We often get so caught up in the routine of our business that we forget how great of an impact we can have on our clients. Many come to us not simply to get their hair cut and colored, but for the experience that we create for them. This is particularly so for that client who makes a special trip to see you, perhaps from somewhere far away. In my case, that special client is the woman who finally decides to splurge on her appearance after many years of wishing that she looked a certain way. Perhaps she listens to my radio show on Sirius, has read about me in magazines, or just loved what I did with her friendâ€™s hair. To her, this is a very unique experience and her expectations are very high. In some instances she has saved up to see me and has come from a different part of NY State or the country. She expects her visit to my salon to be life-changing.
This is a lot to live up to, and I find these situations to be the most rewarding. A few weeks ago, a woman named Deborah came to see me from Albany, NY. She was in her 50s and had never been to an upscale NYC salon, but has listened to my radio show for some time. After being single for a long time, Deborah recently met someone special, and decided that it was time to make a change in how she looks. She told me that she â€œwanted to look as young as she feels.â€ So she made an appointment to see me and planned a weekend trip to NYC with her boyfriend.
Deborah’s experience began over the phone when scheduling the appointment. Our front desk representative took the time to walk her through how the day was likely to go, answering her questions and listening to what she had in mind. Itâ€™s important to always remember that your front desk people should not just be â€œorder takersâ€ and are not just there to schedule appointments. They are there to communicate with the client, suggest appropriate services and recommend the right people to do so. When Deborah arrived for her appointment, she was immediately made to feel welcome. She was so excited when she sat in my chair (and even said how important it was for her to be in my chair), she wanted to leave everything up to my judgment. We were formulating a new color and building a different shape haircut. Her only other request: have her hair cut on the shorter side so she could get some longevity out of the cut.
I felt that her hair was too dark for her complexion and did not have enough shape, so I lightened the base, added some highlights and cut it into a lightly layered bob with a side-swept bang. I then taught her how to properly care for her hair at home: walked her through a blow dry lesson, demonstrated how to layer products and style her own hair, explained how to properly shampoo, and condition and to use treatments weekly. She was very appreciative and said that no one has ever taught her before how to recreate the salon look at home. I then gave Deborah her Wella formula for her base color, and suggested that she come to me for highlights so she can stretch the time between trips to NYC.
Because Deborah was a destination client, I wasnâ€™t sure if I would see her again, so I prepared her as much as possible to maintain at home what I had created. After she left, however, I saw that she pre-booked her next appointment with me for â€œthe worksâ€ in 12 weeks. It occurred to me once again that by giving away my â€œsecrets,â€ I empowered a client. Empowerment builds loyalty, and loyalty builds trust.
Eva Scrivo is a highly acclaimed hair and makeup artist, host of Beauty Talk on Sirius Satellite Radio, television personality, and entrepreneur who owns two eponymous NYC salons. Through her experience, insight, range of expertise, and penchant for teaching, she has come to be regarded as one of the countryâ€™s premier beauty experts. Equally strong in hair cutting, coloring and makeup, Eva also has a thorough knowledge of skin care, nutrition, wellness and fashion. She has recently become the spokesperson for Wella Professionals and is presently working on her first beauty book to be published by Atria Books, a division of Simon & Schuster. To view additional tips from Eva visit: www.evasbeautyblog.com