FREE TRAINING! 7 Figure Instagram Formula- Get More Followers, Book More Clients!

Ep. 150: BOOKED SOLID BEAUTY BIZ WITH PMU MARKETER SHEILA BELLA, LASH EDUCATOR ALI LILLY, AND HOST OF LASH CAST PODCAST PAUL LEUBBERS

  

Get ready, sister friend, because you are about to be BOOKED OUT.

     

That's right! We're about to get you booked out. How?

Well, I brought together some of my friends in the PMU industry that are great speakers and educators to talk all about the strategies WE use in our successful beauty businesses to get booked out.

I've got Royal and M'Lisa of Spa Strong, Ali Lilly of Lash Anarchist, and Paul Lebbbers of Lash Cast! It's a dream team, what can I say? We're giving you a TON of value in this episode and it's all FREE. So what are you waiting for?

Let's get you booked out, beauty boss!

 

 

Here are the episode highlights:

‣‣  [14:54]  The most important part of my personal strategy to getting booked out is establishing repeatable habits that bring new clients to your business consistently.

‣‣  [16:27]  These are some of the habits that you NEED to be implementing with every client so that they not only return for another appointment, but they also want to refer EVERYONE they know to you.

‣‣  [17:42]  Do NOT just give up on people who are undecided. Undecided is NOT a no.

‣‣  [19:59]  My number one key piece of advice? Be active.

‣‣  [21:12]  Here Royal and M'Lisa talk about the sales killer: EGO.

‣‣  [24:00]  How to keep open communication with your clients.

‣‣  [29:49]  If you're having trouble getting booked out your problem might be consistency. Ali Lilly talks about that here!

‣‣  [33:22]  What do you do when you don't have a lot of draw on social media and your studio is in a location you feel like doesn't pull a lot of traffic? Focus on giving your clients consistent care that they can rely on that will bring them (and their friends) back to you!

‣‣  [36:19]  A pro tip for using models for promo.

‣‣  [37:39]  Paul talks about doing work for free: is it worth it? Should you do it?

‣‣  [39:35]  Paul shares more advice on calling clients.

‣‣  [45:10]  Here Paul talks about how to give yourself a customer service audit.

‣‣  [56:40]  Our Q&A starts here. We cover moving to a new city and reestablishing your business, how to increase your prices without scaring away customers, and insurance for home mircroblading studios.

 

 

GET ME BOOKED OUT NOW! (Listen Here) 

 

I'm so grateful that these incredible PMU artists, educators, and speakers joined me for this episode. Make sure to follow them all on Instagram!

Royal and M'Lisa Ellis AKA Spa Strong @spa_strong

Ali Lilly AKA Lash Anarchist @lashanarchist

Paul Leubbers AKA Lash Cast @lashcastpodcast

 

You can follow me, Sheila Bella, on Instagram @realsheilabella!

  

Here are the links that were mentioned in the podcast! 

Pretty Rich Bosses

7 Figure Instagram Formula

Text me! (310) 388-4588

 


 

FOR MY LISTENER BOSS BABES

You can enjoy this podcast by downloading it on iTunes here.
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FOR MY READER BOSS BABES

You can enjoy a transcript of the podcast here.

Sheila Bella:

Yes, yes, yes, my name is Brow Boss Bernice and I'm booked out for several months. That's what everybody wants to be, right? You guys want to be booked out? That's what we're going to be talking about today. Okay, so let's talk about what booked out means. Booked out, according to the, what website is this? Lexico.com. Okay, booked out, having all tickets, seats, rooms booked or reserved, having no available space. Full. Or a person having no time available for further engagements or appointments.

 

Sounds pretty groovy, because that also means cash flow. I know you guys listen to this because you're like me, you love cash flow. Baby, let's do this.

 

Today on Pretty Rich Podcast I'm hooking you up with some how to be booked out experts, okay, and coaches like Paul Leubbers, Ali Lilly, Royal and M'Lisa Ellis and here's what we all have in common. We all have podcasts and we all want to teach people how to be more successful in their beauty businesses and we're going to give you our best stuff, you guys, our best stuff. The stuff that most people pay for but we're giving it to you right here.

 

We gave it up in this room on Clubhouse and you guys are going to get the inside scoop because here is the replay. Booked Out Beauty Business right here on Pretty Rich Podcast.

 

Welcome to Pretty Rich Podcast, where you're totally the heroine of your own story. I'm your host, Sheila Bella, and I've built a seven-figure PMU beauty biz and a seven-figure online biz without a degree, without a fancy website, or a sugar daddy. If you and I hang out on here long enough, you're going to start to believe that you can do it too. How about that for a side effect of listening to this podcast? Because you really can. I know you think I don't know you, I have no idea who you are, but I do. I really, really do because I am you. I was you, and I believe we are all on the same journey together.

 

My perfect job didn't exist so I created it. The job I wanted wasn't hiring me, wanted nothing to do with me, so I skipped the line and hired myself as CEO. Just like you can. So consider me your secret beauty biz BFF. In case you need to be reminded on a weekly basis that power is never just handed to you. You have to take it. Are you ready beauty boss? Let's jump in.

 

Do you want more clients? Do you want more customers or students for your training? Do you want to build a profitable online beauty business that teaches other people how to do what you do? I know you know that I'm the host of this program, but what you may not know is that I've built two multiple seven-figure beauty businesses. One a permanent makeup studio, and the other a profitable online business and both of them make six figures a month and I'm on a mission to help every woman I meet do the same thing.

 

My mentorship program, Pretty Rich Bosses, is pretty incredible. It's my online mentorship program where it's one on one and it's also group. It's something that I've built to help beauty entrepreneurs just like you find their way to success so that they can meet their highest potential and if you're wondering if this is going to work for you, you're wondering is this a scam, don't just take it from me. Listen to these incredible testimonials from real students currently in the program.

Speaker 1:

I was able to quit my corporate job and I quadrupled my income [inaudible 00:04:14].

Speaker 2:

Pretty Rich Bosses has taught me how to make more money than I've ever dreamed of in the middle of a pandemic.

Speaker 3:

I went from homelessness to $88,000.

Speaker 4:

I was able to sell enough courses in two weeks to make my full six month program investment back.

Speaker 5:

Because of Sheila, in my first few weeks I closed five clients in my coaching program and I'm not even in micro blading.

Speaker 6:

The honest sales strategies have led to the most bookings I have ever had.

Speaker 7:

I got to tell you, last week I made $5K working from home and not even launching my freaking full courses yet.

Sheila Bella:

If you're ready for transformations just like these, go to sheilabella.com/apply and let's set up a complimentary strategy call to see if Pretty Rich Bosses can help you get the results you know you deserve too. Again, go to sheilabella.com/apply.

 

What's up you guys? It's Sheila Bella. Let's learn all about how to be booked out, because being booked out means security, it means predictability in your income, right? It's no secret that when you're first starting out in the industry, not even, that's the goal. You want to have a revolving door of customers and new clients consistently.

 

I'm on Clubhouse now, like y'all should be too. You know what? People have been bugging me to play the Clubhouse game and I was resistant and now here I am and I do it every week. Clubhouse is pretty amazing, I have to say. It's interesting. I've been able to connect with people that I typically would not be able to connect with. I experienced this last night. It's really important you guys to always be on the cusp of these new trends because Instagram was a trend, it's here to stay. What if it becomes a staple? I'm here because what if Clubhouse becomes a staple? And I don't think it's going anywhere. I don't think so. It's only growing. Whatever it is, it's hot right now and you got to get on it.

 

But here's the thing. I was able to snag you guys a live recording of a Clubhouse room that I did with these guys all about how to be booked out in the beauty business and guys, on a side note, it is considered inappropriate and unethical for you to record Clubhouse rooms unless you inform everyone that a live recording is in progress, and especially when people come up for Q&A, they're going to come up for Q&A at the end here, you need to tell them, "Hey, if you're going to come up for Q&A, you're going to be on the podcast."

 

Guys if you have not tried Clubhouse, I mean this is going to be your first taste of it basically. Next time try to be there in person because the benefit is, well nothing beats live and you'll be able to ask us questions at the end.

 

All right guys, without further ado, here is Booked Out Beauty Biz.

 

All right. Okay, awesome. Guys, today is all about being booked solid. Booked solid in your beauty business. I think that's everyone's goal when you first get started especially. That's the goal. That's the dream. I want to be booked solid. Right? Because being booked solid means security, it means stability, you know exactly how much money you're going to make the next couple of months. You know you're in demand and when you're in demand you can relax.

 

If you guys feel like your business is either slowing down or you're having issues, you're having problems getting it started, if you feel like you're stuck, if you feel like your sales aren't increasing, we are here to help you. We're going to share with you our personal philosophies and strategies for how to increase your bookings and how to be booked solid in your beauty business.

 

Let's just start by going around and just quickly introducing ourselves. My name is Sheila Bella and I help beauty entrepreneurs just like you make serious bank. Be wildly profitable in your salons, studios and online. I have a successful online business as well as a successful salon, so whatever medium, I know that I have the tools to help you succeed to create the job and the life that you want.

 

Before we get started, you guys, going around with the introductions, go ahead and take a minute to check out our moderators up here and give them a follow. Give them a follow, check it out, follow them here, follow them on Instagram, and remember to hit that little bell next to their face, tap on their face, and you hit that little bell next to their face so you get notified every time they're in the room.

 

Let's just go around, start the introductions. I love Clubhouse rooms that are organized and my goal is to have that with you guys today. Let's just go around and start the introductions. Spa Strong.

M'Lisa Ellis:

All right. We are Royal and M'Lisa Ellis, the owners of Spa Strong. We are spa and esthetician coaches and we help spas and esties build fulfilling, thriving and profitable careers. We do that through online coaching. We actually just are launching a membership, a monthly membership this week. We just announced it and so that's going to get started March 1st. I am a licensed master esthetician.

Royal Ellis:

I am a former police officer, now spa and esthetician coach.

M'Lisa Ellis:

Which sounds weird but actually it really works.

Royal Ellis:

Yes it does.

M'Lisa Ellis:

We have a podcast. We're just here to help the industry be able to have success and be empowered and that's our goal. That's us.

Sheila Bella:

Yeah. What's the name of your podcast? Spa Strong podcast.

Royal Ellis:

It's called the Spa Strong Podcast and we are on all platforms.

Paul Leubbers:

What? Spa Strong? What? Why is it that?

M'Lisa Ellis:

I don't know. Why is it called the Spa Strong Podcast?

Paul Leubbers:

No no, I just meant your name ... Nevermind.

M'Lisa Ellis:

Oh okay. I was like, Paul.

Paul Leubbers:

I just meant hey, Spa Strong. Why is your name Spa Strong Podcast? I don't know. Go ahead.

Sheila Bella:

All right. You guys. Guys, you're so funny. Everyone here, I just realized, everyone up here has a podcast.

Paul Leubbers:

Really, you didn't know that?

Sheila Bella:

Yeah. Everyone has a podcast.

Paul Leubbers:

Light bulb.

Sheila Bella:

Check it out. Okay awesome. Who wants to go next? Ali or Paul?

Paul Leubbers:

Well I think I'll just go since I interrupted you guys already and I'm still getting ready I feel like, still getting dressed here. All right so real quick, my wife is not here with me, Kathy, my amazing partner is away on assignment. I always like to say, she's busy, but I am here, the help. Me and my wife, we are here to help lash artists grow their business and really we, actually like Spa Strong, really close, we're not as close as them, but we're about to launch also our coaching program. We for three years have had one of the top lash podcasts in the country, just helping serve people in two areas. Both helping with their business, but also helping with their lash technique and helping them actually in the room themselves to become a better version of themselves both professionally and personally. Yeah, professionally and personally.

 

We have basically been doing this for, actually since 2005 so we've been around a long time, seen a lot of stuff, and our job we feel like is to show people how we built our seven-figure salon and Integrity Lash, which was the most award-winning lash salon in Southern California and we want to help other people be successful and build the salon of their dreams too. That's us, and let's go to Ali.

Ali Lilly:

Hey guys, I'm Ali Lilly. I'm the owner of Lash Anarchist. We have a product line that specializes in mega volume lashes and pre-mades and we are, I can see why Sheila chose us, all of us up here and the speakers, we actually have a course that we're putting out right now geared towards lash artists that want to take their career further into education or into product sales. It's mainly based on helping you with the tech side of things and growing your business that way and getting all of your ducks in order before you go off on your next venture. Yeah, our class is called The Beauty Educator's Blueprint and it's open to apply to it right now.

 

I also have a podcast. It's called Lashes & Bullshit. It is mostly bullshit, a little bit of lashes. It's kind of fun.

Sheila Bella:

Dude. Guys, I'm obsessed with you Ali. You relax and motivate me at the same time.

Ali Lilly:

Good. That's actually really great.

Sheila Bella:

I'm like, oh, well it's great. Well you inspired me to be authentic and just be like, "All right. This is how I am. That's how I am." Guys, give everyone here a follow on Instagram. By the way, guys, take this opportunity to ping your beauty business friends in this room because we're going to be dropping a lot of gems on how to be booked solid so if you have any friends on Clubhouse that you want to ping go ahead and do so right now. Just hit that little plus sign on the bottom and yeah, ping your friends. Be like, "Guys, this is a great room. They're dropping gems in this room." Isn't that what they say on Clubhouse? Dropping gems in this room.

Paul Leubbers:

According to [inaudible 00:14:12], I think yes.

Sheila Bella:

That's true. Dropping some truth bombs. Some nuggets. Some gems. Okay, we're going to be those people today. Okay. Awesome, you guys.

Sheila Bella:

I'll start, but I just wanted to go around and just give you guys my philosophy on how to be booked out, what is being booked out about, where does that come from, where does that start, what is my strategy for being booked out or what I feel like most beauty entrepreneurs are missing nowadays, why they're not seeing those results.

 

Okay, first and foremost I think that in order to be booked out, in order to get new clients consistently like a revolving door of ideal clients, you need to establish habits. Like repeatable habits for your business. It needs to be a repeatable system, sales process for getting clients all the time.

 

I actually have a course, I'm just going to tell you, okay? This is not to promote my course but I'm just going to tell you. I do have a course though that it kind of maps this out in detail. It's called New Clients Consistently. It teaches you how to deal with clients, all five types of clients. The client that just booked with you. The client that is physically present. The client that is undecided. The client that is cold or dormant. The client that is dormant, that has seen you but hasn't seen you in awhile, and the last type of client is a client that's undecided. Does not know who you are yet or maybe they're not sure if they want to book an appointment with you.

 

Each and every one of those types, there needs to be a repeatable system, a repeatable set of habits that your salon or studio needs to develop in order to get new clients consistently. For example, when you have a client that's physically present in your studio, make sure that you book them a new service or their touch up appointment or their next appointment while they're still there.

 

Another thing you should be doing with a client that's physically present is ask them for referrals by giving them tools, making it really easy for them to talk about you. For example, if you have a before and after photo of their lashes or of their brows, pass that on to them while they're still there because half the time, you know how it is with a new procedure, they're probably texting like 15 different girlfriends or a few different girlfriends while they're in your chair. If you give them something to share with their friends right then and there they're more likely to do so.

 

For the client that just booked, make sure that you're always telling them what upgrades, what other services are available to them before they come in because they might not be aware of all of these other great services that you offer that they can knock out in the same visit.

 

A big thing where I think that a lot of beauty business owners are leaving money on the table is for the people who are undecided. Okay? I think you guys are giving up too soon. I think you're giving up too soon because studies show that most people do, and I think you're losing out. It's a proven fact that about 40% of sales can be made at the followup call. You're probably letting go of a lot of clients who would book with you if you pursued them. Something that my team always says is that sales is proactive. It's not reactive. You have to go out and get it. You can't just take no for an answer just like that. When you have a great conversation with a potential client, whether that's through the DM, the comment section, on the phone, on FaceTime, and then all of a sudden they ghost you, I think most of you are giving up. You need to follow up. I think it's important to develop a clear, solid followup strategy that's organized. Have a CRM, get organized. Write it down. Who are the people that are still undecided? If you develop that with each potential client, your numbers will go up. If you're not increasing your sales then I think that might be your number one mistake.

 

Another thing too is people typically send a link, a booking link after a phone consultation. Listen, guys, people are easily distracted. You might find yourself getting off a call with a potential client and like, "Oh okay, I'll send you a link after the call." How many times has that actually led to a booking? They might book after they get off the phone with you, or a lot of times they forget. Right? We have a million and one things fighting for our attention. If it's not an email it's our kids, it's our jobs, our friends, our pets. What's going to happen is either you're going to forget to send that link or that potential client is going to completely forget to even check it out.

 

The rule here is always be booking, always be closing. Don't say, "Oh, I'll send you this link after we get off the phone." Do it now. Take the deposit from them while they're still on the phone. Before you hang up the phone get their deposit, get their commitment, get them on the books because right now is the time you have her attention. You have her interest right now. Book her right now.

 

For those that don't book, make sure you follow up. A lot of people ask me, "How often do you follow you up? When do you stop following up?" You follow up until they say, "No Sheila Bella, get out of my face." You follow up until they say no.

 

Those are the biggest things. The biggest things I see, the biggest mistakes I see [inaudible 00:20:54] salon owners who need more bookings or don't have consistent bookings. We're going to answer some questions at the end when we open it up for Q&A, but before I do that let's go ahead and pass on the mic to Spa Strong.

Royal Ellis:

Awesome, awesome. Yeah Sheila, I loved everything you said. We both did. Just to piggyback, one of the things that we notice that people struggle with the most is ego.

Sheila Bella:

Yeah.

Royal Ellis:

You have to open your mouth. You have to. You have to get out of your comfort zone and start booking these people and start re-booking them.

M'Lisa Ellis:

Exactly. What we see a lot is people open up their doors, this brand new, bright, shiny, new spa studio or lash studio and they're like, "Okay, this is great. I'm here," and then they wait for everybody else to come and find them. But that's not how it works. You have to go out and increase your visibility. You have to go out and let your voice be heard and make your name known because people are living their busy lives, clients are living their busy lives. It's not on their to-do list to find the brightest, shiniest new spa studio in town and go and make it their personal responsibility to fill the books for that esthetician or for that PMUA.

 

You have to be willing to talk to people. Tell people what you do. We found that that's really hard for a lot of people, especially women, where a lot of women are a little bit timid and they don't want to seem cocky and they don't want to be conceited, but when you look at the way that a man talks about his business-

Royal Ellis:

Yeah, so what we've noticed is that when men talk about what they do in their business, they're like, "I'm a CEO of a Fortune 500 company. I changed this life, this life, this life, this is what I do." When women, the majority of the time when women talk about what they do, like for example estheticians, what we've known is, "Hey, I'm an esthetician. I own a small business." That's it.

M'Lisa Ellis:

That's it. You're not talking about what you do and what you provide. It's very important for you to open your mouth and talk. One of the things that you touched on, Sheila, is referrals. And I no longer practice aesthetics, I now focus completely on coaching. But when I had my studio, I was completely referral based. My whole business was growing off of because people were spreading the word. And part of why people were spreading the word was because I asked them to. And it wasn't just, "Hey, if somebody that you think might like this, could you tell them about it?" I would say, "Who do you know who would want to come in and have beautiful lashes? Who do you know who also would love to have glowing skin?"

 

And when they would say, "Oh, I think my sister would like it." I would say, "Awesome. Would it be okay with you to give me your sister's phone number so I can call and invite her in?" Because you have to keep the ball in your court. And remember clients, for example, I have people that have provided great services on me, like nail techs and stuff and I think, "Oh my gosh, I've got to leave them a review." Or "I've got to tell my friends about them." And I just get wrapped up in busy life and it's nothing personal, but I don't do it.

 

And so you thus, you have to remember that clients are busy. They're living their lives. You aren't the first thing on their mind all the time. Having some kind of an incentive, "Oh, if you refer somebody to me, you'll each get 10% off your next appointment." I mean, that helps, but it's still important for you to keep the ball in your court. So instead of asking, "Will you go tell people?" Asking, "Who do you know, who would like to come in and be treated to such an amazing experience like you had today?" And then ask for their information and you pick up the phone and you call them, "Hey, this is Melissa from the loft SPA, my client, Susie, let me know that you've been talking about getting your lashes done. I would love to invite you into, come and get a set of volume lashes. I know that you would love it so much. Susie told me about you. She thinks that we'd be a great fit. How's your schedule this week." Okay? Really taking the initiative to get people in your door.

 

Another way to keep yourself fully booked is by keeping an open communication with your clients. A lot of times, estheticians, lash artists, we just want to do our job and not really look for feedback. Feedback is something that can be scary, especially if it's maybe negative feedback or things that you need to work on. But if you want your clients to stay with you, you have to stay engaged with them. So, one thing that we talk about in our Keep Your Clients course is something called the treatment survey.

 

And it's basically a form that you have your clients fill out at the beginning of every repeat appointment where you're asking them, how were your results? Did you have any reactions? Also, how would you rate your experience so far? How would you rate your experience at the facility itself? How would you rate your experience with the treatment provider? And this is so important because have you ever had a client who is coming to you and you think everything is great and then one day they just ghost? And you have no idea why. You don't know if they weren't happy with something, you don't know if they went to somebody else, you have no idea what the problem is.

 

And if you are keeping an open communication and having them give you feedback every single time they come in, you're able to nip these little issues in the bud. And then the client trusts that you value their experience. You really take them seriously and want to make sure that they're having the best possible experience and relationship with you. So that's another thing that we feel is really, really important with being booked solid.

 

But I do want to say one more thing really fast before I pass it on being booked solid is up to your interpretation. A lot of people think, "Okay, in order for me to have a successful beauty business, I have to be booked 40 hours a week, no matter what I have to be booked 50 hours a week or 60 hours a week. For me and my studio, 20 to 25 hours a week was booked solid for me because that allowed me to really be able to give my full attention to my business, but also give attention to my classes that I was teaching, give attention to my family and my friends. So I just want you to keep that in mind, as you're listening to this, booked solid may have a different definition for each of you and that's totally 100% okay.

 

If you're feeling fulfilled, you're meeting your financial goals, you're feeling successful in your business, then it doesn't matter how many hours anybody else is working because this is your business and this is your life. Royal do you have anything else to add?

Royal Ellis:

You nailed it.

Sheila Bella:

Oh, yeah that's so good. I love that last part. How being booked solid. What's your interpretation of that? And just to add to that, you made me realize that sometimes being booked solid is the problem. If you don't have a way to scale. Some people here, I don't know if you're in this position, you feel like a robot, you feel like a beauty robot. It just like that's all you're good for. You're just passing out these brows, these lashes, these facials, all day long but that's it like you have no life. You have no life. That's also a problem, but that's a good problem to have, because now you're at the next level of problem, which is scaling.

M’Lisa Ellis:

Exactly. Love that. Real quick, we just want to let y'all know. We have to sneak out at 9:30. And so if you have questions you want to ask us, send us a DM on Instagram. So we'll just sneak out of here quietly at that point

Sheila Bella:

Leave quietly as the bottom button says. Don't do that yet you guys.

M’Lisa Ellis:

Right, we're still here.

Sheila Bella:

We have eight minutes, understood. Thank you guys for sharing your knowledge guys. Give them a follow fostering and Instagram, right? Who's next? Ali. Paul or Lash Daddy.

Ali Lilly:

Daddy lash?

Sheila Bella:

Daddy. All right, Ali, you're up?

Ali Lilly:

All right. So for me, when it comes to getting booked solid and remaining solid booked, I guess, depending on your interpretation of how many hours that is for me, I like to work four days a week just as full-time as possible, like eight hours, four days a week. But I think it's extremely important. Actually, let me back up. I've seen a lot of lash artists that are so extremely talented and they offer probably the most beautiful artistic lash sets that I've ever seen, but can't get booked for some reason where the artists around them are booked and they really don't understand what's going on.

 

And the main thing that I see is the level of consistency that they have with their business. I think as artists, because most of us control our own schedule. It's easy to think like, "Oh, well, I can just reschedule somebody or I can go over on my time. I can ask them to come in a little bit later last minute." But for me, what helped me get booked and remain booked solid was always being consistent with my clients and offering them a consistent service every single time. So when they came in, they knew that I would be on time for their appointment. I never rescheduled people unless it was an extreme emergency. I can count on one hand how many times I rescheduled on somebody, especially last minute.

 

And I finished up on time and I gave them a consistent service. I also invested in myself and my skill. So I was totally booked solid back in the day as a lash artist. And then I moved to a new town and I had to redo it. I had to get myself booked again. So I just start from scratch basically.

 

And that's where I kind of learned all of these systems that I had. I don't know, like subconsciously put in place back in Utah where I lived before, because when I moved to Arizona, I went from zero to knowing literally nobody to completely booked in about six weeks. But yeah, what I'm realizing over time is it was the way that I ran my business.

 

When I first started, like I said, I thought I could reschedule people. I thought I could go over. I could ask them to come in later so I could take a lunch and I was not keeping clients and possibly my work wasn't staying as consistent either, but I had a completely different experience for the second time that I ended up having to build an entire clientele from scratch.

 

Another thing that I did that I think was a really big deal because I do believe that word of mouth is probably the best referral. It's the best way to get people that actually will trust you right from the get-go. And what I did when I wasn't busy working were taking a pain client, I would take that time to take a model who either paid me a discounted rate, or I had, I don't know a friend or a family member, or even a friend of a client where I would do lashes on them for free just to get my work out there, but also for practice.

 

And it wasn't before long that just the word of mouth was what was building my business. Even when I moved to Arizona and I had to build a whole new clientele from scratch, I really didn't have a big social media following. Actually, I didn't hardly have one at all. I had just started Instagram because it seemed like people in Arizona wanted to see my portfolio before coming to me because I was new and it totally made sense, but that's when I started my Instagram.

 

So there wasn't really any type of draw or reason to come to me on social media but what I had put out in the world already on clients or models was a really good advertisement for the works that I could do, but also the way that my clients liked coming to see me. I think that, that's very important.

 

And I do have to say, when I first moved here, this was five years ago, coming up on five years ago. I worked out of a tiny little room that was painted completely pink, even on the ceiling. And we were in the middle of the club district so there was clubs and people everywhere and loud music. I didn't even create an amazing SPA experience. It wasn't a luxury service, but my clients liked coming to see me. Also I offered them very consistent work because I did invest in my education and I practice all the time. But I really think the main thing is just staying consistent and honest and having an open communication with your clients.

 

I would tell them too, especially when I was new, I was like, "If you like your lashes and you like coming to me, please tell your friends, I will give you a discount on your next fill, whatever.” And I was actually amazed at how quickly I filled up with just putting those things into that. And then like working on models when I had time off. Instead of on the days when I only had one client, normally I would come in and do my one client and then go home. I would stay and try to get somebody in so I could take another client for free just to get my work out there.

 

So that's my take on getting consistently booked

Sheila Bella:

Love that. I hear you on the models thing. For the first three years of my business, I did one free service a week and I feel like people are like, "No, never do it for free." Well, I mean, can't take in many forms. So I don't remember. I would do a lot of models, but I would have them sign off on an agreement to share my work with their friends on their social media. They didn't even need to have a lot of followers for them to share. I just wanted to see if their followers were engaged. Sometimes micro influencers are actually more effective than macro influencers. Just like somebody who's well-known in your city because you're trying to target local people anyway. Whatever, like the pastor's wife, the leader of the PTA. Like sure I'll do you a new. I haven't even broken a 100 grand yet. Let's do you for free.

Ali Lilly:

Yeah, totally. And I will say I did, there are a lot of influencers here in Scottsdale, Arizona. I don't know what it's just such a strange world, but when I moved here, I didn't realize the influencers were like a thing. Because like I said, I wasn't on social media, but I will say I had given lashes to girls with hundreds of thousands of followers and never got a referral from them. But then I would do lashes on, I don't know, a bottle service girl next door who had maybe a 1000 or 2000 followers and I would get tons of clients, tons of referrals.

Sheila Bella:

Yes. A bottle service girl could do the same thing.

Ali Lilly:

Yeah, bottle service girls are my jam.

Sheila Bella:

Yeah, and strippers are my jam too. They're pretty, they look great for your portfolio and they have pretty friends who care about being pretty.

Ali Lilly:

So I love that.

Sheila Bella:

Yeah, absolutely. All right. Thanks Ali.

Ali Lilly:

You're welcome.

Sheila Bella:

Paul, you ready?

Paul Leubbers:

Yeah. I was going to say something about the stripper thing, but I'll just stay away from that because that's probably an inappropriate. It's like [inaudible 00:37:36] we were really into jocks. We really got them. No, but that said, a couple of things that you guys just said that I thought were interesting just to build off of what you were saying is, the whole idea of free not doing free, I get it. My, kids are in their 20s and they're like, "Never do anything for free, man." You know, "We'll get paid to work," Because they think it's like that you're being ripped off. I think that's how they talk on here. Like, "Dude, I got something called drop on you." Yeah.

Sheila Bella:

On clubhouse. People on clubhouse talk like surfers.

Paul Leubbers:

Well, I grew up near the beach, so it's got a little bit of that in me, but that said the thing was, when [inaudible 00:38:25] started working in 2005, I mean, really, you say, I do eyelash extensions that she might as well been, saying I'm from another country or another planet. I mean, people had no idea what she was talking about. So she would just give it away all the time. And we always said it was better to be busy and growing your craft than it would be sitting in your room waiting for a call. Especially if you're new. If you're new and you're just trying to learn your crap, you just got to pay your dues. There's no fast way to get there.

 

In fact, the fastest way to get better is just to be working consistently whether paid or not. And so just take clients, just take them if it was free right now, you're just trying to get the skills to get better at what you're doing. And then when amazingly that will bridge the gap of becoming excellent in your craft. If you think you're just going to get paid for no day one after that two day course of learning lashes, and somehow you're going to just be rolling the money making, as they say $300, a new set. 12 times a week and you're going to be making a 100,000 in the first three months.

 

It's you just been sold bill good, this is not going to happen. So you need to just do the work, be humble, work your butt off. And before you know it, the clients will be banging on your door. So just one thing about that. Secondly, I was a tip with, Sheila was talking about calling and stuff like that. We did this and we got tons of clients. We would call clients that wouldn't even leave a message with us. People would call and they would just be like, just drop the phone, moving on to the next person. They're just waiting for the first live person to answer the phone, which with lash artists that's sometimes rare because you're in the room and all that. But if we missed a call, we had a front desk, call back in.

 

We would just say, "Hey, I'm sorry. We were so busy that I missed your call if you're calling about eyelashes,” we'd sometimes leave a message and sometimes they’d answer because for some reason people don't answer my phone. I mean, I know I don't. But we leave a message and say, by the way, if you're calling out lashes, we'd love to get you in, just give us a call back and we'll take care of you. And we would even text them.

 

And like Sheila said, you do it until they basically stop bothering or to leave you alone. I actually would put all those phone numbers down and we had a log, an Excel sheet at the front desks of all the people who called and that we left a message with and we updated. And then when we have slow time coming up, let's say a month or weeks later something came up. I say, "Oh I exhausted the call list. And just text everyone that's special and they'd go back. And they would text me, at that point... because every day we'd get probably 10, 20 calls a day.

 

So, and now that may be half of them wouldn't book or didn't do anything. We would just text them say, "Hey, we're excited to let you know. I know you were interested in lashes. We actually have an opening and we have a little special running if you want to book this coming Friday, we can get you in for whatever the deal was.” And we got so many people doing that. I mean, we really wasted no energy, no clients would be wasted.

 

And once in a blue moon, at first, my front desk was always like, "Oh no, no, they're going to yell at me." "No, they don't yell at you." They just usually nice to say, "I'm sorry, but I found someone else." Or "No thank you." Or "It a wrong call or something like that. And once in a blue moon, maybe once a month or once every couple of months, someone would be like, "Man, why are you bothering me, man? Leave me alone." That's just not sorry about those voices, but that's just the way it was.

 

So don't worry about bothering people. People are looking for you. They're calling, they're looking for you, that they are searching for someone to solve their problems. And as long as you see that with your mentality, "Oh my gosh, they want me." Then chase after him go, "Here you go, I'll take care of you. I'll take care of you."

 

And you'll be shocked. How many people, I never got the percentages down, but it was like 20, 30, 40% of the people that we got called back would actually book. And that is a really fast way to get yourself back especially once you have a good, a marketing machine out there getting the word out and let people know about you.

 

So now moving on to what I was going to talk about, that was the stuff based on what you guys brought up, I've been taking notes and I have like 80 ideas, but I'll just go to this one and try to break this down. With us, the key for us, our philosophy was to wow your client. If we, wow our client, they would become our evangelists. And that our work would be less. We would not have to work as hard to build our following.

 

I mean, truth is, and the other people have said this earlier. I think Ali and everyone, I think has said this, that our number one way of getting new clients is referral easily. It’s not even close. When I went back and I did surveys when we found people and we kept track of how we found people or found out, I should say, over 50% said they found us because a friend referred them.

 

And then there are 37% that said they found us because a Yelp. And then I forgot what the rest was like, Google and then Instagram and so forth. And Instagram was actually our lease. Now we weren't great at Instagram at the time, we didn't really care about it because we had so much traffic coming the other ways. But truth is Yelp was actually our best tool because we had really focused on like Ali was saying, get that review, get that review. And you need to ask for review with every client and you need to ask when they come back and don't do the review.

 

We actually would joke. We would take seven requests before we get to review. And we were the most, I had more five star reviews than any of our lash salon in Southern California. And it's only because we asked every client consistently as part of our system, like Sheila said to be in, you have to have a program, a system set up.

 

And it was partly a two things we would do with that's what the review would it ask for the referral? And there's a right time to do it. And the time we always did it, is when the client would first look at their lashes and have that moment, "Oh my God? And sometimes, especially if it's their first time, sometimes they'd be crying like, "Oh my God, I've never been this beautiful." Or these revenge lashes that are getting back to their boyfriend that just broke up with them or whatever it is.

 

And so we asked at that moment where they're really just so up high, you say, "By the way, I'm so glad you love our work. And by the way because of that, it would be so wonderful. If you could give us a review and if you could refer me to some of your friends." Somebody that you'd come with your language, but just the ideas that you need to ask at that point, because they're at their moment where like, they feel like they owe you, even though they're about to pay you a lot of money, they still feel like they owe you because you've over delivered.

 

You're always under promise, over deliver. And so at that point, they are just excited and but don't be discouraged when they don't do it because people just get busy. I think it was Sheila said, "Well, you have to get up leave." And then they're like, "Oh, what? Huh? What? Squirrel?” They move on to other things. So you keep coming back eventually they're like, "Holy mackerel, man, you right. I keep saying, we'll do that review I'm so sorry." And they will do that review. Okay?

 

So you just got to be willing to get in their face and bug them. Okay. The last thing I was going to say that really changed it and helped us create that wow experience was that you really need to give yourself what I call a customer service audit. You need to go down and you need to be honest. This is called being self-aware and be brutally honest with yourself and go through every touch point in your salon and rate it.

 

Now it's a lot, I've never actually counted how many it's 50, 60 touchpoints. When I just need to touch point, your website, how you answer the phone? How is your message center? Your parking lot. How many drive into your space? When they walk into the front door, how do you greet them? What's it like when they walk into your room, the consult and so forth. There's just tons of these. Neither rate yourself.

 

Need to go through each one. Let's say one to five, one to 10, whatever years, one to a hundred, whatever your rating system you want to create. And you have to be just very fair and very honest with yourself. And you can even pretend to be the client yourself and walk in, like drive up to your salon, walk in through that front door and just try to experience it with new eyes as if this was your first time. And then you rate it and then you just go through and you see where you're getting ones. And then you look up for the ones we're going to get the most bang for your buck, where you're like, know what? I think I'll get the most bang for my buck with the way I greet people on the phone. Because right now I'm just going, "Hey, it's Paul from Integrity Lash, how can I help you?" Which is very uninspiring. You need to go back to, I could probably find a more engaging way. Or when someone calls me and asks me for prices, I just go, "Oh, it's $300." No, no, you don't give the price because what happens next? They hang up.

 

You need to ask questions and get into the conversation and finding what they need and then you can help them and give them the price. You need to go through that honest conversation and rate every contact point in your company. And let me just give you three places, three ideas that we did, when we did this of our staff, we changed and we've improved it.

 

One, we actually really found that this was kind of fun. We only did this towards the end, before we closed our salon but it was a great idea. Got this from Joey Coleman, if you guys don't know him, he wrote a book called Never Lose a Client. Highly, highly recommend that book. It's a great, great book. And he basically says, "When someone calls, after they book your appointment, what you should do right there is get your phone out, shoot a 20, 30 second video and send it to them, welcoming them to your business.

 

If someone booked a testing, she'd go on and say, "Hey guys," because often our stylist wouldn't be booking the appointment, it would be our front desk. She would get on the phone and say, "Oh my gosh, Sally, I just saw that you booked with me. I'm so excited. I can't wait to see you next Tuesday at 3:00 o'clock for that new set. You're going to walk out, looking amazing." Something quick, short and that way one, they know your face. They've already seen you, they connected with you and they're much less likely to cancel on you now because they've almost like, oh my God, I bought into this. I'm stuck now. They've reached out to me. I've met my person. I feel like I owe it to them to show up now because they're so nice. That's a nice thing to do. I did that. We did that.

 

We had a welcome sign and when people walked in and their name was on that sign. When they walked in, they'd be like, oh wow, they already know I'm coming. Oh wow, that's so cool. And then we also have a thing called PhoneSoap, I don't know if you know that, but it's a little thing you can put your phone, roam, it charges the phone and it cleans their phone for them, which is really big right now with COVID. And we had the PhoneSoap in the room which would do that for them. I just offer as this thing. That's the type of stuff when you go through and you have the honest conversation with yourself and you see well, yeah. Because if you're doing what everyone is, I'll just say this and I'll be done.

 

You're doing what everyone else is doing, you're not wowing anyone. Don't copy the company you worked at beforehand. If you just go, oh yeah, I'm going to do exactly what my old salon I worked at. We are going to greet them this way. We're going to walk them in the room this way and we're going to do this. Okay, well now you're average. You're like every other last stylist in the world. You want to wow and blow people away so you have to blow up the box. You have to go back and just destroy everything. That's why having this little talk with yourself, where you go through every touch point and fix it and make it better. But you can't do it all. Because let's say you have 50 touch points, you can't go. I'm going to approve all 50. Well then you'll just might as well kill yourself.

 

Don't do that. That's a bad idea. You'll get discouraged and give up. Pick two or three things like I just gave you. Pick those things or just take the three things I just gave you and implement those. And that will be big improvements. And by the way, people will talk about you then. Now you are talk worthy. Now people are like, you won't believe what they did. When I came in, there was a sign that welcomed me. And by the way, it's a great Instagram moment. They take a lot of pictures of that sign and share it with their friends. Anyhow, that's a whole bunch of stuff. Hopefully didn't talk too fast, but hopefully that was helpful.

Sheila Bella:

Really valuable, Paul. Yeah. Really valuable. I love that what you said about don't just do what the company that you worked for before did. If you want to go above and beyond, if you want to wow people you have to do more. I always think about that. And that actually inspired me today too with everything that I am doing and my life. Yeah, I shouldn't just do what everyone else is doing. Man, it's dangerous when you tell me to aim higher, because not good.

Paul Leubbers:

Yeah, you're a type A. I know that. You're dominating people.

Sheila Bella:

Unhealthy levels. No, but that was really good. That was really good. Thank you. I needed that. Yeah, so a couple of things you said about making it repeatable and wowing your clients and about following up, I just want to read something really quickly about following up, the sales statistics. 48% of salespeople, it's probably bigger in the beauty industry, never follow up with a prospect ever. 25% of salespeople make second contact, just two, and stop. 12% of salespeople only make three contacts and stop. Only 10% of salespeople make more than three contacts. 2% of sales are made on the first contact, 3% of sales are made on the second contact, 5% of sales are made on the third contact, 10% of sales are made on the fourth contact and 80% of sales are made on the fifth to 12th, guys, contact. Following up is so important. You cannot be too proud.

Paul Leubbers:

Can I just add something to that, just to verify that? Back in the day I was in sales before all this, years ago, when all of you weren't born yet. I was in sales and I actually was a pretty good salesperson. I don't think I was as good as Sheila. If you want to learn sales, Sheila is the bomb salesperson in the world.

Sheila Bella:

Thank you.

Paul Leubbers:

Literally I learned Sheila when I watch her and listen to her, but that said.

Sheila Bella:

Thank you.

Paul Leubbers:

Exactly my best weapon for sales was I was the one that would never go away. And people would say that. They're like, "Holy mackerel, you're calling again." I'm like, "Yeah, well, I'm here to make sure that your needs are met." And then they'd be like, "Well damn it. I guess I'm going to book, I'll do it." And this was, I wasn't even in beauty at the time I was in a different, I won't go into it. But that said, it was just that persistency that never say no that got me to be the top salesperson in the company. And that wasn't always smooth. I was kind of a geek and the nerd and all that stuff, but awkward and whatever. But I was persistent and people also, when I told someone, now this is a little different beauty, but when I said like, "I'll call you two months," I actually called them exactly two months on that day, I just did not give space.

 

If someone's like, I don't want to have lashes right now or I don't want to have a service right now, hopefully in the summer. Guess what? I'm going to reach out to them in the summer and say, "Hey, know what? I remember you mentioned in the spring that you wanted lashes, but then you decide not to. It's summer and the sun's up and we're excited. We'd love to serve you." And then often I would give maybe a little special incentive. This does require writing things down, taking notes and be able to follow up. You can't just keep in your head or wing it. You have to have the system, that's my two cents.

Sheila Bella:

Yeah, no, I hear you. Okay, we can talk about sales all day. I know this might stress Ali out. But no, I freaking, I love sales because sales is where it's it. It doesn't matter whether you're selling lashes or brows or real estate or home goods, a blender. Sales is where it's at. Everyone needs to learn sales. You need to learn sales. It's like, there's this guy, his name is Dean, Dean from the club. And I call him Dean from the club because that's how he referred himself. My husband was shopping for a gym membership. He was either going to get an expensive gym membership at Equinox or he was going to just go to LA Fitness, which was 30 bucks a month or something like that. And so he was comparing both packages. But this guy, Dean from LA Fitness called every single day and I was impressed, man.

 

He would leave a voicemail because Will wouldn't pick up. He would leave a voicemail and it would always begin like this. It would be like, "Hey Will, what's up man? It is Dean from the club. Hey, I got some good news. I got some good news." He always said that he had good news, every call. And the good news was always something like, "You know what? I just got approval for two more of these membership vouchers and I wanted to give you the first offer." And this was every day, he never got annoyed. He never got frustrated that Will wasn't taking his call and I've never met him but I talk about Dean from the club to this day and he always had good news. I just respected that hustle. And I teach my sales team to sell in this way, always with a smile on your face, always with good news and to be persistent. Yeah, Dean from the club.

Paul Leubbers:

You know what? I love Dean from the club. I might steal that from you.

Sheila Bella:

Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah, let's go visit him.

Paul Leubbers:

Like they say, sales is a numbers game. It's just a matter is once you learn what your conversion rate is, let's say for every a 100 phone calls that you get, you know that 10 of them book with you or five of them book with you. Now, you just need to find a way to improve two things here, improve the numbers or improve your conversion rate. But don't feel bad if you strike out 95% of the time or 90% of the time. Whatever that strike out rate is. It's okay. That's a part of sales.

Sheila Bella:

Dean didn't feel bad.

Paul Leubbers:

Yeah, don't feel bad. Just do it.

Sheila Bella:

Just do it, like Shia LaBeouf, does. All right you guys, we have about 11 minutes-ish. Ish, ish. Yeah, we'd want to open this up for questions. If you guys have any questions about being booked out. Go ahead. Come to the stage. Questions. Questions about...

Ali Lilly:

How do they raise their hands, Sheila? I forget in Clubhouse.

Sheila Bella:

There's at the very bottom, there's a hand. There's a hand button, a little note pad button.

Paul Leubbers:

You don't have a peace sign though. That means you'll quit and leave the room. But the other one.

Sheila Bella:

Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, the other one. Yeah. With the open palm. With the open palm. And then, okay, so we have Amanda, we have Kyla. By the way, if you are asking a question, know that this is a live podcast recording, so whatever you ask, your voice will be on a podcast, on the Pretty Rich Podcast, particularly. Okay? Amanda, go ahead if you have a question?

Amanda:

Hey guys. Yeah. I was actually really into what Ali was talking about when it came to moving to a new location and as you know, Sheila, I'm expanding to Scottsdale right now and I'm based out of Seattle. And so here I have clients, employees, the Academy and everything and we're literally duplicating the same business model out in Scottsdale. I just wanted to hear, I know you elaborated a little bit, but on maybe other connections in the beauty industry and just how to get that same kind of momentum when you already have that foundation set up in a different city.

Ali Lilly:

Well, first of all, welcome to Scottsdale. This place is amazing. We're bitching about it being 60 degrees today. That is so funny. I'm like wearing flip flops. I'm like, God, it's so fucking cold. No, so especially here in Arizona, I can speak for this area. You're moving into a great place. Kyla-Lee is actually also from here. She's one of my friends in the industry, but we have an amazing community of estheticians, PMU artists and cosmetologists. And we're all kind of friends. And we do have kind of a nice little community where we can bounce ideas off of each other and we don't feel all in competition with each other.

Sheila Bella:

So cool, so cool.

Ali Lilly:

It's really cool. It's amazing. Basically my advice, I guess, would be to set up and get whoever's working for you and also yourself just hit the social media hard, get in with the Facebook ads. I know that this is kind of, well, whatever we're talking about sales. Anytime one of my friends who is a lash artist, I lashed out of a building with 10 or 12 people. Anytime somebody had an opening, they would just run an Instagram ad or a Facebook ad for literally five or $10 for the day. And they would 90% of the time they would get a client to fill in that space. I think that that's really huge. And then just when you are on social media, making sure that you're marketing to the right people. I know I can see that it says you're a master.

Sheila Bella:

Oh, she's a big deal. I think you guys should be friends. You guys are both my clients too.

Ali Lilly:

Oh nice.

Sheila Bella:

Oh my God.

Ali Lilly:

Hey.

Sheila Bella:

You all, this is a power duo right here. Yeah, Amanda, you're moving to Arizona, meet Ali. Ali, I'm like, oh.

Amanda:

I was just so excited and Ali started talking. I was like, oh my gosh. I was like, we could be best friends.

Sheila Bella:

You totally could.

Ali Lilly:

Exciting. Yeah. We can talk about this stuff of course, through DMs and stuff later, but the main thing with moving to another place, I think is just making sure you're speaking to the right audience so you're speaking to potential clients rather than other artists in your area. I see that as an issue with people often, they're like, I don't know why I'm not attracting actual paying clients. And I'm like, well, you're speaking in lash artists language or you're speaking in permanent cosmetic language. You're not speaking to a client. You're not showing pictures that would make sense to a client. You're showing pictures that would make sense to a lash artist. Just making sure that you're marketing to the right people. And then yeah also, I don't know why, but Facebook ads are super effective.

Amanda:

I love that, because I feel like that depends on the area you're in. That's really, that's powerful info. I really appreciate it.

Ali Lilly:

I think so too.

Sheila Bella:

Yeah, definitely.

Amanda:

Thank you.

Sheila Bella:

Thanks Amanda. Okay, Kyla.

Kyla:

Hi Sheila. Hi Ali. Hi Paul. It's good to see you guys on Clubhouse and reach out. I haven't said hi in a hot minute. Sorry about that. But Sheila, mine's more of a celebration. I really just want to say I am absolutely raving about PRB and having Ali as a dear friend and seeing her explode into all the best ways. I love the CRM model that you have put out there. It is speaking to every single thing that you guys are speaking to here. I just want to put more power behind what you guys are saying and say thank you.

Sheila Bella:

Oh thank you, Kyla. That means a lot to us. We work so hard inside Pretty Rich Bosses to make it. Oh gosh, I have dreams about it. I want to make it so effective so these wins about the program really mean a lot to me. Thank you to us.

Ali Lilly:

Missing you Kyla, I miss your face.

Kyla:

I miss your face too, buddy.

Sheila Bella:

Thank you, Kyla.

Kyla:

Seeing Ali and working with her in that big pink room, I don't think that's a memory I'll forget pretty soon.

Ali Lilly:

Oh my God, I just forgot you were in there.

Kyla:

And with the quarantine and all of this, it's just literally been such a big inspiration and my business is booming and growing and every time I get a DM from Ali saying, "Hey, I see that your IG is doing amazing," I'm glowing. Thanks again guys.

Ali Lilly:

You're welcome.

Sheila Bella:

Thanks Kyla.

Ali Lilly:

Good to hear from you, Kyla. All right.

Sheila Bella:

Okay, Mackenzie.

Mackenzie:

Hi. Hi guys. Thank you so much for taking my question. I have had my aesthetics business for a couple years and I'm ready to increase my prices. Do you have any recommendation on strategies on increasing your prices without scaring away any of your clientele?

Sheila Bella:

Go ahead.

Ali Lilly:

Sheila, do you mind if I recommend right now?

Mackenzie:

Sure, sure. Do whatever you want.

Ali Lilly:

I put out a freebie on this. It's called Raise Your Damn Prices.

Mackenzie:

Love it.

Ali Lilly:

It's on my website, www.lashanarchist.com. Go to the menu under freebies and it's basically a two hour workshop on, I talk through all of the things that keep me up at night when I'm raising my prices and I talk through them and assure you that all is well, including raising prices on friends and family. I guess my biggest advice would be to do it now or do it yesterday. Don't wait. Just do it. You're going to be feeling so much better when your prices are raised and you're working less and making more, you're going to be like, why didn't I do this forever ago? And don't worry about losing clients. It's actually the point of raising your prices. You work a little bit less. Called cultivating your clientele.

Mackenzie:

I love that. I literally posted yesterday on Instagram that my prices are going up March 1st.

Sheila Bella:

Hell yeah.

Mackenzie:

I did do it yesterday.

Ali Lilly:

Perfect.

Mackenzie:

Thank you so much.

Paul Leubbers:

I'll just jump in and add my two cents on that because yeah, price increasing is actually nowhere as scary what people make it out to be. People tend to make a big deal about it and they tend to announce it and make a big deal about it. And like this, we we've raised our prices every year I think for the last seven years, even in the middle of the pandemic. And I'm testing now, this works three days, but still she raised the prices last year. And we at one point, because I felt like we were still too priced too low, is we actually raised our price four times in two years. Every six months we did a price increase and we probably should have just done two bigger ones instead of four, but it didn't matter. We never saw more than a 5% decrease in our clients. Every time we raised our prices. That is really a big thing.

 

Secondly is really, it's not a big deal because every business in the world raises their prices. For some reason in the beauty industry, we think we're the exception to the rule that we're not supposed to do it. We're supposed to be friends. We're supposed to like everyone. Everyone's supposed to like me and then I'm supposed to be poor the rest of my life. We basically had an idea or a plan where the right time to raise the prices, when you're at, whether you call it productivity is a thing that we track very much in our salon. And that means how many hours? If you have a 100 hours, how many of them have you sold? You're selling 90% of your hours, 80%, 60%? you're selling 30% of your hours, not a good time to raise your prices because you're not busy and you want to be busy before you raise your prices.

 

We'd wait till we got to about 80 to 90% at that point and then once we had that, we knew that we could either hire a new team member or we could raise our prices. And a lot of times we'd just raise our prices because our salon was already fully booked and we didn't have more space. The idea would be raise it. And when we did, it was so nonchalant and really we didn't make it a big deal. We didn't announce online. We didn't send out an email to anyone because the bigger deal you make it, the more likely you're going to get push back. And the truth is this that no other business does. Ralph's doesn't email me, "Guys, milk just went up." They just don't care. United Airlines doesn't go, "Hey, price increase our airline tickets." No one does that except for us. Again, beauty industry, we almost feel like we have to make an excuse for it and you shouldn't.

 

The basic idea is this. We would just real simply put a small sign at the front desk or an entryway if you work for yourself, just say, "We have a nominal increase coming up starting next month," on whatever date it was. That was it. And then maybe we'd put the price increase. Instead of 125 for a fill, it's going to be 145 for a fill. And then that was it. And then at the end of the appointment, when the person was wrapping up the appointment we'd say, "Oh, by the way, next time you come in, we're having a nominal price increase. The service now costs," blank dollars. And eight out of 10 would just not care because if you've gotten the right clients in your place and you've built up your reputation, they won't care. They know you're worth it.

 

Now once in a while, you'll get someone will go, "Well, I don't understand. Why are you doing that?" And we always would answer with something like this, say, "Well, for us to continue to deliver the kind of service that you've grown used to, we have to increase our prices." And no one's going to argue then at that point. Wait, well you have to, because no one wants a service discount, mean you're going to do worse work next time. Well, if I'm going to continue to give you the price you want, I have to do this appointment now in 45 minutes, which means it won't be very good. Sorry, this is what you do. You don't even debate with them. You just let them know, most of the people will just go, "Okay, I get it. Yeah, that's life, inflation, life. Life sucks." And then they go on.

 

Now, once in a blue moon, someone is going to throw a fit and that's okay, because that's a client you're trying to dump. Because you want dumps some clients because you're fully booked. And the new clients you're going to find, have no idea what your old prices were. They're going to be like, "Wait, you cost more? Yeah. That's life. Everyone does that. It's okay. For us, we never made a big deal. We didn't put any social media announcements. We didn't do an email blast. We didn't do a website blast. We just quietly did it and made no big deal and clients, amazingly. Kind of like a horse, when a horse senses that you're afraid when you're on it, it also begins to act up. The same thing happens with your client. If you are acting scared and you don't really are sure yourself, you don't feel like you're worth it or whatever then the client's going to feed on that fear and totally use it to manipulate you and twist you around their fingers, so just don't give them that option. Just tell them that's not the way I do it. No apologies, but do it nicely and quietly, is the way we did it.

Sheila Bella:

Such good advice, Paul. So good. And Ali. Ali, for those of you who are listening to the audio version of this on the podcast, I'm going to link that freebie of Ali's in the show notes, so you guys can grab it. It's an important resource. [crosstalk 01:09:29] Raise it, raise it yesterday. Okay. Thank you, Mackenzie.

Mackenzie:

Yes. Thank you so-

Sheila Bella:

Oops. Sorry. Oh no, I got rid of her too soon. So sorry. Okay. So I'm going to stay until about 10:15. If Ali or Paul, you got to go, no big deal. But I'm going to stay until about 10, 10:15. So next couple of questions. We've got Penny, Tracy and Jennifer, and we're cutting you off. No more alcohol. So Penny, do you have a question? Nice to see you again.

Penny:

Hi Sheila. Nice to see you again. I have a question and my question is, right now, I am doing microblading at my home studio. And my question to you guys is, do I need to buy insurance just in case? I mean, I'm doing a good job, but you never know.

Sheila Bella:

Yes. Yes. Yes, you do. You should. You shouldn't work on anyone until you're insured. You shouldn't even work on your best friend until you're insured. That would be my suggestion. Yeah. So I think what stops people from getting insurance is the cost, right? But you have to plan to succeed. You just need to decide you're a big time business now. It doesn't matter if you're working from home or what, you have to make business decisions based... I say this all the time, make business decisions based on what's good for you in the long run, not based on what's good for you next week. Not based on fear, what's good for you in the long run. And make business decisions based on the business that you want to be, the ultimate business you want to be, not necessarily the... Stop thinking small. Not the business you are now. Oh, I'm just a small business. But listen, you plan on succeeding, right? You want this to be your bread and butter, right Penny? You want to be a big time microblading artist, right?

Penny:

Yes. I'm sorry, I muted myself.

Sheila Bella:

No problem. Then act that way.

Penny:

No, I was just saying that because last time... So I have a family owned nail salon and before, I was just going to do microblading inside but then something happened with my dad, so I decided just to focus... Do my own separate salon. And then remember, like I said on the last podcast, I have a baby and then I took time off and then now I'm ready to start again. Now I've been doing it at home and I did see a space that I do want and I've been calling the town and applying for application and the electric permit and stuff like that. But for now, I remembered that they said that you could not... When I call one insurance like a tattoo insurance company, they said that they had to be in a building, not at home, to get insurance.

Sheila Bella:

Yeah, it depends where you are. So I have a lot of friends in Canada who work from home and it's perfectly legal there. So it just depends on your city, it depends on your state, depends on the coding of your home. Some home businesses require a separate entrance if you're going to do it from your home. So you have to check on the rules within your state when it comes to that. And yeah, plan on doing it right. Paul, you have anything to say?

Paul Leubbers:

Yeah. I mean, this is a huge one for me because I know people love to work out of home and it's great. But like Sheila says, you kind of have to take a step of faith and just begin to act the person you want to be. And if you want to be the big time person working out your home, most likely, unless you have an amazing entrance and amazing set up and one that is insurable, you're going to be limiting yourself. You're going to be slowing your growth because people are not looking for high-end services out of people's bedrooms. It's just not what they're looking for. Not the right ideal client, for the most part. There's I know some places like MyLash in Canada, you can do them on a moose if you want, I guess, but it doesn't matter.

Sheila Bella:

A moose.

Paul Leubbers:

Yeah, it's really big. It's a big service out there here. But that said, you really want to get the insurance because man oh man, are you just one bad mistake from your life being over. Because as opposed to lashes, lashes we just attach a flipping piece of plastic to someone's lashes that falls off in a month or two, but you guys are cutting people's skin. You guys are doing things that can potentially have long-term effects. And man oh man, there are some people out there just looking for any reason to shake you down and any reason to get money out of you. I mean, we've had this happen with us at-

Sheila Bella:

Oh yeah.

Paul Leubbers:

At Skincare, where we literally had a person in her heavies show up after testing to a facial and they show up and say, "Hey, we're really upset. You burned my wife's skin." Or whatever it was, skincare treatment. It wasn't that way, but. And they said, "If you give us $2,000 right now, we'll just leave." Otherwise, we don't know what's going to happen. It was very much mafia like. And thank God we said, "You know what? We have insurance. No worries. Go ahead. File that claim. Sue us." And we called their bluff and then they walked away.

 

But we had that confidence because we had insurance. I knew that no matter what they did, that our lawyers would protect us and fight this thing. It was fraud. It was stupid. And if you don't have that in your back pocket, you're going to be much more likely to be afraid of whatever someone does. And it will happen at some point. There's going to be that one person that's crazy, that shakes people down, that does this stuff. If you don't have insurance, it's going to... You're going to lose sleep over that. I mean, really, you're going to have to really find a way to make that happen. If it can't be in your home, then find a way to make it a reality. And if you're a Sheila student or whatever, you will make that a reality. I'm sure, in fact. Just follow her directions, she'll guide you to the promise land.

Sheila Bella:

Thanks, Paul. Penny, did we answer your question?

Penny:

Yes. Thank you so much. I follow everyone on stage. I'm going to leave quietly, not because I don't want to listen, but it's time for my daughter to sleep. [crosstalk 01:15:42].

Sheila Bella:

Oh, I hear her. I hear her.

Penny:

Thank you so much.

Sheila Bella:

Thank you so much, Penny. We'll talk soon.

Penny:

I love you guys. Thank you. Thank you.

Sheila Bella:

Okay.

Penny:

Goodbye.

Sheila Bella:

Bye. All right. Tracy, then Jennifer. Tracy. Go ahead, Tracy. Maybe we lost her. Jennifer?

Tracy:

Can you hear me?

Sheila Bella:

Oh no. Oh, there she is. [crosstalk 01:16:10] Oh, hi Tracy.

Tracy:

Hi. Hi.

Sheila Bella:

Hi. What's your question?

Tracy:

This is Tracy from London. Sheila, we met at [crosstalk 01:16:13].

Sheila Bella:

Hi, how are you? Yes. Hi Tracy [Stinton. 01:16:18]

Tracy:

Yeah, lovely to meet you. And lovely to see that amazing picture of you. So I've just been listening in and I thought there was some really sort of important information you were giving. There was a lovely lady who spoke about price increasing. Loved what Paul said, but I thought we could add to it because we attack it in a very different strategy. What we did was, we let our clients know a month ahead that we are going to have a price increase. And we offered them the opportunity to buy gift vouchers, not for monetary value, but for treatment value. So if they want to beat the price, they can purchase a gift voucher, or you'd call it a gift certificate, for a color boost for their eyebrows. And we'll honor that throughout the 12 months. So it's incentivizing them to stay loyal with you and to take advantage of almost like a special offer, before we put the prices up.

Sheila Bella:

Yeah. Yeah. That's another school of thought too, for sure. Another strategy.

Paul Leubbers:

I'll just jump in, Tracy. Yeah, absolutely. 100%. Nice to meet you, by the way. And we call them series here, is what we call them, at least in our business. And we'd sell a series and people would buy a package or packages of that service before the price increased, and lock in the price. And yeah, you're right. It was a great way to get people on board for six months or we had six months, we had 12 months. [inaudible 01:17:48] but the big danger of this, and this is something we did early in our business, we would do a price increase, sell a bunch of series and we would get a bank, right? We'd just get 20, 30 clients, 40 clients would buy the packages upfront, which is actually in some ways, not good because they're buying a discount price and you need to increase. But that said, we would spend the money. We'd be like, oh, woo. All right. We just made $100,000.

Sheila Bella:

That's on you, Paul.

Paul Leubbers:

And then the clients come in for a year and you're not making anything. And you're like, wait a minute. What happened? Oh my God. And so it's a real danger. When you get that money, put it in a separate bank account, call it your series or wherever you called it, in your account. And when the client comes in and cashes it in at the end of the month, you just go to that account and you pull out the money and pay yourself that for that. So that's how you protect yourself from going and getting drunk on money and just spending it all.

Tracy:

Oh Paul, the other thing that you have, you have a bookkeeper like mine, Teresa Mullins, who tells me what I'm allowed to spend and what I'm not allowed to spend.

Paul Leubbers:

Good idea.

Sheila Bella:

Paul does not listen to his bookeeper.

Tracy:

"Tracy, don't think you're buying that this month, because that money's going there."

Paul Leubbers:

Amen. There you go. You're smarter than me. This was with my own bookkeeper and I just got drunk with power. I am rich.

Tracy:

But love to everyone in the USA and everyone stay safe and hopefully, once all the borders open up again, we'd love to see you back in Europe, Sheila.

Sheila Bella:

Oh, that would be lovely. Thank you, Tracy. It was so good to hear from you. Hope you're well.

Tracy:

Take care. Take care. Bye, bye.

Sheila Bella:

Take care. Bye, bye. So sweet. Okay. Last question, Jennifer. Jennifer Cisneros.

Jennifer:

Hi Sheila. Yes, my name is Jennifer. I'm a previous student of Ali, so I just want to start off by saying, I love you guys. Love you, Ali. But I just wanted to kind of go over. For me, I'm a new lash artist. I've been lashing for about almost a year. Well a year, but with COVID and everything, so it's kind of slowed everything down. And I am subleasing right now with a friend at a studio. So my question would be, advertising on Groupon, would that be a good way to start for someone who is trying to build clientele and trying to stay booked? I mean, just to kind of start off.

Sheila Bella:

So I'm going to let Ali and Paul take their stand on this because they're from the lash world. I think it's the same though, that if you have strength in your sales, if you're strong in sales, you don't need Groupon. But I think it might be a good start for some people. I feel like I've heard that it gets out of hand. Although I do know somebody in particular, who's in my program, that swears by it. But I don't think it's necessary. I think the number one thing you should focus on is getting strong at sales, reading up on sales, getting sales training. Yes, even in the beauty industry.

Jennifer:

Okay.

Sheila Bella:

So Ali, Paul, do you have any comments?

Ali Lilly:

I kind of have an unpopular opinion about Groupon and that's, if you have nobody coming in, then take the Groupon people. Like I said, just imagine, think of them as models. You're just putting your work out there and if anything, you're practicing and not losing money. So I have also seen it get out of control. Back when I used to own a salon, I used to let the girls do Groupons if they wanted to, to get their clientele rolling and it would work. And like you said, Sheila, if you are not a salesy person, if you just are really shy from that, I think it can be helpful just bringing bodies through the door. And when you're first starting out, it's kind of like, you're almost going through an apprenticeship stage where you're really not making that amount of money or a good amount of money, but you are learning how to run your own business. So I don't think it's the worst thing that you could do, especially if you just have nobody else coming in.

Sheila Bella:

Yeah.

Ali Lilly:

It's better just to have people come through, so. But yeah, set your standards, don't let it get out of control, and maybe set a limit on how many Groupons that you take.

Jennifer:

Okay. Thank you.

Sheila Bella:

Sure.

Paul Leubbers:

Yeah. So I'll jump in, because Groupon, much like Ali... And I've actually talked to a bunch of salon owners about this and asked them, what was their success rate. And everyone I've talked to, it worked for them and it worked great for us. Groupon, while it gets a lot of hate from people who've never used it... And that's why I'm going to say most of them never used it or they used it poorly, don't understand what Groupon is. It's just your customer acquisition costs, so there is a price to acquire clients. And whatever that is, and I won't go into that now, it's going to take too long to talk about, it's okay to give that discount. It's okay to acquire clients with means like this. It is actually the best thing you can do, especially if you're slow.

 

If you don't have sales down, like Sheila says, that is the thing to learn. But while you're learning sales, you can cheat the system and just get people on your door. And if you're still learning to get faster and better your lashes, and you haven't wow'd people quite yet, then Groupon's a great way to do it. When we did Groupon back in the days, we had two ways we did it. Whenever we had a new team member back in eight, nine years ago, we would just run a Groupon and within one day, they'd be booked out for two months. And it didn't matter if they were making money, they were learning their craft. They had two to three clients a day. And that was our goal, is to just keep them busy so that they got flipping good.

 

And then what we did, which was different than a lot of people with Groupon, most Groupon clients get treated like crap. Oh my God, I have a Groupon client. Okay. Get them out. I'm not making money. I normally make 150, but I'm only making 20 cents on this client today, so screw them. I'm not going to do anything. No, no. You need to treat them like they are Beyonce and the most amazing person that's ever walked through your door, and blow them away because Groupon clients are usually treated like scabs and like scum and they are treated poorly. And then they leave you, and they go to the next cheap place, right? Because that's what they do. But when you over-deliver and you blow them away, and I know this is true because we tracked this, you got to track everything, we kept 60% of all our Groupon clients.

Sheila Bella:

Wow.

Paul Leubbers:

Imagine, 100 new clients and 60% of them stayed with you. You're going to be booked. You're done. You don't have to work anymore. Not work, but you're in place now. Now you just can build off the referrals and you're going to be great. So Groupons can be an amazing tool. But that said, the loop they're talking about is, you don't want to get into that discount loop. And this is where this kind of relates to selling series and all that, or packages. If you sell, say 100 Groupons and you're booked for two months, that money you just made, don't get crazy and spend it all.

 

You got to pinch every dime, every penny and stay within your budget and make that money drag out because what people do once they get into Groupon, is that next month comes, oh crap, I don't have any money. Time to run a Groupon. And they run another Groupon, and then they spend all that money. And then they get stuck in this loop where they're living Groupon to Groupon, and it is an endless spiral to death. And so you don't want to do that. You want to just do it once, get the big push and the next time I would do it, is if you hire someone underneath you to work with you, and then use that as a way to get them busy.

 

So just put into your mind, you're not making money off of this. You're just learning your craft and you're building up your speed and you're building up reputation with clients, that eventually will become a long-term client. For instance, I mean, if you think about it, let's say you get only 25 bucks for the new set and the client usually would get 150, but if they stay with you for the next 10 years, it's called the lifetime value of a client. If they stay for 10 years, what did you really lose? I mean, in Tuscany's case, she has some clients who've now spent over $50,000 on her. And a couple of them, by the way, are Groupon clients from back in 2000 and whatever. I mean, way back.

Sheila Bella:

Paul, this is a course. This is a course. Thank you. Let's talk.

Jennifer:

Thank you.

Sheila Bella:

You kept 60% of your Groupon clients, that's amazing. This is a course. Lets talk.

Paul Leubbers:

Well, it is. You're right, it is.

Sheila Bella:

That's amazing, you guys.

Paul Leubbers:

It's not public yet, but I've taught that before, a couple of times. Yeah.

Sheila Bella:

Oh my gosh. That's incredible. That's incredible work. Amazing perspective. Thank you guys for joining us today, for booked solid beauty biz. Okay guys, we're going to take a screenshot. We're taking a selfie, so everybody remember to smile for the camera. Guys, if you end up posting this on Instagram, please do and please try to follow so we can repost it and we can dive deeper with you and we can get to know you in the DMs. Again, please follow all the moderators and you know what? Follow each other. Follow each other. Clubhouse is a place to socialize and to make great connections.

 

I just want to thank all my guests today. Spa Strong, Ali, Paul, and Tuscany for the picture. Thank you so much for joining us today. And if you guys like this, let us know. Give us feedback. And if you have any ideas for future topics on Clubhouse, let me know. My Instagram handle is @realsheilabella. And like I said, this is a live podcast recording and the audio version of this will be on Pretty Rich podcast on iTunes, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Google play. And that's my spiel. Thank you guys.

Paul Leubbers:

Thank you guys. Loved it.

Ali Lilly:

Thank you, Sheila. Nice to talk to you guys. Bye.

Sheila Bella:

Hey, thanks so much for listening to today's episode of Pretty Rich podcast. If you want to continue the conversation longer, check me out on Instagram, it's my favorite place to connect with you guys @realsheilabella. I'm happy to answer any of your questions or simply to chat and get to know you better. And if you end up doing something super awesome, like screenshotting this episode and reposting that on your stories, that would put the biggest smile on my face. Don't forget to tag me.

 

I appreciate every share and love feedback from my listeners. Also, do you have my number? Do you have my number, because if we're going to keep hanging out, you should probably have my number. So you can actually text me. That's right. You can text me at (310) 388-4588. And if you're sick and tired of doing business alone and you're interested in accelerating your success by hiring a business coach or joining our mentorship program called Pretty Rich Bosses, go ahead and just apply. Why not? Check it out. Go to sheilabella.com/apply and we'll schedule a free strategy session with either myself or one of my advisors. And of course, I got to include my kids. So here, to send us off, are Beau and Gray.

Beau:

[inaudible 01:29:24] Grey, say, share with your friends.

Grey:

Share with friends.

Beau:

Please review my mommy on iTunes.

Grey:

Review mommy iTunes.

Beau:

Thanks for listening.

Grey:

Thanks for listening.

Sheila Bella:

Hey Beau, can you tell everybody what our family motto is?

Beau:

Yeah. I can do hard things.

Sheila Bella:

I can do hard things. Good job, buddy.

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