click image to zoom One of the biggest challenges for newly minted stylists and seasoned veterans alike is filling their time or their chair. Having a guest in the chair is the only way we are successful as stylists, colorists, nail techs, estheticians or massage techs, so it’s important that we have an action plan to make that happen.
The first question I always asked someone wanting to work at our salon was “What are you going to do to get busy?” Too often the response was “Don’t you have a lot of walk-ins?” This was not at all the answer I wanted to hear. Or sometimes a newbie would say, “Well, I’ll get busy through word of mouth,”to which I’d respond that they didn’t yet have any clients who are going to talk about them. What I was looking for was someone who understood that they needed to be proactive. That’s someone I can work with and teach how to fill his or her chair.
Speaking to both friends and strangers about their hair is one of the best ways to start attracting business for yourself, and how you go about it is important. Too many times I’ve heard hairdressers start a conversation with something like “Who does your hair?” while asking in a rather derogatory way. This is quite simply one of the worst things you can do. Never -- and I mean never -- put down someone else’s work.
The approach we used worked very well and I’m happy to share it: I’d go up to every person I saw and introduce myself by saying “Hello, my name is Jeff and I work at Hair Etc. Salon and Spa and I just had to tell you your hair has so much potential.” Then I would immediately compliment them by pointing out something I liked. For instance, I might say, “I love the length of your hair.” I would then tell them about a haircut and refer to it by name (always name your haircuts). For example, I’d say, “There’s a haircut called Freedom that would look amazing on you. What it would do is give lots of volume throughout your hair. We’d do a bit of piecing around your face that would really accentuate your cheekbones – and you have the most beautiful eyes, so we’d open up this area a bit by creating some framework to show off those gorgeous eyes. How does that sound to you?”
At this point I had their complete, undivided attention and would take out my mobile device and book an appointment right there on the spot. I carried $5 Looking Good cash coupons I would give them to use during their first visit.