I heard an interesting tidbit on the radio the other day. The news reporter was discussing the effect that the recession is having on several industries. Interestingly, it seems that in a sluggish economy, dry cleaners experience a surge in business. One dry cleaner summed it up by saying that when money is tight, people take better care of what they have. Hence they take their fine suits and fancy dresses in more frequently to protect the investment they’ve made in their clothes (and in their appearance).

There is a message in this for nail care professionals. If it is indeed true that people take better care of what they have, then your business will also thrive despite the recession. People may decide that though they’re not able to afford certain luxuries now, they don’t want to let their personal appearance slip into disregard. If this applies to care for clothing, it certainly applies to care for nails.

Use this knowledge in your marketing. You may find that natural manicures and pedicures are an easier sell now. Your extension clients have a particular interest in maintaining their investment. And your retail business should also thrive: If a client lets a few extra weeks slip between regular appointments, couldn’t you make sure she’s at least polishing her own nails at home with a bottle of nail polish purchased at your salon?

It is absolutely essential that you continue to reaffirm your commitment to high-quality service. It is ever important that your work be flawless; that your clients’ nails aren’t breaking or lifting between appointments; that they feel like the money spent on their nails is more than just an investment in vanity; that the service in your salon is incomparable If you let the “little extras” slide now, you will damage your reputation – and your business – in the long run.

There may be the temptation, during these economically trying times, to react by lowering your prices. If you do so, you may only harm yourself and make it more difficult for your salon to regain its former health once the economic tide turns. Instead of trying to offer bargains, offer great value. If you’re charging $25 for a fill, then that till needs to give the client a real bang for her buck. You want to remain a salon noted for its service, not necessarily its bargain prices.

You may lose a few clients during this time, especially if you’re in an area hard hit by the recession, but if you can economize on running the salon and keep your overhead lean, instead of skimping on service or lowering your prices, you will be taking better care of what you have – your loyal clients. And. just like fine clothing professionally cared for, you’ll have them a lot longer.


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