SALON TODAY: Where do you see the biggest opportunities for aspiring salon owners/stylists to build financial security in today’s professional beauty industry?
Carranza: “As we discussed, there are a number of big opportunities available to salons and stylists because of their unique relationship to the consumer, but there are a few requirements you have to have. First, you have to have a business model that is focused on a great product that is based on service and the consumer experience. I’m constantly amazed by how many salons try to be everything to everyone, but what they end up being is somewhere in the murky middle. Secondly, you have to have quality in the workplace and in your staff that is paramount—from the receptionist at the front desk to the assistant to the technical expert in the salon. With the dynamic that’s going onto today with the booth rental phenomenon, it’s challenging to assemble, keep and grow talent in the salon. And, thirdly, you have to create opportunity by finding and leveraging the enduring relationships your salon has with clients. What’s your point of view, and how does it drive all aspects of your salon? It’s about wants, not always about needs. They are coming to you because they have a choice, and you want them to feel they can’t live without you.”
SALON TODAY: What is one of the biggest trends you and your new team see in beauty and business that you will encourage your network of prospective salons/stylists to embrace?
Carranza: “The dynamic that information is available 24/7 to the end consumer, and that social media is a powerful venue for recommendation and advocacy. I think about last night’s Oscars and how Twitter, Instagram and Facebook feeds were all abuzz with unprecedented amount of activity—it’s a dynamic not a lot of owners are leveraging in a strategic way. I’ve been impressed with what LBP has done in that environment.”
SALON TODAY: How would you describe the luxury beauty consumer?
Carranza: “She tends to spend in the top two percent in skin, hair, cosmetics, nail and dental categories, and she tends to be a fairly frequent buyer—online, in salon and in department stores. She can be loyal to specific brands, but she’s also always interested in what’s new. She’s very well represented across hair, skin, cosmetics and nail categories, and her age can run the gamut—with expenditures on categories varying by age and growing as she ages. She’s geographically dispersed, and she tends to spend a healthy percentage of her disposable income on these beauty categories.”