your policy if you enforce it.
How do I do that you ask? easy- I require a credit card to even make an appt. that changes the game for a lot of stylists. It separates the serious clients from the fickle ones. They 95 percent of the time keep their appts because they know you have their information. Your conversion rate is slightly higher when you require credit cards to schedule with you too!
If you have set consistent hours, you have your booking set up to where they can’t book last minute either, say its 9 am, you open at 11, but you don’t have anyone, scheduled at that time, you can elect to have a block where clients can’t book at the last minute and you can set up your system to give you 2,3,4 hours lead time before a client can book a same day appt with you. its up to you and what your needs are. Giving you time to prepare and plan, and you can take them if you elect to. You control the start and end of your book. So you can start the day organized and ready for your clients and not trying to play catch up with them. For me, the clients schedule themselves, but its a request, I still approve or deny the appts. But 99 % of the time, its approved. Its usually booked within the regular set hrs and there’s no conflicts. Unless plans change and I haven’t made the edit on the book yet to block my personal time.
Overall, the vacuum I’ve created keeps my books filled with new and regular clients, its based on my availability. Which is consistent set hrs every week. I’m where I’m supposed to be. On time, Focused and prepared for them, and they, for the most part are happy. Because they know I strive to meet their expectations, i’m present and ready for them and they feel they are in control! They know what to expect every time they come in, and that’s builds a trusting partnership between you and the client. Which keeps them returning to you. The scheduling system also is on auto pilot. They know they aren’t waiting an hr, before they are seen . They know my policy for being late, because its on my site, they have 15 min grace, that’s it. It doesn’t interfere with the next clients appt. and if it does cause a potential conflict, I nicely ask them to reschedule, because the next client shouldn’t be held up. Its common courtesy, to be mindful. Don’t allow bad habits to dictate your brand. Especially with repeat offenders, that’s another reason why we are overbooked. We allow the bad habits of some clients to affect others and it causes a domino affect. Stop that at its core, by setting standards. Standards also means you have to be transparent and accountable as well. You can’t expect your clients to be on time and then you are not. That’s not a good look. Show up, stay present and deliver the best client experience every single time. Your good paying clients will respect and reward you for that, too many of us are afraid to set boundaries and have standards because we are afraid of losing clients.. that is farthest from the truth. It actually is the opposite, it will grow your clientele by the numbers. Because being a stylist that doesn’t overbook and runs on time is an anomaly in this industry. And clients will pay heavily for it, its like trying to catch a Unicorn!
Like I stated earlier, here’s the system that I use to create a handsfree scheduler and all around back end business assistant, it tracks my inventory, let’s me create at a gallery of my best work keeps all the numbers to my business, I can see the total snapshot of how I’m doing, I can send emails and texts to communicate with my clients, track all my expenses and let clients leave me reviews as well As process their payments ! Gift cards are available for clients to purchase too. I can’t ask for a better system!
Let me your thoughts and If you have questions!
To Your Best Life!