Best business builder


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The Geek

Grand Master Geek
Premium Geek
Jan 9, 2003
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Leeds, UK
okokok.... we all know word of mouth is our best advert... but aside from that, what has been your most successful client building tool?

Go on... fess up... hit reply now... what are u waiting for?
Hi, as a novice tech I've done a few freebies to get my practice in -in the past. Yesterday, a work colleague handed me the phone number of one of my 'freebies' and said she'd been trying to get in touch as her nails need my desparate attention! However as soon as she heard that I wasnt doing favours she suddenly wasnt so desparate! My birthday today - the 'BIG 40'. :aww: My best friend arrived bearing gifts :hic: after a while :trashed: even she was hinting at a free overlay.I couldnt believe it because she knows how miffed I get at this kind of cheek :evil: .Thing is I brought it on myself by not listening to all the advice about not charging at least for the cost of products. I realise now and all too late :oops: that you have to start as you mean to go on.So to all new/trainee techs I say - value your time and add a fee, or forever be servicing friends....for free! ;) ........okay,okay, think I've had too much bubbly!
What was yours Mr. GrandMaster Geek ? :D
Well, I think for me it would have to be being able to do my own acrylics and never leaving home without them. People always ask "Who does your nails?" I can proudly say " I do and I would love to do yours!" 8)
My best business builder is the nail art. Anyone can paint their toes but when they have a flower or something on there..they get noticed. Then these people get hooked on those compliments. And they keep coming back and telling their friends.
Also like Ange, I always have my nails done.
I do believe that has been my best business builder.
Gotta agree with christie and ange!!! I always keep my nails done, and always keep art on them!!! The art in particular has been my biggest form of advertising!!!! People are always commenting on it and want to know who does my nails!!! They are so shocked and impressed when I anwser them, I do!!!! Me and 2 other girls that are new in the salon all got together and ran an ad on our local cable access channel for a Feb. special. It's generating quite a bit of interest and is working out quite well! I am also planning on getting an ad of some sort in the newspaper as well. I must say too that my 7 yr. old daughter has been a fantastic source of advertising for me!!! She loves getting her nails polished and art on them!!!! She thinks she can't do without!!! hehehe! I've created a monster!!!! She loves nail art and as a matter of fact has started doing nail art herself. She has her own nail art board that she has been working on. Gosh, she amazed me. She's gonna be awesome by the time she's a teenager!!! I may lose my nail art job!!!! hehehehe!
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I have to say that apart from the usual always having my own nails with extensions on and airbrushed , Nail Nights are my best builder..a bit like Ann Summers without the hard sell of a formatted party. I take photos, examples and airbrush kit with me ..they see the airbrush and a queue forms, :thumbsup: it's usually a late night with a few headaches :morn: in the morning but really good fun and a brilliant book filler !
go round local youth club .do nail art nights give a percentage to the club and keep the rest for yourself .a nice little earner :D do it on disco nights the kids love rhinestones and even just a polish. :thumbsup: .or when teenage girls have sleepovers and are pampering themselves do their nails with art and polish. catch em while their young and they may be enhancement clients in years to come :)
for me...its asking people if i can do their nails/hands/feet for free! lol!

Also, I usually ALWAYS have nail art on my fingers, and literally half of my year at college know me as "the girl with the nails".

Also...I talk nonstop about nails and people often over hear and strike up a coversation!! lol!!

Doing nails for free is not business! You need to get yourself certified ( or what ever you all do in the UK) and actually start a business!
You sure do love it.
I will do when I've left college ;) I only charge if they're people I dont know very and best friends I do for free!

It sure is a difficult one, to freebie or not to freebie, when you are just staring out you definatly need the practise and I too have fallen into the same trap with people who suddenly are not desperate when they have to pay.
I think that there are great days and not so great days, nobody books appointments and you sit there thinking may be I should throw the towel in. Then suddenly its like someone has just re connected your phone.
I must say that I never gave freebies!!! I charged everyone the same including some of my family!!! There's only a few people I don't charge and that's my mum (of course), my nan and my sister-in-law.

I've always had my nails done and when I became a tech I decided that I would still go and have my nails done as I didn't think it was fair if I stopped to do everyone else's :( When I qualified a client that went to the same salon as me decided to become a client of mine (she was a friend) as I think that she though I was going to do her nails cheaper :evil: I didn't but she never said anything and she's still a regular client of mine now 3 years later :D

As for advertising, I, like Laystar talk non-stop about nails. It must be an Essex thing :D I have given out a few cards but I always seem to meet clients in the strangest of place like the doctors surgery or standing outside another nail shop! He He!

Sorry waffling now. See I wasn't lying when I said I talk about nails non-stop!!!!!!!!!
Hey hey,
Competitions on the local radio station works for me also charity events.
I use to do coupons in the local free papers"bring a friend for half price", that sort of thing.
I use to do about 3 free sets a week when I first started and when I start a new girl in the salon I still do the same, its worked for me for the last 8 years..

Liz xx
Big up the Essex Girls!!!

I find the best source of advertising is wearing the nails myself with nail art, also word of mouth.
As for freebies....lets just say sometimes i feel like tattooing MUG on mi forehead! :oops:
Now, I'm an interesting breed. I do not want too much business because I am ultra busy with all the hats that I wear. However, when I am in a "lets get more clients" phase, I select bet. 3 - 5 "models,". I do the sets. some P&W some designs. and I have them tell the world about me. I supply them with business cards and tell them for every 3 clients they send with card (which has their name on the back=reffered by_________) I will fill them for 3. So: 3 for free. (does not include nailart, just a fill. Not a back fill) If they get up to 5 to come (this is all within a 3 week span) then I will give them a fill plus designs for free. They are my models! I snap their pix with my instamatic camera too. (gotta learn how to use this Kodak digital. ) That's how I build my business.


I think its whatever works for you and the area that you are in. When I first started my first salon I found the number one important thing was location location location because I was trying to build a high profile city centre salon. Whenever I went out I would net work all the time leaving my cards and price lists in toilets. We would leaflet drop daily. I would enter any competitions and charity events that would get me free publicity but I would never advertise as I didn't find it viable for me.
After a couple of years when I came to realise the peaks and troughs in the salon then I would target these times with special offers. One of the most successfull for any of my staff that where training was a two people for the price of one this gave the technician a chance to build there clientel and there speed.
The other thing I would say is allways be there don't go home if your not busy yes it can be soul destroying at first but it is so important you never know when a new client may walk through that door.
As for the point on not charging when I was first training a tech I would make them do 10-15 free sets to gain confidence and skill obvisously only at quiet times and you usually get them to come back for a rebalance or sell them a product and usually these are people that problably wouldn't dream of entering a nail salon as we would just go and pluck them off the street. More often than not these models ending up becoming a client.
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