Beauty First’s Pat Neville hosted the State of the Industry panel, which featured Reuben Carranza, CEO of Wella, The Salon Professional Division of P&G North America; Martin Flaherty, senior vice president of business development at Colomer Beauty Brands USA; and Kristin Firrell, vice president of product development and education at John Paul Mitchell Systems. The panel predicted the biggest trends to shape the beauty industry in the coming years to be the graying of America, significant regulatory changes in manufacturing and professional licensing, and the improved performance of styling products.
During the afternoon, attendees signed up for speed meetings, one-on-one meetings with vendors, who hosted small tables at the ISBN Linkup Lounge. Manufacturers donated fun prizes, such as iPad minis, Beats headphones by Dr. Dre, and $1,000 cash, and a new winner was drawn during each speed meeting round.
On the following morning, Speaker T. Scott Gross had the audience laughing out loud as he showed them how to deliver positively outrageous service in a digital age. “What customers want is to feel good and be pleasantly surprised,” he told the group. “If you can get a customer to say ‘Wow,’ it creates a halo effect around your business—the customer is psychologically compelled to tell your service story to others.”
In a special,“Keys to Success” session, ISBN members shared some of their best practices. Michael Portman of Bird’s Barbershops in Austin, Texas, shared how to turn local marketing into national buzz; Cory Anderson of Australia’s Price Attack shed some light on the salon business down under; Gary Reed Jr. of Hair Zoo in Rochester, New York, shared how they appreciate staff and hold them accountable; Debra Penzone of Charles Penzone Inc. in Columbus, Ohio, divulged their strategies for dealing with the financial implications brought on by the Health Care Reform Act; and Gordon Logan, CEO of Sport Clips, looked back on some of the milestones of growing one of the most successful franchises.
After lunch, Steve Overholser, CFO and Treasurer of Great Clips walked the audience through the impact of the Affordable Care Act on salon business. “Basically, this legislation is looking at a way to provide health insurance for 30-40 million who currently aren’t covered, and it resulted in about 15,000 new regulations,” he said. “The law will create significant changes in the way companies provide health care options for employees and in the way individuals purchase self coverage.”