With the threat of COVID-19 transmission still very much present in our communities, we are seeing a shift in consumers’ needs and the emergence of three main types of clients. In the hair and beauty industry, where people would have typically put a premium on convenience, skills, the provided experience and a sense of connection and community, it seems as though that might not remain true for years to come.
That’s why companies like Foresight Factory carry out research and analyse data sets to “highlight the scenarios [businesses] need to plan for and examine what to prioritise in the new brand landscape.” You can watch their insightful series of webinars here, or listen to the recently aired Phorest FM podcast interview with CEO and co-owner, Meabh Quoirin.
Coping with stressful situations doesn’t look the same for everyone
How people react to stressful situations — and in this case, a new disease — can depend on various factors: their background, support system, financial situation, pre-existing conditions, and more.
During the COVID-19 lockdown, stress levels rose high for frontline workers, essential workers and their families, people who were at risk of severe illness and those who lost their jobs or were socially isolated from others. However, the situation was quite different for others who were fortunate enough to be healthy, work from home and have a strong support system.
And so based on people’s background, living conditions and experiences, your salon clients will typically fall into any three of the following profiles: those who find restrictions and added protocols inconvenient, those who are comfortable and even expect the added safety measures, and finally, those you won’t see back in just yet.
Type 1: “Do I really need to wear a mask?”
This type of customer has come up quite a few times in salon industry groups, causing a few headaches about how best to manage clients refusing to abide by the new set of protocols. The best thing you can do as a salon or spa owner is to publicly set clear expectations and boundaries. Update your website’s homepage to include your COVID-19 protocols, talk about them on social media, and make sure you also include disclaimers in your client communications. When people know what to expect, you leave less room for confrontation.
Type 2: “What safety protocols does your salon have in place?”
The vast majority of your clients will likely fall within this profile. Most people are excited to get back to the regular experience you provide them with, but they’re also be aware of the facts about COVID-19, understand the need for added protocols and will even expect them.
Type 3: “I’m not comfortable just yet.”
It’s important to understand and respect that some of your at-risk clients might not feel comfortable booking an appointment for a long time, even with all the precautions your salon has put in place. Some might have had to isolate themselves for weeks, have had COVID-19 themselves or have lost someone close to the disease.
Even if they don’t feel comfortable coming in, make sure you stay connected to this segment of your client base — a phone call to check-in can sometimes be enough. Small actions like this can mean the world to them and can increase their loyalty to you.
Maybe there’s more you can do too — online consultations, services that go beyond the salon (listen to this episode of Phorest FM), a special hour dedicated to this group of people, etc. There are no right or wrong answers, only what works for your business and staff! At the very least, take the time to think about it.
You are safe with Phorest
All of that being said, life beyond COVID-19 is still shaping itself, and while there is currently somewhat of a new standard, things could rapidly change again. Now is the time to look at what parts of your business can use the help of technology. Luckily, that’s where Phorest Salon Software can help you.
Watch the video below to learn more about the features helping salons around the world adapt to the current context:
The ‘Safe with Phorest’ suite of features
Online booking: Our research shows that 30% of bookings happen when salons are closed, so with this feature, you can virtually increase your bookings and revenue by 30% overnight! Plus, we make it easy for you to update safety messages via your slick, bespoke booking app.
Reminder SMS: Did you know that SMS open rates are 76% higher than email and are opened on average within four minutes rather than four days? Auto-reminders let your clients prepare for their appointment ahead of time and in turn, help you reduce no-shows by up to 99%!
Pre-send consultation forms: Pre-send client info and consultation forms, straight from your phone to theirs. In a post-lockdown era with hygiene measures in place, it couldn’t be easier or safer!
Contactless check-in: Minimise the in-salon contact points without compromising on the experience! With Phorest, you can use smart client check-in with push notifications to the right staff member for 5-star social distancing.
Touchless check-out: Use the Phorest Go app to check-out clients on mobile. The app works on iPad, iPhone and Android smartphones and tablets, so you can log in from any device, anywhere and have all of our favourite features in the palm of your hand.
Online reputation: Prompt reviews and share your clients’ experiences online! There’s nothing as powerful as hundreds of 5-star reviews on Google, Facebook and Yelp.
Get new customers: Get truly digital and let your new customers find you on Google. Online search is your new, safe alternative to walk-ins.
Right there with you, every step of the way!
Bringing your salon’s operations online doesn’t have to be scary or complicated! With over 6,000 spas and salons as customers across the globe and growing, Phorest Salon Software is the system of choice for the forward-thinking salon owners. Talk to a member of our team today to find out how we can help you both stay safe, and grow!
Got feedback? Let us know either in the comments below or tweet us @ThePhorestWord! (Pssst! We’re on Instagram too!)
Thanks for reading! #LetsGrow