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Beautygirl1977

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I think everywhere is the same just now :( there is so much competition now too and I've only been in the business for 2 years.
Can I ask why/how you have lost all your clients to this girl?
X
 

Macoroni

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Had the same happen to me nine years ago when my senior therapist left after two years and even though she went to a spa none if her regular clients returned due to her bad mouthing the salon. It was a nightmare compounded by me having a baby who I had to return to work when he was two weeks old. It was a dreadful time I ended up moving salons incurring more debt and eventually selling as I cdnt see a way forward and I've been back in my salon 30 months now and I have never known it so quiet my dad died in sept my eye was off my business for a few weeks but then I realised we were completely dead luckily I have only self employed therapists and myself but it is so stressful. We have also had two salons open in our town last month and two in five mile radius and when you consider beauty is not smthg everyone has there is definitely less clients to go round esp at this time of year. I liked when you said I tell my staff things will pick up and sometimes I tell myself that too as its only me ! Anyway good luck it's horrible when a staff member is duplicitous and takes a lot to get over I found xxxx
 

Catdeluxe

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I agree November has been a funny month, and I've had a few very regular and loyal clients who've cancelled appointments due to them being short of money. They've booked in just before Christmas for their Christmas nails etc but this has left me without these regulars in November.

Maybe with less cash to go around, people are being much more careful to ensure they can afford Christmas and cutting back in the run up.

Good luck and keep your chin up xx
 

MrsHBeauty

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Our re-booking rate is shockingly low, we've had a quiet month, worryingly quiet. I'm doing the book keeping tomorrow so ill see just how bad it was. We don't have much booked for December which again is worrying. My beauty salon has been open a year now so not long, we've had such a busy May-October it's a shock to go quiet again. I employ 2 part time therapists and a full time receptionist (business admin apprentice). I am personally really struggling of money as I'm still not taking a wage :/ I will not quit but the stress is a killer, my stomach is in knots just thinking about it. I say it'll pick up soon aswell, but I'm doubting myself :-/

How can I encourage my therapists to re-book?

I am going to run a promotion in dec - re-book your treatment for January and receive a discount or something free. Hopefully this will be away to get clients to re-book.
 

WaxGirl

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What a worry for you.
I consider myself to be pretty good at marketing and advertising, but despite my best efforts I'm much quieter this year than last. It's great in one respect because I can use the time on the distribution side of things, but on the other it's the salon that pays our mortgage, so I need to keep busy!
There are a few thing you can do I think. You can alter the opening hours of the salon a little. So if you're open 6 days a week you could squeeze all your clients into 5 days.
One of my friends has just told her staff that they can either drop a day or be made redundant. It's a tough choice but if she doesn't do it she'll go out of business, and her staff need to know that. By dropping a day you'll save electricity etc, and it'll make the remaining days busy and vibrant. You could use the day off to do networking, marketing, admin, planning, training etc.
You could also reduce the hours each day - if you're open 9 - 6 you could make it 10 - 5 on some days and have just one late night. Another friend has just shifted her hours on a couple. She used to be open 10 till 6 and now she's open 11 - 7 and she's picking up the after work people she used to have to turn away.
With regard to the other girl, it's too easy to be rocked by such unscrupulous people when it's quiet. Every time you worry that it's her you're giving her more power. Concentrate on thinking positively. If you haven't read The Secret, now's the time!
Remember that you're in business to stay in business, not to go under. Do whatever it is you need to do to protect it. If that means letting people go, or making changes to your hours, then do it. Things WILL pick up, but huge sacrifices will have to be made until they do.

lynne - i just private messaged tash to read the secret!!! lols and then started reading replies - love it - i got very quick results with it

business is going great, things are fabulous

tash - dont panic, take on board some of the great suggestions offered here

you're a bright business woman, you have the capacities to power yourself through this challeging time
 

WaxGirl

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Our re-booking rate is shockingly low, we've had a quiet month, worryingly quiet. I'm doing the book keeping tomorrow so ill see just how bad it was. We don't have much booked for December which again is worrying. My beauty salon has been open a year now so not long, we've had such a busy May-October it's a shock to go quiet again. I employ 2 part time therapists and a full time receptionist (business admin apprentice). I am personally really struggling of money as I'm still not taking a wage :/ I will not quit but the stress is a killer, my stomach is in knots just thinking about it. I say it'll pick up soon aswell, but I'm doubting myself :-/

How can I encourage my therapists to re-book?

I am going to run a promotion in dec - re-book your treatment for January and receive a discount or something free. Hopefully this will be away to get clients to re-book.

Just get them during treatments to remind customers of the importance of upkeep and the fact that you are busy - ie do the ground work during the treatment to have customer prepared for an easy re book

when paying - nice and friendly ask 'will i pop you in the diary for your next appointment?', usually works
 

Pinkbunny28

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lynne - i just private messaged tash to read the secret!!! lols and then started reading replies - love it - i got very quick results with it

business is going great, things are fabulous

tash - dont panic, take on board some of the great suggestions offered here

you're a bright business woman, you have the capacities to power yourself through this challeging time

Can you pm me too please? I hate not knowing secrets :( lol x
 

crystaltash

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Thank you all for your wonderful replies. So encouraging and as always, advice that's worth it's weight in gold.
I have ordered 'The Secret' and I am so looking forward to reading it. :)
I really do just have to stay positive and I know I WILL pull through this and come out the other side. Christmas just has to be busier and I am going to take a look at my outgoings and see how I can cut back a bit.
Thanks again guys. I have to try and power through the sadness and feelings of hurt and betrayal and concentrate on my business again. It started off with just me, so I know I can do it. :) xxx
 

vitality

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Sorry to hear this. I spoke to a hair salon owner from comber last week who has been in business for over 30 years and is the quietest she's ever been, she told me several businesses have closed down in her street alone. So it shows you are not the only one struggling.

I am a great believer in changing things if they are not working. A lot of people hold on to what has worked on the past but sometimes you need to re-evaluate and move on with the times.

Have you considered it may be the area? Is unemployment rate high? Has the town kept up to date or gone downhill with this economic climate? Do your previous clients still live there?

Comber is a small town, demographics around 9000 people. Do you only market to people in Comber or have you tried reaching out to potential clients in bigger surrounding areas such as Newtownards or Bangor?
If you have not considered reaching out to these customers a good way for some businesses is to go down the Living Social, KGB etc. route. If you work it out strategically you can make money with these deals. Some deal chasers will not return but from my experience it's an easy way to get new customers in, make a bit of money and gain loyal customers if you exceed their expectations.

Do you feel you or your staff could improve on any of your treatments? After all if you do everything else right but the treatment quality isn't matching the premium price (No matter how good your products are) you will not be busy. Nails for example are very popular but to be honest there are few good nail technicians in County Down.

What is your unique selling point? If you don't have one it would be advisable to think of one and build your brand awareness.

Is your shop window inviting? Are there posters with your brands or deals on the window or a price-list? It doesn't have to look tacky/messy if done right.

Do you know of any busy beauty salons in your area? You could maybe check them out to find out why.

Keep marketing even when you're busy. Your data-base is so important, you can contact clients who haven't been there for a while with a special offer or simply reminding them that you are there. Track their demographic patterns and preferences. It's far easier to retain clients than get new ones. You could also carry out qualitative and quantitative research to get an idea of anything that might be worth changing/investing in.

You could organise a Christmas event in your salon with drinks and nibbles, make-up demonstrations, free expert skin analysis, discounted gift vouchers and make up your own gift sets for people to buy as presents. It will create a buzz and get people talking about your business; getting your name out there whilst making a but of money. It will also be a great way to build a rapport with potential customers by introducing yourself and mingling with them.

As other people have stated there is a lot of competition despite being in the worst recession for 80 years. Always think of ways to improve even starting from the simplest things such as greeting yourself, offering every client a drink, hanging their coat up, going the extra mile and making sure staff look presentable. It sounds so simple but it's shocking how many customer orientated businesses lack basic customer care.

I wouldn't put your energy into worrying about your ex-employee, just seek to be the best you can be and results will follow.
 

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