In early August, software manufacturer MINDBODY announced that celebrity stylist and salon owner Jonathan Antin had recently signed on to publicly endorse the software and help promote its web and social app solutions. Recently, Antin showed SALON TODAY’s Stacey Soble how he uses MINDBODY, the MINDBODY Express app and his iPhone to keep Jonathan & George, the salon he opened with renowned colorist Amanda George in Beverly Hills, California, six months ago, running smoothly.
Already, the salon has built a reputation for creating some of the most coveted hairstyles in Hollywood. Over the course of their combined careers, Antin and George have worked with the likes of Madonna, Jennifer Lopez, Christy Turlington, Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Hudson. Like most salon owners, Antin, who has owned other salons in the past, finds balancing his work as a stylist and his managerial duties as an owner stressful, especially when he’s working on additional projects, such as starring in reality TV show Blow Out, which chronicled three years of his life as a salon owner and celebrity stylist, or serving as a judge on Shear Genius.
“For me, it’s about being able to do what’s most important—perfect hair, while still knowing I’m running a tight ship and the salon has no issues,” says Antin, who believes a cloud-based software is imperative. “I use my iPhone for everything, and I love being able to access any salon report I want no matter where I am. If I’d had MINDBODY years ago I would probably still be running my past salon, but I had sold it because I simply needed a break after manually running it for so many years.”
To demonstrate, Antin took out his phone and accessed his salon reports. “Even though I’m about to go into an offsite meeting, I can quickly find out exactly how we’re doing without calling my manager, bookkeeper or salon partner. And, I don’t just see what happened last month or last week or yesterday, but exactly how we’re doing now, right in the middle of the day,” says Antin. “I can see how much retail we’ve sold and I can check how many of each service has been booked. For example, now I’m seeing we have a lot more cuts booked than color services, and that’s something I might want to check into, but I also see that we’re 92 percent booked, which means it’s a great day.”
MINDBODY helps salon owners and stylists alike simplify their operations, increase revenue and better serve clients. Its web-based and mobile solutions centralize management needs into one easy-to-use system that includes online booking, inventory management, payroll, retail point-of-sale, merchant account processing and a suite of powerful marketing and client retention tools. The MINDBODY mobile app—MINDBODY express—allows for salon management on the go.
Antin report that all 22 of his salon’s stylists all have the MINDBODY Express application on their phones and that has relieved quite a bit of stress from his front desk team. “Stylists can access their schedules at any time, so we no longer have a number of early-morning calls into the salon, bombarding the front desk team about scheduling issue,” he says. “That frees up the desk staff to do other things, like follow up on the day’s clients who didn’t respond to the appointment text reminders.”
To understand yesterday’s business, and even today’s, is important, but as an owner, what Antin really wants to know about is tomorrow. “I love looking at who is scheduled for the coming week, pulling up their histories, and using that information to pick some loyal clients to receive complimentary treatments or a take-home product. Or, looking to see who might benefit from some additional services,” says Antin. “I’ve never been a big up-sell guy, but now that I can see this information I’ve been thinking more creatively as a business owner, and really offering services that are customized to each client.”
“We’re thrilled that Jonathan Antin will serve as our spokesperson for the salon industry,” says Rick Stollmeyer, CEO at MINDBODY. “As a leader in the wellness space, we believe that beauty is an integral part of complete wellness, allowing for a person to look and feel their best. We’re committed to helping salon professionals practice their craft and focus on creating beauty, without having to worry about the administrative details that come with business.”
As for Antin, he’s discovering that the mobility the software offers isn’t just valuable when he’s out of the salon, but also within it. “When things are really crazy, our stylists can grab one of the credit card swipers, plug it into their own phones and check out clients right at the chair,” he says. “We’ve been able to do so many things in the past few months that I never thought were possible—it’s so technologically advanced, I feel like I’m running a spaceship.”