There is, perhaps, no ritual more sacred than one’s monthly appointment at a favorite salon or spa. Be it a friend’s wedding or an alumni picnic, all you need to recharge yourself is a relaxing massage or a hair styling session. The only way this ‘treat yourself’ experience can go wrong is by the inattentiveness of a nail art technician or a masseuse. It is at that pivotal moment, when an employee offers exceptional customer support, that a spa or salon regains its esteem. The beauty business is, after all, a business that must engage with and delight its customers at all times. As the owner of a salon or a spa, the challenge lies in coming up with a signature customer service style that endears your guests to the brand.
PRIORITY #1: TRUSTED ADVISOR STATUS
As a beauty expert, it falls upon you to guide your clients towards a personalized mix of product or services. Recommend what you think are the best hair and beauty care options for them, but ultimately let them choose their treatment. Some clients will know exactly what they want out of a hair styling appointment; they will even bring in sample pictures for reference. Other customers are relying on your experience and expertise to deliver a ‘feel-good’ beauty solution. It is then your job, as a beauty consultant, to figure out what the customer needs while keeping in mind style trends, comfort, and affordability (in case of repeat procedures). Ask them as many questions as it takes to understand what they truly want. By adopting the role of a trusted advisor, you can recommend treatments that will help clients maximize their ‘spa day’ experience.
PRIORITY #2: BE ATTENTIVE TO CUSTOMERS’ NEEDS
A salon’s business usually consists of walk-ins as well as appointments, so there must be a reliable booking system in place. The business can provide customers the option to book their preferred slots directly on the website. Another option for web-savvy clients is appointment-setting via the salon’s Facebook page. To boost business on slow days, the salon can offer limited-time discounts on trendy treatments like essential oil facials and charcoal-based scrubs. An effective digital marketing tactic that works well is a complimentary service for a social media check-in or an online review.
While automation results in efficiency, the beauty services business depends heavily on the ‘human touch’. Team members should make it a habit to hop on the phone or the laptop to confirm all appointments with the clients. Similarly, it shows sincerity when a staff member follows-up on a styling or spa appointment, especially if for a wedding or graduation ceremony.
One meets all kinds of customers in the beauty business: the finicky, the calm, the talkative and even the slightly panicky ones. A thorough professional can work with just about anyone who walks in the front door. If there are some team members that have received less-than-stellar feedback on their people skills, it may be time to invest in a bespoke customer service training program.
PRIORITY #3: DEMONSTRATE CUSTOMER CARE
It is the attention-to-detail that sets one salon experience apart from another, starting with the reception area. No customer should be ignored upon entering the establishment. The reception staff should be able to carry on a conversation with an existing customer, while also greeting the ones who just walked in. A personalized greeting, accompanied by a warm smile, does wonders for making the client feel right at home.
Placing engaging reading material on the coffee table, laying out some light refreshments and offering a beverage while customers wait – this is what successful salons do to pamper their clientele. Your customers are the reason behind your salon’s success, so it makes sense to give them the V.I.P. treatment.
Take the initiative by getting feedback, via on-the-spot surveys. Remember not to get disheartened by any negative or critical feedback. Instead, take ownership of the complaints and work with your team to make measurable improvements. Appreciate the fact that your customers are giving your salon a second chance! Your team has the room to innovate and create special treatments for your guests, so don’t waste this golden opportunity!
The hallmark of every thriving salon is how well they treat their customers. Take time out to empower your salon team with exemplary soft skills through customized customer service training sessions. Treat your clients so well that they end up booking appointments weeks in advance!