As the founder and current CEO of Schedulicity, Jerry Nettuno has witnessed a drastic change in technology over the past 10 years. But with new apps and data floating around, how do you pick the best options for your salon?
At the Salon Digital Summit, Nettuno showed attendees how far tech has come and where it’s going to help them grow in the future. Here, he shares his wisdom by answering five questions:
Q. What’s the most dramatic way you’ve seen technology transform the professional beauty industry?
A: “Helping stylists maintain full schedules daily without using a paper book. When you’re a stylist, your main goal and source of income is to make sure your chair is filled as often and consistently as possible. The salon business used to be so dependent on walk-ins, especially for beginner stylists who have yet to build their clientele. Technology not only makes it easier for clients to find a new stylist, but also helps existing ones book their regular appointments without annoying phone calls and the ancient paper book.”
Q. How can technology help stylists stand out among their competition?
A. “It can help you show your clients how much you care about them. Consistency with communication is key. When you get a new client, how often to reach out to them? How often do you follow your clients or share their photos on social media? Do you ever send birthday emails or texts? How easy is it for them to book their next appointment with you? Did you remind them that they needed to book again to get their roots touched up? Technology simplifies all of these needs, just with the click of a button.”
Q. How should salons/stylists evaluate new technology to determine if it will be a good fit to their systems?
A. “Research takes a lot of time so finding something that is free to start with no contracts is your best bet. It will at least get your foot in the door when it comes to software—you’ll be able to discover what you like or don’t like. If you feel like the program isn’t making your life easier, then it’s not a good fit for you.”
Q. What are some interesting client behaviors surrounding scheduling online appointments that salons/stylists should be aware of?
A. “We constantly hear about stylists waking up with three more appointments being booked in the middle of the night or their entire schedule booked for the day. Most people are so busy these days, they barely have time to find a stylist, let alone call and book with them. So if you can make it easier for them, it makes it so much easier for you. We’ve also noticed that as soon as you switch to an online scheduling app, your old clients will completely thank you! They will love the ease and comfort of scheduling whenever they have five minutes to spare.”
Q. What emerging technologies do you have your eye on, and which do you think will shape the salon industry in the near future?
“The emerging trends where we can now use all of the data we gather to create custom programs for each individual is just starting to blow up. We now know just how often people are spending not only online but on their mobile devices which helps us realize how important it is to create apps and websites geared specifically to those hours spent on your phone. In the long run, the sky is the limit when we talk about technology but the real question is still: Is it helping your business? There may be so many new tech trends and ideas coming out the next few years but if they don’t help you manage your life in a more simple and easy way, what’s the point?”