Keep your salons clients when a hair stylist leaves!

Most hairdressing salon owners have experienced that sinking feeling when a hair stylist “asks for a word” and then get an envelope containing their resignation.

The impact on your salon performance will vary depending on the size of their clientele, whether their clients are loyal to them and what influence they have over your salon team?

Are they moving to a hair salon nearby or perhaps opening their own business? In which case will they poach any of your stylists?

Up till this point your soon to be ex-stylist has been in control. Spending time “friending” your salon clients on Facebook and whispering their plans. It can sometimes feel that you are the only person to not know and it’s your salon!

Creating a “what if” or contingency plan will give you a series of tasks to implement as soon as you know the team member is leaving.

Some team members generate more sales than others so your plan will benefit from more than one direction. It can seem like a disaster when one hair stylists leaves and with another less so, or can even a bit of a blessing. The strategy you adopt will reflect this.

What we know is that this is going to happen, we just don’t know when. Put your plan together in advance and then when you do receive the news that a member of your salon team is moving on you know what to do.

Create a checklist:

How many of your salons’ clients are likely to follow?

Be realistic. If this team member is well liked, busy and established they will have influence over their clients and get many of their clients to follow them.

Therefore to get the attention of these clients you will need to be generous to grab their attention. If your stylist is less established you can afford to offer less incentives.

Ask yourself, “If I were my stylists client what would incentivise me to stay?”

A salon client’s true value comes from their lifetime value. It may be necessary to incentivise in the short term to keep their long term business.

The most appropriate stylist to look after your client will probably not be the most available. Ensure that your client gets an experience equal or improved than they have become accustomed to.

Example Stylist Leaving Contingency Plan.

Timeline

Notice Period – it can be very inconvenient but the busier your stylist is the more prudent to ask to leave immediately.

Day 1. The day your stylist leaves.

1st Contact – contact clients booked with the stylist leaving immediately and offer a small incentive for them to visit with a recommended alternative stylist.

2nd Contact – contact stylists regular clients who have visited during the last 3 months and have no future booking. Offer a small incentive with your most suitable stylist.

Day 28. 4 weeks after your stylist leaves

3rd Contact – after 4 weeks contact your ex-stylists clients who have last visited between 1 and 4 months ago and no future booking. At this point increase your offer or incentive to make it a little more attractive to them.

Day 60 – 2 months after your stylist left

4th Contact – after 2 months contact clients who have last visited between 2 and 5 months ago and no future booking. Make your offer more attractive. Many of these clients previously loyal to your salon business are now spending money elsewhere.

Day 90 – 3 months after your stylist moved on

5th Contact – after 3 months contact clients who have last visited between 3 and 6 months ago and have no future booking. You have pretty much lost these clients so to get their attention be as generous as you dare even if it means looking after them for free! Just remember if you do roll out the red carpet you want them to stay.

This marketing strategy is well proven and will ensure your salon business retains the most possible clients when a hair stylist moves on.

As a salon owner we all hope that we do not need this particular tool. However it’s better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it. At Salon Advantage Salon Software we have built a Team Leaver package into our Salon Advantage Pro Marketing suite. All of the content, filters and schedules are set and waiting for when you need them. When you get that letter simply activate the campaigns and get on with your day in the knowledge that the right clients are being contacted at the right time with the right offer.

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