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Posted By:beachblondie on: 3/28/2006 6:28:09 AM


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beachblondie
Posts: 2

lost a longtime client and don't know why
Posted: Tuesday, March 28, 2006 6:28:09 AM

I believe I lost a client who I've had for about 15 years. I highlighted/cut her back in the middle of January and had her re-booked for a trim before she went on a trip. She ALWAYS pre-booked.  Her son is a client of mine also.

Anyway, about a week before her appointment, she called to say she needed to cancel. I asked when she wanted to reschedule for and she said she'd call me when she returned from her trip. It wasn't like her not to re-schedule, but I didn't think much of it, since she was my client for so long.

Then in the meantime, her son also had an appointment, and he never showed up for it. I tried to call him, thinking he forgot, but he never called back.  She also never called to reschedule her appointment. I called her last evening, and she never called me back. It's so not like her. I have no idea what I could have done wrong, she seemed happy as usual with her hair before she left my salon the last time.

I know it sounds like I'm making too much of this, but I'm self-employed with a salon right here in my home with a loyal clientele I've had for years. I'm not accustomed to losing clients. I've called her once and got no response, should I just let it go and concentrate on my existing people? I don't want to seem like I'm desperate by attempting to contact her again, but I'd really like to know what happened. Please advise. TIA,

Jen



coloru2
Posts: 504
Silver Member

Posted: Tuesday, March 28, 2006 7:48:24 AM
I totally understand, but you need to let it go. You showed your concern by calling, but they are sending their message loud and clear by not returning the call. They may return at a later date, but not likely. Personally, I think they are cowards for not explaining their departure. I know they don't owe you one, but they've been with you for 15 years, so it's a special case. Remember, they are not your friends, they are clients. It's not personal, it's business. Even if it's something you did, it's their problem, not yours. You'll get someone to replace them, and you'll move on. Right now, it hurts, I know, but believe this fact: Every single stylist out there, successful or not, loses clients for a variety of reasons. Every one of us. Don't lose sleep over it, or your confidence.

beachblondie
Posts: 2

thanks
Posted: Tuesday, March 28, 2006 8:50:52 AM

Those were the words I needed to hear. With some of my clients, the line between friendship and client is a little more blurred, but fortunately that wasn't the situation here. She was one of those who didn't really discuss a whole lot of personal issues with me, it was all about the service. So it is easier to let it alone. Her sister and nieces are still clients of mine, and they have appointments this week. I'm not going to mention anything to them when they come in, unless she brings it up herself, but even then I won't fish for info. 

  Thanks so much for the inspiring words. It's times like this when I miss the comraderie of being in a larger salon. There's no one to vent to (except my dog! LOL) Take care,

Jen



CopaGirl
Posts: 210
Bronze Member

Posted: Wednesday, March 29, 2006 4:38:08 PM
BEACHBLONDIE-Sometimes people are wanting a change and an opportunity comes along and they try someone else a few times. I have had this happen several times and some have returned. Give it a couple of months and then send a postcard saying "I haven't seen you in awhile, I'd love to do your hair again!" Enclose a little discount in case money was an issue and she may return after trying someone else for awhile and deciding she likes your styling better. If you are professional in your card she won't feel weird about returning. BTW- I routinely send out these cards to people that haven't been in for 6 months and usually get some back! Good luck!

mina2
Posts: 432
Silver Member

Posted: Wednesday, March 29, 2006 6:14:45 PM
no discount- that is desparate.  Call her on the phone.

habib
Posts: 427
Silver Member

Posted: Thursday, March 30, 2006 4:25:04 AM

Copagirl, just out of curiosity, What DO you do if money was "an issue"? What if the client tells you that it was/is?


Do you continue to discount her services just so she can come to you all the time? Or do they get the discount the one time and then leave again? because I feel quite frankly: what's the point? if it is a money issue?



The stylist expertise and execution of the service will never be able to hold them as a client if they can't pay and is it really worth discounting an old client when actually they have made room for you to gain a new client who will pay you what you deserve for your services?



If you keep the old client who pays less because the stylist discounted for them, it is inevitable that several things will happen: 1) you may have to turn away new client/work for more money because you couldn't take them at the time they wanted which coincidentally happens to be the spot with the lesser paying client booked. 2) Your client's financial situation gets better....But do you really think they will tell you that?  No. of course they won't. Someday you will start seeing that she's looking better, driving something nicer, having work done on her home, wearing new clothes or jewelry. Yep! It's inevitable that you will come to resent her and your financial agreement.



One of my most faithful clients left me one time over financial issues. I heard that she started getting her hair cut by her sister who has a flowbee (ugh! remember THOSE?!?!) I couldn't believe it. I got kind of annoyed because I would have discounted her had she asked instead of losing her completely. She never gave me the chance.....luckily for me! That was my mentality, I figured anything is better than nothing and that's not necesarily always true here.  And you know what? It wasn't long before I filled her seat with a new client for the same services at a higher price. Then half a year later she calls me up and says I was going to my sister and her flowbee, but my hair just looks awful. Can you get me in any where please? I did and no discount and she was pleased to be back. It took 2 haircuts to fix the flowbee mess. I'm glad I didn't follow my initial impulse to call and discount.



Definitely do call or send a card, and if they respond...Great! but if they don't? So what! go on, If you are good, it shouldn't take long to fill the spot again.




So I completely agree with Mina, No discounts!



habib
Posts: 427
Silver Member

Posted: Thursday, March 30, 2006 4:34:50 AM
ugh! sorry about the gaps btween my writings....I can't fix it!

misty
Posts: 175
Bronze Member

How's that saying go.........
Posted: Thursday, March 30, 2006 6:59:02 AM
"If you love them-let them go------if they love you --they will come back---if not then...............     ahhhhh-you know the rest!!    Habib-that was a good post.  I have had that several times---they will leave because of the prices, think they can save money else where, then after a a few times---tada-they are BACK!!!   They do come back sooner or later,  this is where talent, quality service, and your people skills fall into play. Sometimes I don't feel it's a good idea to call either.  It seems desperate and makes them very uncomfortable.  And if that happens-they may never come back.  TIme can heal a lot.   I won't use the word "professionalism".   Hhhhhmmmm...  perhaps we could state it as....."The overall knowledge and ability to carry yourself in a manner that is suitable and/or desirable to the general public in today's society".     THat works!

CopaGirl
Posts: 210
Bronze Member

Posted: Thursday, March 30, 2006 9:55:47 AM
The discount is meant to be a one time only discount so they can come back and see what they have been missing. After you fix their possibly messed up hair, hopefully they will remember how great you were and decide it is worth the money. I agree that you shouldn't keep discounting them! Also, I am still in the process of building my clientelle so I am more forgiving than if I had a full book.

coloru2
Posts: 504
Silver Member

Posted: Friday, March 31, 2006 8:16:27 AM
Yes, those who don't yet have a full book, will do things differently than those who have full book.

mina2
Posts: 432
Silver Member

Posted: Friday, March 31, 2006 12:47:13 PM
copa girl- they already know what they are missing if they have already been to you.  Discounting your services makes you look desparate and it also makes your services appear that they are worth less than what you are charging...

jilly61
Posts: 3

Posted: Thursday, March 12, 2009 11:51:17 AM
I'm going through this right now. My week is really slow. I hate it!! I had surgery in jan. And some of my faithful long time clients, have not come back, and it really does affect me. It's easy to say let it go, but it hurts me deep, where i think about it in the middle of the night. I haven't run an add in a long time, but i did now this week. I hope something happens. I have had my own salon since 94. Any other suggestions?? Thanks jill :)

heatherdazy
Posts: 319
Silver Member

Posted: Friday, March 13, 2009 11:45:28 PM
Do you continue to discount her services just so she can come to you all the time? Or do they get the discount the one time and then leave again? because I feel quite frankly: what's the point? if it is a money issue?


If it is a money issue and I know it, I let them know that I offer discounts for sending in referrals.

Of course, I'm still building so getting 4-5 referrals is a big deal for me, especially if they're all getting color.

Once they start doing better financially, they'll either decide it's easier just to pay full price than to send in even more people, or they'll keep advertising for me. It's win-win, imo.

mslynn
Posts: 58

lost client
Posted: Saturday, March 14, 2009 5:05:04 PM
i understand how you feel. i have lost a few clients just recently. i did call one, and she never called me back. i guess when you have been doing their hair and their families for a long time, it hurts. not only the pockbook.i have become attached to some of the ones i have done for years and they just drop out of sight. i have learned to stop taking it personally, because this same thing happened a few years ago. they would dissappear for a year and bam, one day call and act as though they had never stopped coming. take the advise of the other person, you will gain new clients to replace those. it probably won't be long before they will be back. i had two just three weeks ago, call and say their hair finally grew back from a messed up haircut and they would never try that again.i finally learned to just let it be, and quit worrying, it will work out. good luck