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Why Salon Owners Focus on The WRONG Things!

Last week, I got a call from a frustrated salon owner that spent half her day trying to figure out why her inventory was off by a very small amount of money (under $100).  It turned out that someone forgot to tell her that a few products were taken from the shelf to be used at a styling station.

And this got me thinking of a time when I attended a convention of salon owners about 10 years ago.  At that convention, I was doing a presentation to about 80 salon owners that between them controlled about 400 salons.  During my presentation, an owner (of about 10 salons) stopped me midstream and started asking questions about a certain sales report and how the report looked different than another report in the system.  She couldn’t understand why one report said this and another said that.

After I explained the difference to her, and consequently wasted 79 other salon owner’s time, I realized that many salon owners still focus on exactly the wrong things.  And that hasn’t really changed over the last 10 years! 

When you are running a salon, there are only a few things that you should be spending 75% of your time on.  And here they are.

About twenty percent of your week should be focused on getting new clients for the salon.  Now, most salon owners spend less than an hour a week on this task.  Why?  Because they don’t really know how to start the process.  For example, the HairMax salon software has an excellent client referral program built into it that can help you get more new clients.  Are you using it?

Every 2 weeks, you should be implementing one new marketing technique to get new clients in the door.  Some will work and others will fail, but at the end of the year, you will have at least 10 new marketing systems in place that will drive new clients into your salon business every week.  How many do you have now?

Look, salon owners are no different than any other small business owner out there.  We like to do the things that we are good at.  And when we are uncomfortable doing something – we tend to stop doing it.  Unfortunately, most salon owners never delegate the task to anyone else and nothing ever gets done in some of these critical disciplines.

Another twenty percent of your week should be focused on getting existing clients into your salon quicker and getting them to buy more services.  This is really a combination of client appointment reminders, cross-selling services, and introducing clients to services that they never had before.  The HairMax salon software does this exceptionally well and you should be using those features to drive your sales.

Another ten percent of your week should be focused on making your salon a better place to be for the client.  Improve customer service, communicate with first-time clients, find some content for a client newsletter, improve the salon appearance, etc. 

Another ten percent of your week should be focused on the staff.  Ten more percent should be focused on resurrecting old clients and improving client retention.  HairMax can easily help you with those as well. 

Five percent of your week should be spent on developing systems to make the salon run better and more efficiently.  Our inventory example at the beginning of this article would fall into that category.  Going through financial reports and salon statistics would also fall into this group.

The moral of the story is this – don’t waste your time on things that will have very little impact on the success of your salon.  Salon growth is stagnated because salon owners fail to do the things that they are uncomfortable doing.  Spending the bulk of your time on trivial issues and servicing your “personal” clients is not going to make your salon more profitable. 

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