Your ambiance is your brand. How clients feel when they are in your space contributes to how often and if, they will return, how much they will spend (or be willing to pay for your services and additional products) while they are there, and even who they tell about their experience. Beauty salons, hair salons, nail salons, spas… this is where we go to maintain our appearance and sense of self, so it’s important that these places reflect the outcome we are seeking.
To many of us, these services are not only a necessity, but also our time to slow down, relax, and take a break from thinking about the daily grind. Whether your clients are looking for a posh bumping spot, a tranquil garden escape, or classic beauty shop / barbershop, the mood you set (as well as your mad skills!) is what brings them us back. Lighting, music, temperature, and efficiency… you are in control of each element, and that control can be at your fingertips!
Reliable internet and all the bandwidth you need are the first steps to a smart salon. For me personally, nothing impacts my experience more than music. It says a lot about the type of people who work somewhere, the sort of client who will get the style they are looking for, and bottom line, my hair takes a long time and I don’t want to listen to terrible tunes.
When we’re not collecting rare vinyl, most of us are streaming music. You probably are too… Your clients don’t like it anymore than you do when buffering glitches out their favorite jam. Having a reliable and sufficiently fast internet connection will save you from the groove breaking choppy audio. Additionally, controlling your salon’s overhead music from your smartphone can save you from sitting through the fourteenth different terrible remix of Adele’s Rolling in the Deep you’ve heard today. (Not the one featuring Childish Gambino, that one nailed it.) Nonchalantly hit skip (no abandoning your client to mess with the computer at reception or stereo in the back).
Appropriate lighting is another key to a successful salon, both from a client and staff standpoint. Your staff needs to be able to see what they’re doing. Clients want to see well too–knowing how your new color looks in the rest of the world is incredibly vital—I don’t know about you, but while my color is setting, I’d rather not spend my time analyzing every pore. Smart lighting can help please everyone in this scenario. While you’re not actively working on a client, dim just the light on your client so they can relax. You can also show your client how they will look in different lighting scenarios (think sunlight, florescent lighting at work, more subdued lighting at a restaurant) and help them look their best in every illumination.
Many of us have a Nest thermostat in our homes. The same smart technology can be even smarter in your work place. With hot water, dryers, and other appliances being heavily used, the ability to adjust the temperature from your smartphone can be a comfort-saver. No time lost stepping way from your client, just use your reliable wi-fi connection and your smartphone.
Making your clients (also you and your staff!) comfortable is important, and an often overlooked piece of that is personalization. You’re at the salon every day, but your client is not. The only person your client cares about is the one in the chair right now, aka me. As they should! Make them feel important–use your salon management software to remind yourself and other staff of your client’s preferences, what they had done last time, which products they bought or are using at home. Most important of all, remember their name! Many cloud based salon management software options sync with one of your customer’s social media accounts – so you may even get to photo to be confident as you greet a new or returning client. Take a look on your smartphone before you walk over to greet them. A refresh from 6-10 weeks ago is helpful even when you’ve known the client for years.
Having the bandwidth and speed you need give you the reliability you need to create an ambiance you customers will come back for time and time again.
Guest Blogger Erin Way
Erin works on the Commercial Marketing team at TDS. She has worked in marketing and communications for over ten years, the majority of that time in the nonprofit sector. Erin holds an undergraduate degree in Political Science from the University of Wisconsin – Madison and a masters in Library Science and Information Studies from University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee. Outside of work, Erin loves the outdoors, whether it’s just yard work or something more fun like hiking or canoeing.