Depending on who you ask and where you look, research indicates that the cosmetology and beauty industry is a multi-BILLION (with a b) dollar business.
It should come as no surprise that women spend lots of money to look good. With that figure in mind, how can we find our niche and start to realize that a portion of that can be yours? Even if you do not plan to own your own salon or spa, you need to learn how to build your clientele to maintain a steady stream of clients.
When you begin in this career, the technical skills are what most students focus on. That is only one piece of the puzzle. It also takes a systematic process which can be done easily if you are consistent in following a few simple steps.
Do not wait until you are working in a salon/spa to build your client base. Talk to all of your family, friends, family-friends, friends of friends, family of family… you get the point. The people you see on a regular basis will be the best free advertising of the work you can do, so use them as a walking billboard. This will be helpful when you finish school and move to your first job.
School is a place where you can ask questions and learn from all of those around you. Become a sponge and talk to advanced students about what they do, what they wish they had done, etc… and find someone you admire to be your mentor. Track your successes and your learning experiences (aka “that didn’t end as well as I would have liked but I will do better next time” moments). What worked and what didn’t will be very helpful in building confidence.
Referrals, Retention, Rebooking, & Retail. I know it seems like we hear this all the time, but if you follow the rule of the 4 R’s, all of the rest will fall into place for you. It takes practice, just like their other skills, but once it becomes habit, you will see the results of practicing these.
Remember that you are in the sales industry and the most important thing you are selling is YOU! Guests that spend money with you will need to trust your professionalism as well as your skills if they are going to come back, so everything you do must be done with that thought in mind. Starting all of this while still in school will give you the right building blocks for success in the salon.
By Melanie Brons : Licensed Cosmetologist & Educator at La’ James International College Des Moines.