The Two Blondes are salespeople! We sell stuff! And selling is an art; it is the ebb and flow of an engineered conversation. Because we sell products in the salon industry, it has been our privilege to work with, and mentor many salon owners and stylists. However, what we have discovered is that most of the professionals working in the salon industry forget that their work is in a sales organization!

The common thread seems to be that their business is styling hair or delivering massages or facials, but let us ask you this – if you don’t have any clients in your chair/room are you still a stylist or aesthetician?

Getting clients in your chair requires you to sell something – that something is a “time slot”. Like dentists, doctors, lawyers, accountants, or chiropractors, you are selling time slots!

Unless you sell those time slots, your chairs and rooms are empty and you no longer have a business. So how do we connect the two – the salon business and a sales organization? We have made it our mission in our work with the salon industry to teach stylists and owners HOW to sell. We have disguised it as: Dialogue, Presentation, Education, and Scripting, and all sorts of different words to hide the fact that the salon business needs to sell stuff to keep their salon doors open.

Photo by @hannahhaydn

It’s time to change the training received in beauty schools on becoming a service provider to include sales training.

It is the cry throughout the salon, “I don’t like to sell because it feels like I am forcing my clients to do something that they don’t want to do!” Hanging out a shingle or displaying a diploma does not guarantee success. Just being good at what you do isn’t enough; you may survive without selling but you definitely won’t thrive.

And yet, time and time again, we prove to stylists that educating, retailing and re-booking clients is the time-honored way to KEEP your clients coming back to you over and over again. Statistics have proven that the more a client purchases products from you, the stronger the retention you will have from that client. And yet, even with all the research and statistical proof, resistance to selling in our industry is immense!

A service provider walks up to the front desk, turns to the client and says, “Okay, great, guess you don’t need anything at home. Call me when you need to get your color re-done. Thanks, bye!” You might think that your stylists don’t do this, but every day, in every salon, I hear this. Selling is a dirty word in our business!

What can we do about it? Train, train, and train again.

And like everything else that we teach and preach, it is about having systems in place, including when and how to initiate the sale! When you hire a new staff member, whether it is a technician or administrative, make sure that they understand that they will be working for a sales organization whose products are: salon services and salon products.

Photo by @candra_ward

Teach the basic principles of selling to your team on a regular basis:

  • Prospecting which includes your marketing tools: finding and keeping clients for the salon.
  • Qualifying means determining if the client is right for the salon – are they interested in the products and services you have to offer.
  • Presenting means showing the client what it is you do – service, re-booking and retail!
  • Closing is finalizing the sale, which in the salon world is re-booking the client and sending them home with product to keep them looking and feeling amazing until they come back.

Train your staff with the correct dialogue. There is a way to sell and be successful and also a way to send your clients scurrying around the corner to the next salon!!