Business Featured

How To Maximise Opportunities at Christmas with Andrew Barton | The Salon Champion

December 09, 2019

In his latest series for Professional Hairdresser, Andrew Barton, Headmasters, Creative Director and Headmasters Mayfair salon owner is championing the salon hairdresser and their place on the high street. This month he looks at the busiest time of the year in the salon, Christmas and just how we can maximise the opportunity. 

For many years the work of the session hairdresser has been celebrated as the pinnacle of a career in the industry and this series I want to focus on the salon stylist. These are the true heroes of our industry and they really deserve their moment in the spotlight too. I want to showcase the wonderful careers and lifestyles salon based hairdressers can achieve and Christmas is that one time of year when energy levels are high, the opportunity is yours for the taking, achieve targets, increase your take home and build great client relationships for the next year.

With full and busy columns it’s the perfect time to reward clients for their loyalty, up sell other services and re-book their next appointments for the quieter time at the start of the year. Speak to them about what you want to do with their hair in the following year whether it’s focusing on hair health, length, or perhaps a style change. Sell it in now so they can look forward to it. At Headmasters we have a range of health focused cuts and treatments that work really well for those new year’s hair resolutions. Have a think about what you can offer in your salon and pre-sell in December for January and February.

The choices we make at this busy commercial period go way beyond whether you send a Christmas card to your clients or the colour of the Christmas lights. Christmas 2019 at Headmasters means a menu of party hair looks to excite clients in November and get them booking extra blow-dries and hair ups in December. Our concept is one girl shot in a party dress with four different hair looks, one with her hair down wearing our signature Headmasters blow out and three hair up looks, showcasing that you can change your whole look with your hair, you don’t need a ton of wasteful party outfits.

It will appear on our Christmas card, salons windows and posters as well as across our social media. To maximise the story, training has been created to ensure the teams are engaged with the message and skilled and ready to deliver the service. Essentially the activity markets a blow dry/hair up service at a time of year when clients want to pamper themselves for the office party. It’s a simple call to action to excite clients with service.

The take home for your salon/clients is:

Agree your Christmas strategy now so you are ready for December. Keep it simple and focused on the following drivers which will improve your bottom line in December and the start of the new year.

  1. Reward loyal clients.
  2. Boost return and repeat business by talking new year hair plans and re-booking
  3. Maximise sales – find out what clients are up to and give them solutions that will help them, e.g. sell retail! It’s the season for dry shampoo sales, add a shine treatment to their service to give their hair an extra boost, explain if they have a blow-dry for their big event it will see them through the next few days with a couple of easy tweaks…

It’s these busy December weeks that can boost the start of the year with return bookings so think about how you will incentive clients to return and bring their friends. At Headmasters we use our  ‘introduce a friend’ scheme and our VIP club to reward loyalty throughout the year and boost return visits.

How To Maximise Opportunities at Christmas with Andrew Barton | The Salon Champion 1

We know that weekends can generate over 20% of the total week so consider extended opening time. Make the most of your busy time by planning for success:

  1. Pre-plan the opening hours of the salon to maximise on the busier lead up weeks, consider seven day opening, longer shifts to accommodate clients.
  2. Through the holiday week the salons demand will be lower so it makes sense to be open for the weeks of high demand. Involve the team with the shift planning rewarding them with time off during the holiday week when there is less client traffic and when they can enjoy extended time with their friends and family.
  3. We know that Sunday opening can really help clients plan their appointments and have time to pamper when they are not at work. The weeks through to Christmas can enjoy 50% more transactions and in particular the weeks from the 15th to the 25th December be the busiest of the year so build the salon diary to maximise on demand.
  4. Adjust targets with the team based on the previous year’s performance at this peak time and the key is monitor the success daily setting achievable targets to smash. Consider the incentive for stylists to achieve and personalise this what works for one stylist doesn’t always work for all.
  5. The time of giving think about the retail display all of the manufacturers drive gifting at Christmas make the gifting part of the salon Christmas display it’s an easy gift for clients. Stock up plan ahead and ensure you have the stock levels clients need particularly around the salons best sellers.

Be prepared for the business boost, at Headmasters Christmas begins like the high street from the first week of December. Hold a staff meeting in the weeks before to ensure you are all know the Christmas plans and of course together decide on the Christmas party where you’ll celebrate great team work together.