Every single salon and spa business has been impacted by the Coronavirus. Never in our lifetime have we experienced an extraordinary time such as this that has affected so many people and businesses on a global scale.
For a lot of businesses, the outlook is bleak with many already sadly folding despite the government’s various financial schemes and bailouts. We are facing massive challenges and must learn to adapt and steer our salon businesses through the quagmire of new rules and regulations.
Now is the time to show leadership, to plan and begin the bounce back to a profitable business. Keeping a positive attitude and mindset in these uncertain times will help you succeed.
Remaining calm and evaluating the situation with facts, the correct information and a level head is key and important at this vital time. (click here for the latest government support packages )
We all suddenly have more time on our hands. So let’s make the most of it and work hard at building the best salon business ready for re-opening!
Take back control and start planning your finances and cash flow is the number priority for you right now. What do you need to live on each month? What does your business need each month to stay afloat? Check your important Direct Debits. Do you need the government backed interruption loan or an overdraft to manage your cash flow? (check out the lenders for the business interruption loans here) Speak to your bank to get all the relevant information and find a solution. Make plans for what you will need for up to 4 months of closure: If you have furloughed your staff then you will need to have the money to pay their monthly wage entitlement. You will then receive 80% back into your account that you can reuse for the next monthly payments.(if HMRC can set this system up quickly?)(back dated to the 1st march 2020)
- Plan A. One month closed
- Plan B. 2 months closed
- Plan C. 3 months closed
- Plan D. 4 months closed
Take the money from the government schemes and get the money required to keep your business and your lifestyle afloat.(even though we all have to make sacrifices and down size our current lifestyles) Once you have this in place you then can start planning and taking control of your business again.
BOOST extra cash flow into your salon/spa business by offering gift cards or adding credit to client accounts during the lockdown so they can redeem once you reopen. If you have an e-commerce site and sell products on-line, then during the lockdown would be a great time to promote and boost your product sales.
One area that many salon owners have made their first mistake in during this crisis is with their suppliers. Some salon owners are reacting without careful thought to the devastating news that their business is closed and automatically cancelling direct debits without contacting suppliers first. Remember, successful business is about building relationships not just with your customers but your suppliers as well. Perhaps your suppliers can help with a payment plan as they too are being affected and have bills to pay and families to support.
Most salons will shut up shop, stop any marketing, cancel direct debits and wait until this is over. If that is what most business owners are doing, it doesn’t mean you have to follow suit. Stand out! Do more marketing and keep your business in the hearts and minds of your customers, so when you do re-open they will think of you first.
Send emails with offers they can use at the time of your re-opening. Offer solutions that your customers might be having at the moment. Create useful video content and demonstrations that prove to your customers you are the experts they should be asking help from.
Use this time to build your social media following with fun and informative posts. Set your customers challenges and offer prizes, make your channel a place they want to visit to see what’s new.
Keep up regular communication with your team. Get them involved in video content creation. Get ideas from them for new ways of interacting with customers. Make them feel that they are still an important part of your team, of your business and vital to its continued success. Set them challenges to do at home to keep their skills sharp. Set mini competitions, have your social media followers vote on their favourite and give the winner an award. Find online courses you would like them to take and complete. Let them know they haven’t been forgotten in this uncertain time.
Stay educated and learn new marketing and business tools. Tidy up your Google My Business pages, Linkedin pages, Facebook business manager, messenger. Does your website need a new revamp or any changes? Get more 5 star reviews for social proof that will set you apart from your competitors. Look at your point of sale system and see what your best and worst selling products and services were. Do they need changing?
We are all going to be very busy when we re-open but there’s no denying that things have changed perhaps forever in terms of customers wanting reassurances on salon cleanliness.
They will want to know and visibly see that we are taking precautions on keeping our salons clean and free from bugs and viruses.
It wont be a time to squeeze clients in, ramming and packing them in through the doors, even though their will be a high demand at the beginning. It will be about creating a new ‘concierge’ experience and making time for your guest – one at a time. The less physical touch points and different people your customers experience the better.
- One stylist to one customer throughout the whole journey.
- More space between chairs.
- Keeping stations and tools thoroughly clean for every guest.
- Opening longer hours from earlier in the morning to late at night.
The salons and spas that create these new experiences will be the ones that stand out from the crowd and can position themselves differently for more exposure and the lion share of customers.
Now is a great time to do MORE than you have ever done on your marketing and business strategy to help make sure your re-opening goes off with a bang!
Stay safe, be calm, be measured, make good choices and come back better and stronger.
PS: Take some time for yourself and your family as well. You need to recharge and have balance in your life.
PPS: If you need guidance, coaching and ways to grow your salon business once this is over then get in contact today. Click here