Pt 5 - The Expansion
(Growth & Duplication)
As I begin this section, let me share with you a real salon example:
Before I reveal what she did, I need to give you the setting. The salon was a tiny, down home kind of place, in a lower rent part of town, down the street from the projects.
Here’s the problem, instead of expanding her business to increase the size of her salon, or offer additional related services in the beauty area, she decided to build a miniature golf course! Yeah, putt-putt golf on a small lot, in the hood. Needless to say, it just sat there year after year, and no one used it. Thousands of dollars were spent with no return on investment.
I give this example to share this lesson. If your business is booming and you want to expand, expand in the area of, or related to, your business. Remember in Part 4 where we talked about branding? As a loctician, or natural hair stylists, you are in the beauty industry, not the golfing industry. Please try to stay true to your brand so people will know what you are about.
Now, to expand your business you can:
Expand your current location
Expand the services or products you provide
Open additional salons in other locations
When you open your salon, you may want to look at growth opportunities. If you are located within a strip mall, a location next to you may come available. You may find that the strip mall manager/owner will be more than willing to open a wall between the two locations if you are willing to lease the space next to yours also. You can easily expand by simply expanding into the space next to yours.
If you are located next to an empty lot, or other property for sale, once again, you can just expand next to where you are currently located. The good thing about purchasing adjoining land is that while the builders are building, your salon is still in operation.
If you start off as a Loctician, you may want to expand your services to include all natural hair. This includes braids, twists, afros, cornrows,etc. You may also want to expand into other beauty services such as eyebrow arching, make up, nails, skin and body care.
If you don’t currently sell products, you can start. You can also develop your own line of hair care products and sell them. Chances are, you use a homemade concoction that you put together on your own hair. You may have it in some old reused jar or spray bottle. But, you use this because it is good, and it works, right? Soooo, why not put it in a new, nice container, put a label on the container, and sell your own products? You can start by not just using the good stuff on your hair, but by also using it on your client’s hair. If it’s a good product, they will want to know what it is and how can they get some too. Well, if you have it on a shelf, your customers can buy it. If you don’t make products, you find someone who makes them and sell them on consignment, or buy them wholesale. You can also, or additionally, sell commercial products. You can have a mini beauty supply store within your salon.
The key is to find out from your customers what they would like to have. How do you find out? Ask them.
Open Additional Salons in Other Locations
Before you think about expanding or opening another location, make sure you can afford it. You should have some back up money in savings. How much you need depends upon your expenses. Also be sure to put as much care in selecting your next location as you did your first location. Location still matters.
In Part 3 we talked about having systems in place. This is very important when you’re thinking of opening additional locations. Once you have a system, and it is documented in a manual, it can be duplicated over and over again. The ideal situation is to be able to take your Operations and Procedures Manual and smoothly start up another salon.
You have learned valuable lessons along the way from your first salon, remember those lessons. Play up your successes and work to avoid those not-so-smart moves you made.
Well, this is the last of the five part series of opening a natural hair salon business. There is so much more information that I can cover but I don’t want this blog post to become too long. I hope you enjoyed this series and that it helped. Please let me hear from you. You can comment on the blog, email me through the contacts page or comment in the new forum. Also, please fill out the 4 question survey on the home page. I love to teach and enjoy sharing, just let me know what you’d like to know more about.
Love ya Inspired Locs family!!!
Til the next blog post…..