September 2008

Lisa Kind - Editor

The Mane Objective | by Marco Pelusi


Keeping Your ‘Coiffures’ Filled

Have you had a few gaps of time in your appointment book here and there lately? Have clients been postponing their appointments for a week or two, or even some for longer than that?

No matter what the reason, you need to be in control of your book and keep your “coiffures” (coffers) filled. The very first thing you must do with every client—not leaving a single one out—is to prebook all your appointments, without fear or hesitation. If there is fear, move through it and do it anyway. You have to set up the next appointment.

As a general rule, cut and color services should be booked four to six weeks in advance, generally depending on your client’s hair length. Your sole goal as a hairdresser should be to have a full book well in advance whether it’s a robust or sluggish economy.

Try to be fair with the prebooking though. Be honest. Don’t keep them coming back too soon if it’s unnecessary. Work within the needs of the client’s hair on a case-by-case basis and personalize it for them. Always aim to be extremely fair with your clients, as they are able to notice good intentions, and will therefore wish to support your business. You can even go so far as to say something like, “Let’s set up your next appointment with color only, and let’s set up another cut a month or so later, so the price won’t be too crazy at one time for you.”

If fear about prebooking still comes up for you, reframe it into a different scenario. Plant the seeds of an upcoming service while you are working on each client. If you are doing blonde during the summer, discuss possibilities of going red or deeper for the fall.

Always keep your clients thinking in advance about what could be with their haircolor or style. Recommend future cut or style ideas while you are in the midst of their current appointment. If you are only taking off a few inches this time, recommend a possible shorter cut the following time, when they are ready.

This seed planting technique will keep them coming back, because they know you’ve offered them the possibility of change, seasonal or not, and will easily allow you to prebook their next appointment.

And don’t forget about asking for referrals, especially during slower times. Everything in our business is specifically about relationships. If you like a client, ask them to refer you to new clients, and offer either a small discount or a small product as a reward and motivator. Tell them you wish you could clone them.

Most good clients won’t even want a discount or gift, but are simply happy to refer you. The people who give out your references are the ones you need to connect with. These specific individuals are exactly whom you must target as a hairdresser. It’s all about referrals and relationships.

Make sure to consistently keep your appointment book in mind as you work during your day. Plan ahead and fill it up. You will avoid gaps of time and you will be able to take control of your destiny by doing so.

Keep it going. Forge ahead with strength and book ‘em.

Marco Pelusi is globally recognized as a haircolor trainer and platform artist. Marco Pelusi Hair Studio, Inc. was named Best Hair Color in Los Angeles 2007 by KTTV Fox11’s “myfoxla Hot List” competition. Pelusi created the Marco Collagen Color Guard HairCare System, the collagen system developed for color and chemically treated hair. For more information, visit