As a business owner, the love you have for your business drives so much momentum. When culture, mission, processes, and environment are all aligned, that’s when salons and spas have the potential to grow. But what happens when you fall off track and lose the momentum you worked so hard to create? How do you get your business to thrive again?
In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, we’re sharing how our VP of Sales, Robert Maconi, decided to completely overhaul his salon when he fell out of love with the way his business was run. In Bob’s own words, he shares the background of why he decided it was time to rebrand, and all the things he is initiating to make his salon more profitable in the long run.
The Creation of One83 Mane Studio
Here’s a little backstory: We have been in the same location for over 33 years. Last time we renovated was over 16 years ago, and since then, not much has changed except the paint color and our staff. Despite calling ourselves a salon and spa, our spa business has faded the point where we don’t even offer spa services other than HydraFacials. Last year, I ran some reports and realized we lost so much of our men clientele. Currently, less than 25% of my clientele are men, where it used to be almost 60% women and 40% men. In the past years, I’ve also noticed we have a hard time attracting and hiring younger hair stylists that are up-to-date on barbering, latest trends, social media and more. They want to work in a “trendier” salon, and right now, that’s not us.
We became the mom and pop shop we never wanted to be.
We have become stale, outdated, and older person’s salon. Beyond that, we lost sight of who we were and what we set out to create. The culture my wife and I built has diminished to a fragment of what it once was….and it was all our fault for letting it get to this point.
How We Are Making the Change:
I realized things needed to change or it was time to close our doors. Luckily, that is not what we decided. We love our salon too much to let it go. My wife loves changing people’s lives every day, so we decided to start our journey all over again. The only difference? This time I’m using what I have learned from so many great people I have met along my 22-year journey at Millennium Systems International.
We are making the change by gutting the old and starting all over. First, we ran reports to see what services were once profitable and realized we veered way off course. We offer so many services we are not great at, including several in the spa department. The more reports I ran, I realized we lost over 50% of our clientele in THREE years. Clients were trying us once and not rebooking. Yet, if you look at our reviews you will see nothing but 5 stars. So crazy, yet things were still very wrong.
Here’s how we are overhauling the entire business:
Our main goal is to return to the culture we set out to create decades ago. That starts with a new mission and vision statement. My wife and I sat down with our staff, shared our roadmap for the overhaul and asked, “are you in or out?” We ended up losing seven staff members, and are left with four, yet are still yielding the same profit. We included those who stayed in some of the build-out decisions and they even had some great suggestions, such as mobile stations, that made it into the final design.
Focus on Education.
My staff needs motivating to take the next step in their careers, so our new mission will focus heavily on education. Currently, my staff is only at 30% productivity. To get re-engaged with education, I’m taking a couple members of my team to Premiere Orlando in June so they can begin to see the current state of the industry and get to know the latest trends. I’m providing new incentives to learn. Most have never left the state of New Jersey, so those surpassing their goals will get to travel with me to industry events.
To help make the salon more profitable, we completely gutted the service menu and are working on revamping the pricing. We are only focusing on the services that we excel at like hair, color, waxing, HydraFacial, and Perk services, as well as adding two blowout stations and eyelash extensions. We removed all of our “fluff” services and ones we weren’t passionate about such as nails and spa services like as paraffin treatments.
To get Millennial and male clientele back, we are creating men’s memberships and offering packages for HydraFacial. I want our male clients to visit 15 times a year and feel like our haircut membership is attractive and affordable so they will come in often, purchase retail, gift certificates, refer others and become loyal clients.
New Look and Feel.
With changing the name to One83 Mane, a play on our address, also comes a new logo, new website, new business cards and so much more. We are renovating the entire salon to have an industrial feel with stainless steel stations and lots of brick and wood textures to compete with the modern aesthetic of some of the most successful salons.
Converting to Meevo 2 has allowed us to fully embrace technology. We intend to make our salon more Millennial-friendly by offering more services to be booked online, and Meevo 2’s new booking platform removes the headache that services like color will be booked incorrectly. We plan making our salon truly mobile, where stylists can check-out and the chair and take more control over their profitability by rebooking and upselling without having to rely on the front desk.
Robert Maconi came to Millennium Systems International in 1997 with a great deal of industry experience. In 1985, Bob opened his own salon in Lincoln Park, NJ and in 2006, it was named one of the Salon Today’s Top 200 fastest growing salons in the country. Bob loved using Millennium so much in his own salon, that he brought his industry expertise to our sales department to help other businesses take advantage of all that our software offers.