Creating an engaging and customized experience for their clients became easier for salon owners with the launch of Smarter LifeStyle Network. Offering fashion, beauty, and wellness programming on high-definition screens and tablets placed throughout salon processing and reception areas, Smarter Lifestyle Network helps to make wait time worth the wait.
Towards the end of 2017, it was announced that professional beauty and salon industry veteran, Pat Parenty, had joined GenOne Media Group, parent company of Smarter LifeStyle Network, as the company expands its salon footprint. Under Parenty’s guidance as the president of the professional products division, L’Oréal USA experienced significant growth in sales as he drove the expansion of the company’s distribution network to boost consumer connectivity. Parenty retired from his role with L’Oréal in January 2017.
For his dedication to the professional beauty industry, Parenty was awarded the 2014 Legend Award from the International Salon/Spa Business Network. In his acceptance speech, he echoed one of the driving forces of his work to “allow all salon professionals to earn a better living and live a better life.”
MODERN spoke with Parenty on how Smarter Lifestyle Network will help salon owners and stylists offer guests a more robust service and retail experience, while also providing them with data to help them make better, more informed decisions.
MODERN SALON: What do salon owners need to do differently to compete in the changing landscape?
Pat Parenty: The changes in retail and consumer experience are being driven by consumers and everyone is moving in that direction. The advantage salons have is their established relationship with the client through the service and the stylist as the expert—it is the foundation and the strength of the salon environment. Today, then, you need to do the things that increase engagement with the client and you must have available communication where consumers are looking for it and how they are looking, to help them make great decisions, and so you succeed in retail and across the board.
In a salon, we have the benefit of having that person in the chair. With Smarter Lifestyle Network, you can make that connection and that experience even stronger while they’re there and maintain it in between visits. You will be at a disadvantage if you’re not speaking to your client personally when they’re in your salon but also digitally in between visits to help them maintain their service and introduce new things.
MS: Are you seeing salon owners getting on board with new technology?
PP: Yes, I believe the industry has now recognized the value that these technologies bring. If you’re a salon owner or a stylist, you’re also a consumer and you understand the landscape so you have used these platforms and tools as a business person and as a consumer. Salon owners are finding ways to load technology into their process to make for a smoother, richer consumer experience.
MS: How can salons use content to promote products and educate their client?
PP: While the starting point is the salon expert, using digital content can help the consumer better understand the product and provide them with the right recommendation. There are stylists who might be uncomfortable with the idea of selling to their client, but the content delivered over the platform can help the consumer understand what is available and can spark the conversation between client and guest about what makes sense for them to purchase.
Salons can now provide curated entertainment and content to inspire the client and to monetize that waiting or processing time. They can create a conversation that helps them communicate what they want a guest to hear. We’re engaging the client in a new way and that translates to long-term business success.