Peter Coppola, who has owned 30 successful salons in his career, with the latest in Boca Raton, Florida, and has started his own self-named product line, says being a great stylist, colorist or technician is not enough.
âThere are a few key areas to focus on when opening your first salon.â
The first, he says, is the old real estate maxim of âlocation, location, location.â
âFind a location with excellent visibility and a good traffic patternâespecially important for a first-time salon owner who may not yet have a long-standing client base,â says Coppola. âMake sure there is ample parking near the salon. Clients expect convenience and donât want to walk blocks on a rainy day after getting the hair done.â
Next, get the right staff, for your clients and for you. âSurround yourself with individuals who inspire you, are open to new ideas and are team players,â he says, âvery smart and talented individuals who know more about the business than you do.â
On the financial side, Coppola recommends starting out with enough capital to not only run the salon but also to invest in advertising, marketing and business-building activities for at least a year.
Choose your partners deliberately, he advises. âLook for manufacturers and brands that provide ongoing, top-notch support, education and training for you and your staff. Take advantage of the programs offered.â
Coppola says that a salon owner has to have three âDsâ to succeed in todayâs market: âA strong Desire to go into business; utmost Dedication to your profession; and the Discipline needed.â
The personal rewards of owning a salon are outstanding, he says. âAfter all these years, I still wake up every morning and canât wait to get to work!â