The Salon Owners Podcast: Phorest FM Episode 83 (w/ Pamela Laird)

phorest fm episode 83

Welcome to the Salon Owner’s Podcast, Phorest FM Episode 83. Co-hosted by Killian Vigna and Zoé Bélisle-Springer, Phorest FM is a weekly show that puts forth a mix of interviews with industry thought-leaders, salon/spa marketing tips, company insights and information on attending Phorest Academy webinars. Phorest FM is produced every Monday morning for your enjoyment with a cup of coffee on your day off.

Phorest FM Episode 83

For anyone running a salon or spa, one of your main objectives is figuring out how to build your client base. Obviously, more clients means more business. But what if it wasn’t just about building a client base, but more about building the right client base? In this episode of Phorest FM, salon owner, hairdresser & speaker Pamela Laird discusses the getting rid of the Bettys and attracting more of the Bernies. If your salon/spa is struggling with attracting the right type of clients, then this episode is for you!

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Transcript

Killian Vigna: Welcome to the Phorest FM podcast episode 83. I’m Killian Vigna.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: And I’m Zoe Belisle-Springer. This week on the show we’re asking who’s your Bernie. Pamela Laird of Fin & Co. Hair joins us on Phorest FM to share her story about turning her nightmare customer Betty, into her dream customer Bernie.

Killian Vigna: So, grab yourself a cup of coffee, sit back, relax, and join us weekly for all your salon’s business and marketing needs. Good morning, Zoe.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Good morning, Killian. How are things?

Killian Vigna: I’m good now. So busy week for you. You’re in another different country again this week, aren’t you?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yes, again. I returned to the U.S. it’s fine, we’re-

Killian Vigna: Doing a lot of traveling around lately. So where are we now?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Currently in Philadelphia in our Philadelphia office and yeah, it’s been a busy week, but a really cool experience.

Killian Vigna: Cool. So really looking forward to this episode. This is one that we actually came across there a couple of weeks ago and we’re kind of delighted to finally get it scheduled. So pretty much just as we mentioned in the introduction, this week we’re focusing on how to find your Bernie. So basically, how do we ditch the clients we don’t want, which is our Bettys, and attract the clients we do want, the Bernies. This topic is the brainchild of Pamela Laird, who attributes the success of her hair salon business Fin & Co. Hair, by asking themselves which is our perfect client, or who is our perfect client. So it’s something that every salon owner can only dream of finding out. So welcome to the show, Pamela!

Pamela Laird: Hi, hi guys. How are you doing?

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Great, great. How are you?

Pamela Laird: Yeah, I’m good. I’m fine, thanks. It’s all good.

Killian Vigna: This is weird. This is the first time that we’ve ever done a podcast where all three of us can actually see each other on a webcam, so it’s great because it’s like you’re actually in the room. We usually do, well, myself and Zoe, do a live feed of the video, and then we’re just looking at a blank screen, so it’s great to actually essentially have you in the room here today!

Pamela Laird: Yeah, extremely good and three different countries and we’re all here together. It’s fabulous.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, three different countries all into one area.

Pamela Laird: Yeah, it’s good.

Killian Vigna: So, Pamela, just I suppose, before we even get too far into this, without kicking it off, do you want to tell our audience a bit about yourself and a bit about your own salon?

Pamela Laird: Okay, so, yep. I’m Pamela, I live in a small east coast town in Scotland called Carnoustie. I’ve owned my own salon for around about 13 years, in fact I think it’s 13 years this Sunday. I’ve been hairdressing for over 30 years now. I love the industry, I’m really passionate about what we do. I’ve gone from a YTS, which is like an apprenticeship nowadays, I’ve grown, I’ve developed, I went through being a stylist, a senior stylist, a trainer.

I’d always dreamed of maybe owning my own salon or managing a team, however the boss that I had at the time was, “No, no, that’s not for you. That’s really not your bag. You should be training. You should be doing XY and Z.” I was like, “No, no, no, that’s not for me. I’m going to have my own salon,” which in hindsight, I could see why she didn’t think that this would be the right thing for me, ’cause it’s not as easy as I obviously thought. How hard could it be? Let’s just open a salon and they will come. But as many salon owners know, no. It’s not that simple.  But the journey I’ve been on has taken me to, yep, 13 years of running my own salon and it’s been a very hilly journey I will say, yes. Many ups and downs.

Killian Vigna: So it’s a classic case of the grass is greener on the other side. “You’ve got a salon, why can’t I have my own salon?”

Pamela Laird: Pretty much. Look at all that money that you must be making. I want to do that too. However, yeah, you soon realise that all that money isn’t really yours. It’s not as easy as just picking up your scissors and cutting hair. There’s a lot more goes on in running a salon.

Killian Vigna: So you had no real kind of business skill set at this stage, did you? Did you just kind of up and move over or did you get yourself enrolled in any courses or anything?

Pamela Laird: Well, so what I did to begin with was I rented a chair in our salon first. I left, it was a big salon that I worked in, and I left the security of that to go and just rent a chair, and become self-employed. So I was kind of dipping my toe in, but then for me that wasn’t enough. I wanted my own team around me and stuff like that. So I just basically, within six weeks decided there’s a property, I’m going to open a salon, and then like that, yeah, how hard could it be. From there, I’d say the first five years of that were really tough. You know, I was just like come into to work, do what you want, everything’s fine.

But really what people need is somebody to say, “Look, here are the rules, here’s what you’re doing, here’s how hard you have to work here,” and things like that, and have boundaries, have targets, have systems in place. However, for five years yet, no, I didn’t have a clue about what I was doing.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: At the moment, how big would the salon be? How many staff do you have?

Pamela Laird: So there’s seven of us altogether. There are five stylists, including myself, and then I have a trainee, and I also have Jenna, who I call my admin angel because as with many hairdressers, we don’t realise how much of the admin side there is. I have Jenna who runs the background stuff for me, which makes my job a lot, lot easier.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, of course.

Pamela Laird: My organizer, yeah.

Killian Vigna: How long did it take you to get up to a team of seven, including yourself?

I would say we were sitting at a team of seven around about the five to six year mark, seven years. However, I have recently lost a couple of stylists. One of them went on to become a matrix educator, which is an amazing job where I couldn’t have offered her the traveling and that, that she does. One of my senior stylists just left to go to Australia, so that was a really, that was heart wrenching. That was just like last month, that was really tough. The numbers have kind of gone up and down.

As with what we’ll speak about with finding your perfect clients, it’s also finding your perfect team. Some of them I’ve grown myself, a couple of them came from college and we developed them from there, but they were older. They were mature students so they already knew hairdressing was really for them, and they were really determined, really focused. The other ones are ones that have come at us as a trainee and then we’ve, as they say, we’ve grown them ourselves. I think seven, eight, is a nice number ’cause you can keep in touch with them all and you can know them really well.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, exactly. It’s still kind of close enough group, close knit.

Pamela Laird: Yeah.

Killian Vigna: On the other side of running a salon, you’ve got yourself into a bit of public speaking.

Pamela Laird: I know, I know! I need to be careful what I wish for, because I’m part of a CMA group, Content Marketing Academy, and I’ve been a part of that for about three or four years now. There’s a conference run every year, it’s a two-day conference where there’s all these really well known speakers and I just so happen to say, “Oh, I’d really like to speak! One my goals is to speak on your stage,” which of course, I was then given that opportunity, which is way out of what was my comfort zone.

I’m happy to say now that I feel quite comfortable on a stage, I really enjoy it, but again, the preparation that goes into a 10-minute talk was way more than I would ever have imagined, you know, thinking that you can just stand up there, wing it, and go for it, is not how it really is. There is an art to public speaking, but I do enjoy it. I really, really enjoy it. Yeah, it’s good fun.

Killian Vigna: I’m laughing here because as you’re talking about this, your first public speaking, Zoe also just offered her first gig last night.

Pamela Laird: Yeah, go Zoe!

Killian Vigna: I think [inaudible 00:08:14] talking about you.

Pamela Laird: I could give you some tips, I could give you some tips.

Killian Vigna: This is very [inaudible 00:08:21] at the moment, yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: I will take them all, I will take them all, yeah.

Pamela Laird: So are you going to do it then, Zoe? Have you committed to-

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, well I applied for it and got through to Seattle Interactive in October, so I still have a bit of time to prep.

Pamela Laird: Wow, yeah.

Killian Vigna: Did you have long to prep for your own one, did you? ‘Cause it’s a really good topic, so was this something that you were kind of, you already were well familiar, you knew just, so how to write, this was what you were going to talk about or did you have to kind of have to dig deep and go, what will I talk about?

Pamela Laird: I did what like… I mean, you get that usual, you know, the impostor syndrome of well, what do I know that I can share with people, that they’re not already going to know about, because this is what we do anyway. So I had a few different ideas. I have an amazing team, I could speak about how to build a good team around you. We do a lot of our own training, so I’m starting to do a 12 week training program from college to on the floor, you know, that sort of thing. But customers are something that no matter what industry you’re in, you’re looking for these perfect customers.

Being part of a group, I have an accountability group, and through speaking to them, it made perfect sense that I would speak about how to find your perfect customers, ’cause we’ve all had really awful, awful customers, and the ones that we really don’t want to work with. It just made sense. A room full of… It wasn’t a room full of hairdressers, there was designers, there’s accountants, there’s marketers, there’s all sorts going on in that room. So again, it was trying to find something for the whole audience and not just thinking about my own industry.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: If we do actually look in the industry and such, and your situation particularly, how or when was the time where you thought, right, this has to stop? I’m trying to attract everyone and I need to focus on one client. How did that happen?

Pamela Laird: I think it comes over time. You have these people come into your shop and they ask you questions and you’re just like, really? Why did you walk in here? You know, the usual one is, why do you charge so much money. So it comes over time. There’s maybe one client that annoys you a little bit, and they’re a bit cheap so you keep your prices down, you maybe have dry cuts, we… I’ll talk about this, we took dry cuts totally off the menu because it was cheapening into our services and when I look at my team, and we train all the time, we train once a month, we shut the salon and do training, I spend a lot of money putting outsourcing, bringing people in, and building up their talents and their abilities, for then having someone come in and ask, “Well, why are you charging X amount when I can get it done around the corner for half the price?”

These things started to play on my mind of well, you really don’t respect what we’re doing as a salon. You obviously don’t understand how we teach and train. You can’t see the difference between a four pound fifty haircut and a thirty-five pound hair cut. For me it was things like, I had also had the benefit of working in like, big salon that charged a lot, a lot of money with higher-end clients and I was just like, “you just don’t get what we’re trying to do here.”

Also, when they come in, they suck the life out of you. You look at the book, they’re booked in, you’re thinking, “oh no, please, please, please, cancel.” In the back of your head you’re thinking, “I don’t care if I lose your money. Just cancel that appointment.” It’s that person that they suck the life out of you really to be fair and you watch the other members of the team and they’re maybe looking, thinking “oh no, I’ve got,” we’ll call her Betty, we always call her Betty. “We’ve got Betty back in today.” I was just thinking, no, we don’t need you. We don’t need that nightmare client taking up that appointment time, when you could swap her around for one of your perfect clients.  That’s how you kind of have to look at it, yeah.

Killian Vigna: So it’s pretty much the only time you’d ever wish for a cancellation or a no show.

Pamela Laird: Yep, definitely.

Killian Vigna: So just on that then, was business good at this stage and it was just a case of they were frustrating customers or were they taking up the bulk of your customers?

Pamela Laird: Well, there was a mixture because when you looked at the appointment book, the appointment book was really busy. But in that appointment book, there was a lot of, like your cheaper clients  and probably your moany clients really to be fair. There’s that mixture, there’s the ones that don’t really get what you’re trying to do. They’ve got the money and they’ll pay the money, but they become that nightmare turning up late, never turning up, mucking you about, phoning in the morning rescheduling for the next week, not turning up. So you’ve got that one, so that’s quite a hard one, think about getting rid of ’cause they do have the money.

Then there’s the ones that, oh just put me in for a quick dry cut. You know, if you’ve got too many of them, your appointment book looks really, really busy, however when you do the figure side, the average client spend is really low or your average hourly spend. That, as a business owner, is what you’ve got to look at. Business looked really, really good, but financially, it wasn’t the best. If you swapped all those clients for great clients, your profit was going to definitely go up and up.

Killian Vigna: Yeah, ’cause there almost like putting in the bare minimum as a customer.

Pamela Laird: Yeah, and even less. You’ve got to work out how much you basically need to bring in per hour, and if you’re filled with all these cheaper end clients, it’s never going to work. You’re going to fight that losing battle of you personally having to work extra hours to fit in more clients, to sustain the rest of the business.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: If you were pretty clear on what you were going to do, at least find, you know, get rid of those Bettys, how did you approach that with the team? How did they react initially?

Pamela Laird: Oh, they just think I’m crazy. So yeah, we’re going to redo this and we’re going to try and get… I mean, it’s really hard as well, ’cause you can’t just say to people when they come in, no we just don’t do your hair, so you’ve got to kind of build up to that as well, of taking certain things off your price list. Dry cuts just have been eliminated totally. If you want a dry cut, you can still have one, however, you have to pay the same price as a wet cut. It’s not that we won’t do your hair, it’s just you need to pay for that time, ’cause you’re getting… it’s more about the time aspect of it. It’s still taking the same length of time to do a dry cut as it does to do a wet cut. Become that better client and have a better haircut.

Killian Vigna: So your team were pretty much on board with that because they were getting the most out of it too?

Pamela Laird: Once you explain to them as well that by filtering out this type of client, we can start marketing towards attracting a better type of client.

Killian Vigna: That kind of bring us on to the next question as well. You’ve kind of cleaned up your menu as well, what sort of marketing did you have to change around and to be able to… Did you know your demographics through marketing? Or was it just kind of you needed it to sell products that they’d opted for mostly? Or services?

Pamela Laird: I didn’t have the time. And like that I was the doing the CMA masterclass which was taking you through different ways of marketing. Obviously, you have your sales pitch, but you also have your content marketing, which is more about showing people what it is you actually do, and sharing with them the experience they’re going to have when they come in the salon. We were doing different things, you know, we were talking about videos, and blogging, and social media, and everything like that, and we then talked about, we went on to talk about customer personas.

That then, for me, was a light bulb moment of okay, so there’s certain types of people that you want, and although we call her Bernie, Bernie is a certain type of person for us. We have quite a few Bernies come at our salon. She falls in each group, she follows… you know, our work, what she did, she has dogs or pets, you know, that type of thing. So you’re building up this understanding of a certain type of customer, not just one person. Once you’ve got that, you also know… Like, I know that Bernie loves Facebook, so I’m not going to spend loads of time advertising on Twitter if all my Bernies are on Facebook.

It’s building an understanding of who your perfect customer base is, and then marketing towards that. We do… I’ve done some blogging, we do some videos, we’ve got Instagram, we do a little bit of Snapchat. I’d like to get my head around Twitter, ’cause I do know that I’ve got an audience on Twitter, but I think it’s more of a business audience rather than a customer audience.

Killian Vigna: So yeah, and that’s kind of awesome knowing then which platforms work for you, because like you said, you want to move on to Twitter but it’s not a case of I just have to be on Twitter, it’s you know there’s a reason you want to be on it.

Pamela Laird: Yes, definitely. We have a big audience on Facebook. I mean, we don’t have a huge audience, but the audience we have, are really engaged and that’s because they are actually our customers. Our customers have loved it, checked in when they’ve been in. We put videos and stuff that we’ve done in the salon, we do all our own content, and they’re the ones that are liking and sharing it, and that’s what you want. On Instagram, it’s a completely different audience. Our younger market is there and we get a lot of our training models from Instagram, so if we’re looking for a certain type model, we put up a wee Instagram story and through that, you’re getting people, yeah, yeah, I’m free on Wednesday, I’m coming for training. It’s understanding exactly where they are, and what it is that they’re looking for, whether it’s a blog, whether they read, or whether they watch videos.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: When you were defining that persona, I’ve chatted to a few people who aren’t necessarily very marketing savvy and stuff, and personas is kind of a concept that they have a hard time wrapping their head around. Did you actually craft that Bernie persona around someone you actually knew?

Pamela Laird: Yes, she’s a real life person. Bernie’s been a salon client, I think she’s about four years, but she is also my perfect customer, like hair types or I love cutting short hair, I love people that read books, drink gin, have animals, are dead friendly, really excited about life in general. Now she walked in our salon, she’d been going somewhere else quite local and just through talking with her, I knew she had to be with me. I knew of every stylist I had in the salon, she was my perfect client, and that’s really why I use her and to describe a certain type of persona. We do, we use different clients names to describe what type of customer we’ve got.

Killian Vigna: I’m assuming Bernie knows that she’s Bernie?

Pamela Laird: Yeah, yeah, when I did my talk, my presentation, there was a picture of Bernie in the presentation. Like that, she brings us strawberry daiquiris and stuff at Christmas. She’s just really special. She just loves being in the salon, she speaks to all the other customers, she just involves everybody, she’s just that really, really good person. We have other customer personas that aren’t like that. We’ve got a quieter client who Ashleigh’s really good with that type of client. I just scare them. I freak them out. They’re not right to be with me because I’m too loud, I’m too overpowering, so they’re not right to be with me, because Ashleigh’s like my polar opposite, so if there’s a client that shouldn’t be with me, she goes to Ashleigh.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Is it a case then of figuring out not just who is the perfect client for the salon, but actually who’s the perfect client for each and every team member as you build that perfect team?

Pamela Laird: Yep, definitely. It is quite hard, ’cause my ideal job in the salon would be to interview every new client and work out exactly who their best stylish would be. I’m not great with long hair, it’s not my thing. Then as again, Ashleigh, Ashleigh loves long hair, she loves highlighting, she loves long hair, she loves that big bouncy blow dry. If that client walks in the salon, oh please, don’t give her to me, give her to Ashleigh, ’cause Ashleigh’s going to give her the best service, has the best understanding of that type of hair in that service, so it makes perfect sense to put her on Ashleigh. She’s going to be happy, Ashleigh’s going to be happy, we’re all going to win, and I’ll get my short hair clients.

Killian Vigna: While you have one ideal client for the whole salon, each staff member pretty much has their own particular persona that they like as well then?

Pamela Laird: Yeah, we definitely have services that we are better at doing and I’m a great believer in if you don’t want to do that service, then you shouldn’t be forced to do it. If you struggle doing hair ups and it’s not your thing, it doesn’t come naturally and you really dread seeing a hair up in your column on a Saturday, then I’m not going to force you to do that. Put that client in with the person that’s better at doing that service. Yeah, it works both ways.

You’ve got definitely a type of client for the salon, but then as that filters off, in an ideal world, you would get each individual client with their perfect stylist. What we did do in the salon was we each took our top 20 customers. We’d run our Phorest report and took like the top 20 customers each. Then we went through them to highlight whether they were our perfect customer, or whether or not they should be passed over, so we sometimes pass over clients. If I’m feeling that this client here should be with someone else in the salon, I’ll make that introduction.

I may be saying, right, “I’m off on holiday, why don’t you try Ashleigh or Kelsie this time,” in the hope that I’m thinking she has a back up stylist or if I’m too busy, she’ll go in with someone else. So run that report, that would be on your checklist. Run your report and work out who your perfect customers are.

Killian Vigna: I really like that, because … especially when clients pick their preferred staff member, to tend to just kind of wait for you to come back or if you do have a back up that they are comfortable with, then that means it keeps the business flowing. Yeah.

Pamela Laird: Yeah, we like to share customers so as that you know that well, if Hazel’s full a bit this week, I know that she can be booked in with Kelsie. It’s not having to go at the stylist and say, “Oh, do you mind if,” it’s just a given rule in our salon. If you’re fully booked, that client’s going to be booked in with your back up stylist.

Killian Vigna: That’s a fair statement, yeah.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: If for instance I had a salon and I had a lot of Bettys, and I came to you and said I can’t do this anymore, how…

Pamela Laird: Shut your shop, just shut your shop. Go home.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: What would be your advice to someone who wants to make that transition? Is there a checklist, kind of like a point-by-point, this is what you kind of have to do and eventually you’ll get there?

Pamela Laird: I think what it’s more about is attracting the right client to your shop, rather than getting rid of the ones that you don’t want, ’cause as you attract the right clients, your wrong ones will drop off. They just disappear because when you’re asking for the right amount of money, you’re giving the right service, I mean, we are big on promoting our retail products, we use social media, we always rebook our clients, so I think we give off certain vibes and stuff to these clients that you really don’t want to come back.

Because the pressure’s taken off you, because the good ones are coming in the door, the ones that you really, really want, you don’t focus on the negative ones. They’re slowly just drifting away to… You know in our town, I think there’s 11 hair salons in our town and they can go there. I’m now like, you don’t have to come to us. There’s another 11 salons, you can go there. So if somebody comes in now and says, “Well they’re cheaper around the corner,” I’m like, “Well go around the corner. Go there. You don’t need to come to us. We have a good clientele. We’re not begging you to come here. It’s your choice.”

Killian Vigna: That’s mad, the fact that you’re saying there’s 11 salons and yet you still turn around and go, well, we have an ideal client and that’s who we want, where most people go to the 11 salons in the town, I have to take everyone. Everyone that comes through the door has to be mine essentially or there’s that worry of will I lose all business. So it just makes it even more of a, I suppose bold move, a braver move.

I suppose, you said you’re actually part of, it’s CMA, isn’t it?

Pamela Laird: Mm-hmm (affirmative), yeah, yeah.

Killian Vigna: You think that is a definitely a driving force behind making these decisions? Or would you have kind of thought of this yourself if you weren’t part of any other groups? Do you think salon owners would get involved in networks, and groups like that?

Pamela Laird: I think there’s more groups now. Four years ago when I first, I would say I stumbled across CMA. I was looking for something, my business was, it kind of stagnated, I was having problems and issues with things, I didn’t have a website at that time, I wasn’t really on social media, I knew something needed to change. I ended up meeting a brand guy, a designer, a local – Col from Pixels Inc., he took me under his wing really, to help me understand the importance of having like a brand. So I met him through the group but then through being part of that group, I was then introduced to the social media side of things, the content marketing, and the videos.

I’ve always been one for exciting new ideas. You know, I’m there first, I have total FOMO, I have fear of missing out and that and everything, let me do it, let me do it first. When I walked into this group, it was perfect timing for me. As now, there’s a lot more groups out there, there’s a lot more business groups, there’s loads of business cultures, there’s people popping up all over the place. I feel that I got really core understanding from CMA as to who my perfect customer was, but they also give you the support and letting go of the ones you don’t, you know, you don’t need them is what they’d say.

You’d be in panicking, and “this client’s come in, they’ve been a nightmare, they’re moaning about this, that,” and the next thing, “well just let them go.” Don’t get involved in that argument, don’t be part of the online social media bitching and moaning thing. Just call it a day and let them go. A group gives you the strength I think to do what you know is right to do yourself, but you’ve got the support there. They are pushing you forward saying, “Just do it, just go for it.”

Zoe Belisle-Springer: The groups I think are fun in the sense that you’re getting people from different industries and different backgrounds, and sometimes if you’re only looking at your own industry, you can miss out on certain things. So it’s really good for that as well.

Pamela Laird: Yeah, I don’t tend to be part of hairdressing groups. I’ve got hairdressing friends, I have close… like, there’s three of us, two of them are from down near London way, and we just have a wee what’s up group and we just keep each other going. We just, oh, I’ve had this bad day today and we’re all salon owners, we have the same sizes salons, we met on a conference in Italy for Matrix, so you know, we gelled there and we keep each other going. It’s not a big formal group, it’s just a really personal help each other through all the lumps and bumps that come with having a salon, really.

Killian Vigna: A little group to vent to.

Pamela Laird: Yeah, totally.

Killian Vigna: It doesn’t matter what business you’re in or what industry, if you’re only in the same industry groups, you’re only going to learn what each other is doing. Where if you… you have to step outside and we have had other people on the show and they’ve all said the same thing. To succeed, you need to look outside of your industry and find out what other people do, to be able to bring that back in. It’s like that mind shift change. If you’re doing the same things over and over, and do the same things as everyone else in your area, who is going to progress?

Pamela Laird: Yeah, you definitely need something to stand out, especially nowadays. Like that, I’ve just started similar to what you’re doing, but interviewing the local business owners in my town who have their own little business, it’s a small town, then you can build it, you know, our own little community within the town to help share to all our perfect customers that we have, exactly what’s going on. Nobody has a clue what goes on in our town. So that’s my next step, engaging other small businesses in what’s going on.

Killian Vigna: Cool. So just to wrap up the show I suppose, for anyone else that decides right, they want to go and find their Bernie today, what would you kind of… What steps would you advise they start taking now to work on that journey?

Pamela Laird: I would say start with yourself. It’s a big step to make a decision to change, ’cause I basically changed my whole business model through making the decision to take certain things off the price list. Also, that if you have a certain client in mind, is your salon reflecting what this perfect customer’s after? Are you just giving her instant coffee when what she’s really craving is a cappuccino? That sort of thing, so really reassess your whole environment and your team.

Are your team trained well enough to cope with the type of clients that you’re after? If you’ve got somebody who only does dry hair cuts, and suddenly you’re going to expect them to do all these wash, cut, and blow drys. You know, are they quick enough? Are they trained enough to understand all the products? So it’s shifting from basically what you’re doing right now, to picturing where you want to be, and working out that journey that you need to go on to head those perfect clients.

And speak to them. We did a customer survey. We printed out sheets, check the boxes, tell us what we could be doing better and things like that, but give them to your perfect customers. Don’t give them to everybody. Only give them to the customers that are really important and valuable.

Killian Vigna: Start being more aware of your customers coming through the door and going, I suppose like a filter, yes, no, yes, no, good, bad, good, bad, and just work it that way.

Pamela Laird: Yep, definitely, because you all have that client that when you see her in your appointment book, you can’t wait for her to come in, and you maybe eke your time out a little bit more, you maybe give it a little bit, you know, more of an effort, ’cause you want to spend that time. If you’ve got eight hours in your day, back to back with people that you just can’t wait to speak to in your day job, it’s phenomenal. What more of a buzz do you need? Obviously you want paid, but you know.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yeah, that definitely makes a difference.

Killian Vigna: Well, Pamela, listen, that’s brilliant and thanks so much for joining us on the show today. I hope some of our listeners out there will be able to take that brave move that you did and I suppose, start cleaning up their client base, because when you start having your ideal customers, that means they’re going to be happier customers. That means your business looks better as well, like when you start getting reviews and stuff, it’s going to really filter out those negative reviews because someone that has a negative review, they were looking for something that you can’t offer. So it just really cleans up that whole side of things. I suppose it really makes working life and business life happier for you, in general.

Pamela Laird: Yeah, definitely. Then you’ve got a happier team. If your team are coming on, looking forward to their day, it’s happiness all around for everybody. You’re not dreading who’s going to walk through the door. Like you say, that review on Facebook, or on Google, or whatever like that, moaners are always going to moan, that’s what I say, and you don’t want them in your business, just get rid. Let them on. Let them on somewhere else. Let them be somebody else’s problem!

Killian Vigna: Well listen, thanks very much, Pamela.

Pamela Laird: You’re welcome! Thank you for having me on the show.

Killian Vigna: So that was Pamela Laird from Fin and Co. Hair, discussing how to ditch your Bettys for your Bernies. We’d love to know, who’s your Bernie and how are you getting on? So moving into the second part of the show now, we have Zoe talking about upcoming webinars.

Zoe Belisle-Springer: Yes, and unfortunately this week, we don’t have any webinars, but what we do have, we do have is even better at the moment. We’re giving away a bundle of two books. The Coaching Habit, which is a really, really cool book that we’re actually reading, some of us are reading in Phorest, and then The Lifestyle Salon Owner by Rich McCabe – just came out this year. So we’re giving away those two books, The Coaching Habit, The Lifestyle Salon Owner, and we’re also giving away a Dripster Cold Brew Coffee Maker. So we have that one bundle, there’s going to be one winner, it’s a draw essentially and once again, as usual, and it ends on September 6th at 5 p.m. GMT, so U.K, Ireland time.

All you have to do is go onto the Phorest blog, we’ll link the giveaway in the episode’s notes anyways, fill in your details and then that’s it. It’s as simple as that. You can also find it on Facebook and on Instagram. But yeah, so ends on September 6. So that’s it for us today! If you have any feedback, feel free to leave us a review on iTunes or on Stitcher. We’re always looking for suggestions on how to improve the show. We’re also on Spotify now, so don’t forget you can also check us out there! Otherwise, have a wonderful week and we’ll catch you next Monday.

Killian Vigna: All the best.

Thanks for reading!

#LetsGrow


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