This past weekend I visited a new barbershop with my brother in law and his son. I usually look out for the fastest barber in the room whenever I go to a new place for a haircut. I do this because I think of time like a currency most times. 30 minutes at the barber’s is 30 minutes that can be used to read, work, minister to someone or engage in some other activity that may be more profitable. Time should be invested and not spent since it’s the same as spending your life.
Anyway back to the story. This is about how to grow a barbershop business and other life lessons we take for granted.
When it was my turn I proceeded to ask the barber if he could complete my haircut in 10 minutes. I saw my bro in law cringe a little because he didn’t want us to offend the guy. The barber(let’s call him Kenny) said he didn’t want to rush it so I sat down anyway and hoped it would take about 20 minutes. That was terribly presumptuous of me. Lol
In between barbershop banter, charging a clients phone, eating chips(Kenny did not me) and receiving a pretty good haircut, I observed the other barbers in the room and noticed they were simply giving haircuts and letting the clients leave without taking any details to follow up later with other value added services. After my haircut, Kenny thanked us, took our money and that was it. Since I teach people how to start and grow businesses I’ll share what I think Kenny and his other mates could have done to increase their revenue.
1. Customer data
My bro in law has been to that barbershop many times with his son but no one knows their details. Kenny should have taken down our numbers or email addresses. With these details I would call, text or email the a link to my professional Twitter page or blog where he shares insights on personal grooming, style or creating a personal brand as a young black man.
I say this because Kenny is not just in the haircut business. He is in the personal grooming, style and image management business. The more he acts as an expert in these areas, the more credibility he will have.
2. Value Creation And Marketing
I would call or email or text the client every two weeks with facial and skincare tips as well as a reminder to come by the barbershop since I’m sure they may need a shave or haircut soon. I would recommend(and sell) products such as shaving gels and other skincare products to the client. Since I’m this case my brother in law visits this barbershop with his son, I would create Father/Mother and Son packages that cater to parents who bring their sons to the shop. I would also collaborate with service providers whose services would appeal to young boys. I may even go as far as selling Star Wars, Pokemon or whatever merchandise these parents usually buy for their sons.
Having the skills to cut hair, build a bridge, write code or whatever gift you are trained in is not enough. In a barbershop, what determines success in the long run is not the skill alone but the value the barber provides. The barber who talks to you and advises you on what to do to have healthy hair or skin is ten times more valuable than the one who just cuts your hair. The barber whose goal is to have the happiest customers will find out which of them prefer longer or shorter times in his chair and will tailor his services accordingly.
Value is only value when it benefits the receiver.
By the way, Kenny spent about 50 minutes on my hair that day.
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