6 Top Pro Tips to Running a Better Beauty Business
Have you ever wondered how old is the concept of beauty care, cosmetics, and the like? Well, let’s do a little random time travel to the one of the oldest civilizations in the world. A few thousand years ago, Egypt came into the scene as one of the most powerful countries in the world. Egypt, though ancient, has some customs still relatable today.
Just in case it’s new to you, according to the book I Wonder Why—Pyramids were built and Other Questions about Ancient Egypt, rich Egyptian women wore a lot of striking make-up. Yes, they used eyeshadows, eyeliners, lipsticks, and they totally understand what a cheek blusher is.
They also wear perfumes and wigs made of real hair. So, yeah, Egyptians were a bit beauty conscious.
If beauty care was in-demand in the ancient world, what more today, now that we are living in the digital age when everything requires professional looks, pleasing personality, and social-media-perfect-pictures?
This is the reason why in United States alone, there are 974, 000 salons that generate $40 billion sales on average every year, despite the growing challenges in the economy.
Why the Fuss over Beauty?
It’s true that physical beauty is nothing compared to a person’s beauty on the inside. However, the practical, truthful proverb that beauty comes from the heart doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t care about our outer appearance at all.
Our physical appearance can somehow reveal what we are on the inside. The way we style our hair or choose our make-up reveals our inner thoughts.
For example, in the corporate world, employers care so much about how their employees look because their appearance could impact the reputation of the company they are representing.
In the entertainment world, beauty care is a crucial thing because celebrities oftentimes make the trends chased after by the crowds. If celebrities don’t look stunning, who would care about them?
Even if you don’t identify yourself to any of these, you wouldn’t deny yourself the simple pleasure of letting yourself pampered in a spa or salon for a day. A new hairstyle or a relaxing massage could sometimes become very good stress relievers. Everybody wants to look extra gorgeous and stunning even just for a day. Who wouldn’t want a break from bad hair days?
With all these demands, wants, and needs, you can really win big if you will venture in the beauty care industry such as a salon and spa business. However, you should understand that starting a spa business or a salon requires a lot of patience, determination and hard work because you will invest a big amount of money to make your startup work.
All the Essential Stuff on how to start a salon and spa business
Because starting a business could be one of the biggest challenges, you will definitely need insights and useful tips from the right people who actually have a better knowledge and understanding in the business you want to pursue.
Coming up are the top tips you need to consider to running a better beauty business.
Layout a great business plan for salon and spa, then stick to it.
A great business plan is the backbone of every successful business. Without careful planning, any business is bound to fail. That’s why you need to think about and put on paper all the thoughts and ideas you have in mind, as well as accurate calculations of expenses the startup would cost.
The aim of a good business plan is to help you be organized as you prepare all the essential things you will need. Even a home spa business needs a business plan. With an outline of the things you need to prepare and do, you can be sure that you won’t forget anything important.
Key Elements of a business plan for spa
In writing your day spa business plan, you need to be very specific. From small to big details— everything should be included to complete the picture and for your business to materialize.
How much is the needed capital for this business and how much are you willing to invest on your salon or spa? Where would you get this capital? Should you opt for a loan, in case the money you’ve intended for your business is not enough? These are some of the questions you need to ask yourself.
You should also know the prices of all the tools, equipment, and beauty care essentials and allot the needed budget for all of these things.
It is also a must to know beforehand how much you would need for the taxes required for you to be able to operate your business. Should you rent or buy your location? Answering these questions are key points in calculating your expenses.
Every business establishment requires a proper location. It should be accessible to your potential customers, otherwise, you are only wasting your money. Find a place that doesn’t have a beauty salon or spa.
If you have competition nearby, make sure that the area isn’t saturated with a lot of other spas and salons.
Carefully make a list of your major competitions within the location of your salon or spa. Then, determine the answers to the following questions:
- What is their mission statement?
- Who are their customers?
- What are their unique selling points?
- What are their strengths and weaknesses?
Knowing the answers to these questions will help you avoid the mistakes of your competitors and exceed their unique selling points.
You’ll also know how to add more value to your services and products if you know all about what your competition is selling.
Get the right mentor, and educate yourself about the ins and outs of the business
Perhaps you want this business because it is the one that has a higher demand. Nevertheless, that is not quite as simple as that. Before opening a spa business, get a trusted mentor who will teach you everything you need to know on how to start a spa business.
The right mentor is someone who has many years of experience in the same line of job or has run a successful salon and spa for a long time.
If you have a passion for this career, it would really be a wise step to take courses in a beauty school. This article may help you understand what it means to enrol in beauty school.
You can also consult with beauty industry leaders in your community if you want to set up a spa or salon.
Most businesses materialize if the owners themselves understand the whole process of the services they offer. It is also best if the owner is completely hands-on, rather than solely relying on his employees to get the services done.
Establish a unique, well-defined brand or identity of your salon and spa business
At first glance, you would think that salons and spas are all the same. However, giving it more thorough study and analysis, you will realize that while they look somewhat similar, they may vary on their services, prices, and most importantly- their target market.
One salon may cater the needs and wants of the common people while another is exclusively established for the rich customers. Take note that each business establishment must build its own identity and create its own unique selling points (USP).
Think about this: If you are new to an industry, how would your product or service stand out if you are just a second rate, copycat of everyone else? Think of your own identity and USP because these are one of the main ingredients in establishing your popularity among your potential customers.
Don’t forget to advertise
The medium you would choose for your ads will highly depend on the budget you’ve allotted for it.
Take advantage of local digital signage to promote your salon. Use deals websites to attract new customers.
As you make your salon and spa business known, always consider E. Jerome McCarthy’s 4Ps of Marketing which consists of the product (must be desirable), promotion (must be effective), price (should be affordable), and place (should be accessible to your target and potential market).
Have exclusive tie-ups and collaborations with specific beauty brands so you get better deals on your in-store product and you get free marketing and advertising from the brand.
Ask local sellers of good products if they want shelf space in your store. This gives you free advertising on the brand’s website and social media as well, since they mention that they have stocks at your location.
If all these elements are present, your business would likely result into a marketing success.
Hire qualified staff who would make up your powerhouse
Because you can't handle this business on your own, you should hire the right people who are knowledgeable in the beauty care industry. The question now would be: Should you hire someone who has so many years of experience? According to experts, the answer is no.
Over-experienced employees tend to show off their creativity and skills, instead of considering what the customer really wants or what the customer has instructed.
Take note that your top priority is to treat your customer as the king or queen.
Meanwhile, experts suggest that you should hire employees who have only one or two years of experience in the industry and give them further training.
If an applicant doesn't have any work experience in other salons and spas, he or she should have already taken courses in a beauty school. Ask the applicant to do a demo on a particular service your spa offers.
Provide a variety of services, and establish good rapport with your customers
The best USP could be transforming your salon and spa into a one-stop place where everything that the customer wants is served. Providing all the services your client may need and want will give them so much convenience.
Having a variety of services could also be the key in coming up with an effective marketing strategy such as providing a package of services that will encourage your customers to pay more and make the most of your offers. This strategy may also help you to earn more cash faster in a day.
Maintain a friendly, pleasant atmosphere
Aside from great results, customers are also drawn to salons and spas where employees are very friendly and easy to talk with. On the other hand, even if the results are great, if you don’t treat your customers right, they may be discouraged to avail your services next time.
Bear in mind too, a salon and spa business can earn a lot through word of mouth. It is a more effective means to get more customers, than any other advertising strategies. Plus, talk about extra tips from generous customers.
ALWAYS BE OPEN FOR INQUIRIES
It is also very important that your customers could reach you anytime for their questions and feedback. Do place a yellow pages ad and create a website or a social media page for your salon and spa business.
Allow customers to engage you on Facebook, Instagram and email. Give as many possible ways to communicate with you to your target market. Make sure to check your accounts everyday and
Keep your finances on track
At the end of the day, all your efforts would still be exerted because of one purpose—you established your business because you want to earn money from a craft, service or product.
Keeping your finances on track ensures you of the health of your business. In order to keep your finances on track, keeping a daily sales inventory is a must. Also, prepare a monthly sales report and analysis, so as to determine which services and offers are mostly appealing to your customers.
You need to figure out how much your expenses are and how much revenue you are earning on average. You should also find ways to save and cut back on some of the costs of keeping up your business. For example, can you cut back on some of the products you’re not really using that much?
The more you get to save on some of the expenses, the more revenue you’ll get in return.
Do it Right and your Business will thrive
Just like any other business, a beauty business needs your time, money, and dedication.
Booming beauty businesses are also a product of hard work. Flourishing businesses are not a result of good fortune. Rather, a successful salon and spa business could be achieved by taking the right steps and using the right formula.
At first, it won’t be easy. The first days, weeks, and months are the period of adjustment. Most of the time, you will be busier than your usual days before you’ve entered this career path. But over time, you’ll learn to adjust and manage your beauty business in the most convenient and most effective way you’ll figure out through the years.
So, how do you run a beauty business?
First, make a realistic salon and spa business plan and stick to it, next get a mentor and educate yourself about the ins and outs of the business, third, establish a unique identity, fourth, create a powerhouse, fifth, provide a variety of services and great customer care, and last but certainly not the least, keep your finances always on track.
Do it right, and your beauty business will always thrive.