PocketSuite For Beauty Professionals

One of the things that we hear most from beauty professionals, including hairstylists, nail techs, and makeup artists is that managing the “business-side” of their spa or salon is actually the hardest part of being an independent business owner. Some have even gone to work for larger spas and salons because it was just too exhausting to keep everything together and make time for themselves.

That won’t be your story! We’re going to share how you can continue to “be your own boss” without all of the stress. We know that you are too blessed to be stressed.

Hair stylists, nail technicians, and makeup artists handle everything from finding new clients, scheduling, taking deposits, making your clients look fabulous, collecting final payment and a whole lot more. To better understand all of the things that beauty professionals do on a day to day basis, we interviewed some successful, hair, nail and makeup professionals who actively use PocketSuite.

They highlighted 6 common challenges:

1. Scheduling, Scheduling & Scheduling: We know that your day to day schedule is EVERYTHING. You’ve got to get butts in seats and it’s always better when a client books you ahead of time. Your time is too precious to have to wait and see who comes through each day. Besides just knowing what your schedule looks like, there are two things that literally drive beauticians crazy. Not knowing which appointment on your calendar has been paid for and which hasn’t been paid for yet. You have to go back and forth between your email, Instagram DM, Facebook Messenger, and your text messages to figure out who paid and who hasn’t. Ugh!!!

2. No Shows: The other thing that is a big pain in the #$% are “no shows”. The worst thing is for someone to take a really popular time slot like Saturday afternoon and then not show up for their appointment…no call, no text, no heads up whatsoever. Besides the fact that it is super rude and disrespectful, it costs you money. Someone else would have literally #killed for that time and you can’t replace the money that you would have made for that appointment.

3. Product Sales: Some don’t just do hair, you sell products too. Whether you are selling bundles of hair, organic shampoos &  cremes, or accessories, it’s hard to remember who bought what and to have it ready for when your client shows up for their appointment. Not to mention, having to keep track of how many products you have left on a notepad that you may not always have with you. #Help Products really boost your income, but the back and forth “remind me when did you buy it…” and “sorry, we just ran out…” messages to your clients are starting to look really unprofessional.

4. Getting New Clients: When you get a client and treat them right, they will stay with you for life! That’s, of course, if they don’t move or have some other major life change. Even though you have some loyal clients, you always need to build relationships with new clients. You should know how many heads of hair you need to do a week to hit your income goal. The typical hairstylist in the U.S. makes $3,000 a month, that means they make $750 a week. If 30% of their income comes from products, that means they will sell $225 in products a week. The rest of their income needs to come from doing hair. If the average client pays about $75, a hairstylist earning $3000 per month has to do 7 heads of hair a week to make $525 ($2,100 per month) in hair styling income. That income plus the product income of $225 per week ($900 per month) will get you to $3,000 per month. That’s basically serving 1 client a day if they work all 7 days or 2 clients a day, if they only want to work 3 and half days a week. That’s the cool thing about being “Your own boss!” You can decide how much you are going to make. Set your prices. Set your hours and do what you love for clients. To serve 7 clients a week when most clients do their hair every 2 weeks and some every month, you need to have a minimum of 14 and more likely ~30 regular clients to be able to earn $3,000 a month as a hairstylist. If you currently have 5 clients now, then getting new clients should be a top priority for you.

5. Rebooking: If you take the example above of the hairstylist who wants to make $3,000 a month, besides finding new clients she needs to make sure that every client that she serves becomes a repeat client. Otherwise, she will need to keep finding new clients in order to hit her goal. The best way to make a client a repeat client is to deliver 5 Star service. You know what they say, “If they love you, they’ll never leave you.” The second best way to make a client a repeat client is to remind them to book you again (and if necessary, give them an incentive like a discount or a free extra service to rebook you). Sometimes it isn’t enough to remind a new client to rebook you just once because they may not do it immediately or at all. You have to regularly remind them. If you are seeing 1 or 2 new clients a day, that’s a lot of people who you have to remember to remind to rebook. And it’s a royal pain because you already have so many things on your mind…

6. Tips or Gratuity: I’m sure I don’t have to say much about tips. You work hard for “your money” and really appreciate it when clients recognize that and tip you. But sometimes they forget to tip and that hurts in your heart and your purse. It’s awkward to have to remind them or ask for a tip. The whole point of a tip is that your client gives it to you because they recognize on their own how great a job you have done. If you have to remind them, it feels weird like you’re cheating or fishing for a compliment. But if you don’t remind them, then you really will miss out. The worst is when you take “the high road” and decide not to mention it when they forget to tip you and then your client gets home an hour later and sends you this message “I’ve gotten 3 compliments on my new look already. I’m so jazzed about it! You did such a great job. Thank you, thank you! Ooh, I totally forgot to give you a tip. So sorry.😭” That’s super frustrating because it is such a hassle to collect tips after the fact.

Did any of that sound familiar? If so, we totally understand. We are going to walk you through how PocketSuite slays all of the problems above. It makes it stress free for Pros like you to get booked and paid by existing clients as well as super easy to find new clients.

 

Solutions to these Pesky Problems

“Once I started serving more than 5 or 6 clients a week, keeping track of schedules, deposits, products, and messages became way too much… I knew I needed help.” – Jane S.

  • Appointment Scheduling & Calendar Booking

    • You do everything on your phone already. You may as well manage your schedule there too. PocketSuite makes it super easy for hairstylists and beauty pros. Clients can book you and pay their deposit from Instagram, Facebook, your website, or over text message, using your PocketSuite online booking link. You don’t have to send messages back and forth with your clients anymore to find a date and time that works. Your calendar syncs to PocketSuite automatically so anyone can visit your Instagram profile, your Facebook page, or your website, see when you are free, and book you. You can block out your schedule whenever you want too. So clients can only see the availability that you want them to see. You can require clients to pay a deposit when they book you or require them to put a credit card on file (just in case they cancel super late or no show).
  • Inventory Tracking

    • Products are a great way to earn more money! You should be able to sell them without any hassles. You can use PocketSuite’s “add on” product feature to offer your clients products when they are booking you online. They buy the product from your online booking site and it gets added to their appointment. So you’ll know exactly what they bought, when they bought it, and you’ll have it ready when they come in for their appointment. PocketSuite also tracks how much inventory you have left, so you are never caught by surprise. You can track sales activity and re-order before you run out.
  • Getting New Clients & Hitting Your Income Goals

    • Getting new clients isn’t easy for successful beauty pros like you because you are always in the salon serving clients. You don’t have time to go out and network and you don’t need to. All you need to do is make sure that you post all of the beautiful before and after photos of your clients on Facebook, Instagram, and tag your clients so they’ll share those pictures with friends and family.  If you do that, PocketSuite will take care of the rest. PocketSuite has 3 online marketing features that beauty pros really love. These features help them get new client leads: (1) Online Chat, (2) Suite link, & (3) Online Booking.
    • With Online chat client leads can easily chat with you anywhere online, including on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, or your website. The chat message from clients is sent directly to you via the PocketSuite app. You also get the contact information of every client lead … so you can follow up with them easily. Next, you can have your very own Suite link . A Suite link can be added to your website or Instagram and Facebook. You can use it to share your marketing links with your service information/products/other items, social media, pictures of clients that you have served. A Suite link can also be used by client leads to book and chat with you… the options are endless. Your Online booking site makes it possible for new and existing clients to schedule and buy anything from you. You can offer a free consult as a way to build your email marketing list and begin building a healthy, long term relationship with new client leads.
  • Rebooking

    • PocketSuite is the only mobile first, business management app for beauty professionals, including hair stylists, nail technicians, and makeup artists. Studies show that text messages have a 90% open rate vs. 40% or less email open rates. Most people check their phones obsessively throughout the day, so text based appointment rebooking reminders are never missed. When hairstylists use rebooking reminders, they see a 5x increase in client’s scheduling repeat appointments. Hairstylists simply set up a “Reach out to past client” smart campaign, which will automatically contact to any client who hasn’t (re)booked or paid you in a whatever time frame that you specify with a personalized text message from you focused on getting them to schedule their next appointment. The appointment rebooking reminder includes dynamic field options… in English that means they can be personalized automatically to include your client’s name, appointment date, special promotional offer, etc.
  • Tips or Gratuity

    • You shouldn’t have to worry about asking for tips from your clients. Let PocketSuite do the work for you! You can setup PocketSuite to automatically request a tip from your clients when they are booking or when they are checking out of an appointment with you. Either way, it’s not you doing the asking, it’s PocketSuite. So no need to worry about any awkwardness. Check out the dozens of other features that we offer you, your business and your clients.

PocketSuite has thousands of hair stylists, nail technicians, makeup artists who all started where you are right now. Our community of beauticians are always happy to help you ramp up, grow your client base, and achieve your income goals, both within the app and as part of our exclusive Facebook Community Group. PocketSuite’s vision is for any beauty professional to be able to work for themselves and make a great living. It starts here. It starts with you. It starts today.

Let’s get started, download PocketSuite now! Feel free to reach out with any questions (we’d love to hear from you)! Text us @ (415) 841-2300.

Podcast: Harry Josh Shares His Story on Becoming a Top Celebrity Hair Stylist





Listen to “Episode #26: Harry Josh Shares His Story on Becoming a Top Celebrity Hair Stylist” on Spreaker.

On this episode of Professional-on-the-Go, we are talking to Harry Josh who is a legend in the hairstyling, beauty, and fashion industry not only because of his tremendous skill in dressing the hair of celebrities like Jennifer Garner, Gwyneth Paltrow, Tina Fey, Ellen Pompeo, Gisele Bundchen, but also because of his super successful product line, called Harry Josh Pro Tools, including the most instagrammed hairdryer in the world, the Harry Josh Pro Dryer.

This episode is an inspiration for anyone who has a dream of working for themselves and making a good living. You will hear about:

– Harry’s journey from working at a hair salon in Vancouver to achieving his dream of being a model and celebrity hair stylist in New York City and beyond. His hunger, hustle, passion and inspiration comes through so powerfully every step of the way.
– The pivotal decisions and unobvious connections Harry made along the way that ultimately lead him to his dream.
– Harry’s lessons learned on the way to achieving his dream, including the importance of always working toward the bigger picture, even if it looks like a lateral or backwards move sometimes.
– Why Harry decided to start building his business and iconic brand of hair tools, Harry Josh Pro Tools, and how he built his brand and business model with an emphasis on quality and sustainability.
– Harry’s idea of the good life and how he lives it every day.

 

 





Why you should get your Cosmetology License – Hairdresser





Let’s say you’re a solo-preneur hairdresser out to build your business. You may be asking yourself if you need to get a license. Or let’s say you own a salon and still haven’t been licensed to do hair in your state. You may we worried about the risks associated with operating without official state approval. You may even take pride in operating under the table, believing that your life is easier when you only accept cash, Paypal or Venmo. (or any of the other plethora of money-sending apps).

There are some issues with this, however:

1. Legal risks

2. Hidden expenses

3. Missed “money making” partnerships

If you are licensed and you haven’t realized all of the benefits of being “legit”, we’ll help you connect those dots.

First, we’ll tackle why you should get your cosmetology license as a small business owner that does hair.

Then we’ll discuss the practical steps that you can take to get your license.

But first, we’ll talk about why this is important.

In this article, we’ll absolutely answer that question, so you can rest easy on your silk pillow (so you don’t mess up your beautiful hairdo!)

WHY YOU SHOULD GET YOUR COSMETOLOGY LICENSE AS A HAIRDRESSER

Globally beauty is a $382 billion a year industry and it keeps growing at an insane rate.

Hairdressers are a huge part of this industry primarily because of how popular these services are.

TWO CATEGORIES OF HAIRDRESSERS

There are several subcategories of hairdressers – in this article, we’ll make the distinction by breaking up the industry into two main parts – those that do braiding/weaves and those that use chemicals.

The main reason we’re separating folks into these two categories is because those doing hair braiding/weaves typically don’t need a license. On the other hand, those using chemicals (to do perms, for example) have to get a license to operate legally.

If you are doing braiding or weaves, you don’t need a license because there are typically no chemicals used.

On the other hand, if you’re using harsh chemicals (or even some eco-friendly alternatives) to deliver services like coloring, dying, and some forms of curling and straightening, you are most certainly a candidate for getting your cosmetology license and going all the way with your salon services.

Speaking of harsh chemicals, the Women’s Voices Organization created a very useful list of chemicals to avoid when you’re working with clients, as well as chemicals to be wary of.

If I were you, I would pay close attention to this list and try to avoid as much contact with these chemicals as possible!

At the very least, wear eye and mouth protection to limit your exposure when dealing with these harsh substances.

But I digress… let’s discuss the specific reasons why getting your cosmetology license is especially important for hairdressers.

The first is the legal ramifications of not being licensed.

LEGAL RAMIFICATIONS

In just one year, the Better Business Bureau received more than 2,400 complaints about hair stylists about everything, “from bad cuts to severe scalp burns.”

Apparently, the possibility of chemical burns is a serious and ever-present threat when subjecting yourself to an unlicensed hairdresser.

Not only that, but under-the-table salons use super-glue instead of proper bonding solution to apply hair extensions, further damaging their clients’ hair and their reputation as well.

Here’s what Anthony Civitano of the Hair Dresser Institute had to say about unlicensed cosmetologists, specifically hairdressers:

“When you get into chemical work, or your working with sheers, sharp instruments around somebody else’s body, it’s really very important that you have the proper training and dexterity.

Unlicensed salons or solo-preneur hairdressers can easily get a $500 citation for operating under the table – how’s that for motivation to get licensed!

OPPORTUNITY COST

If you are unlicensed, you’re missing out on opportunities to work with payment providers that can help you with online booking, accepting credit cards, and paying your salon team (if you have a salon).

Most payment providers will want to see proof that you are operating with a license, as this protects them from potential chargebacks from unhappy clients with damaged hair who are not happy campers.

You may also be turned away for emergency funding (should your business require it) in the event of a downturn, an economic crash, or another calamity that may leave you penniless and force you to close up shop and run to the safe harbor of a full time day job.

Wouldn’t that be a shame! If you need money for your business and your passion, it’s always good to have options in case you need to use them.

So another reason for getting licensed is that it opens up your business to a whole new world where you can accept credit cards, put an online booking form on your Instagram, and other perks.

Additionally, typical costs of hairstyling services for licensed versus unlicensed pros range from 3-4 times, so you’re leveling your business up to another tier of additional income by getting licensed.

PARTNERSHIPS

There are many professional organizations, such as the Professional Beauty Association (or PBA for short), that require you to be licensed in order to join. It is an exclusive group that also gives you access to perks and business opportunities.

One of the business opportunities that is very popular at the moment is becoming a hair product reseller.

The way this works is, you receive the product and get a white-labeled, personalized website built for you. All you need to do is find the clients and sell them the products, and you get a generous cut of the profits.

However, being unlicensed prevents you from taking advantage of opportunities like this.

So with no license, there’s less income for your business and less money in your pocket at the end of the day.

When you get your license, you’re opening up your business to new types of clients and diversifying your income (such as being a product reseller) so that you can grow your bottom line and build on your current success.

HOW TO GET LICENSED AS A HAIRDRESSER

Finally, we arrive at the practical steps that you can follow to get this accomplished and start to sleep better at night.

The first step would be to check with your state licensing board as every state is different.

Here are the education, exam, and other requirements necessary to get licensed, according to Study.com:

Required Education

Cosmetology training program at a school or through an apprenticeship.

Exam Requirements

Written tests on theory and procedures, practical demonstrations of skills in eight areas and written tests on state regulations.

Other Requirements

Minimum age requirement, HIV/AIDS training (specifics vary by state).

The next step is to find a cosmetology school that offers programs for hairdressers.

Here are some frequently asked questions that explain how to find a school and goes into detail on the requirements and process for getting licensed.

You can also find more information here on a state-by-state basis.

Once you’ve completed school and graduated (many of these you can do online, although the exam may be in person), you can go to your state licensing website to apply for a license.

Here’s what California’s Board of Barbering and Cosmetology website looks like (you would go here to apply for your license if you lived in California, but like I said it varies by state, so find your state’s website through Google):

In this example, you would click on ‘Breeze’ on the bottom left and then follow the prompts to get your license.

And there you have it – the main reasons you should get your license, as well as how to do it.

I hope this article has clarified why you should get your cosmetology license as a hairdresser.

Now go out there and make the world beautiful, one hairstyle at a time!

If you haven’t already, you can try PocketSuite for free to manage your hairdressing clients, accept deposits and payments online, process credit cards in person using their built in credit card scanner, manage your bookings online and from Instagram & Facebook, sell products, and practically everything else you’d want to do in your business. So you can do your job “making your clients deliriously happy” – worry free! 🙂

Like this article? You’ll love our guide on how to generate leads for service businesses in 2020, and of course our Frustrations with Square article!