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With all of the clients who sit in your chair, you’re bound to come across a few (or many) strong business relationships—they even can become friends after a while. As stylists, you touch the lives of your clients in big and little ways every day—why not find ways to connect with them a little better?

This was the theme for the Business Forum at L’Oreal Professionnel’s global community event for emerging salon owners and hairdressers. International hairdressers Jennifer Macdougall, Jo Blackwell-Preston and Heath Grout shared their latest hair trends and techniques in front of 2,500 worldwide attendees.

Even though the event is over, MODERN brings you those tips! Here, NYC Celebrity Hairstylist Jennifer Macdougall (@JenniferMacDougall) and CEO of DopDop NYC Jo Blackwell-Preston (@BlackwellJo) give you advice on how to better connect with your clients:

1. Teach your guests how to recreate their hairstyle at home.

2. Ask questions, use eye contact, listen and sit at eye level when consulting.

3. Suggest change, even if it's subtle changes like cutting a new fringe or adding balayage.

4. Take before and after photos!

5. Create how-to videos/posts on social media using your favorite hair products and showing your clients how to use the products.

6. Research the trends and share them with your clients in-person, through social media and email.

7. Tag your customers so that they know you’re communicating with them (even when you’re not). For every person that left a comment, comment back to let them know you're with them.

8. Hold client appreciation nights. "On the third Thursday of every month, we have an event with a DJ, sparkling wine, appetizers and giveaways sponsored by our brands. It provides another way to talk and connect with our clients," says Blackwell-Preston.

9. Allow clients to show off their items in your space. If they have an art opening, are in a play, etc. – go to as many of their events as possible. It’s about being involved in what they’re involved in–they support us by coming in, but when we support them by going to their events it leaves a deep impression. Artists supporting artists.

10. Introduce clients to other clients, facilitate relationships and allow them to connect in your salon. A personal recommendation from business-to-business is a big endorsement that enhances your relationship.

11. Hold events for celebratory milestones. "Dop Dop Salon’s 20th anniversary is coming up, so every third Thursday of the month will hold a different event than ones we’ve done in the past," says Blackwell-Preston.

12. Promotion on Facebook and IG with video content is key to gain new customers. "Since we’re based in NYC, we go all over Soho with our cards and personally introduce ourselves to vendors in Soho and offer them a discount, which makes them more inclined to visit us after associating a name with a brand," says Blackwell-Preston.

13. Gilt is a great referral – it’s where savvy women go to try new ideas. The customers who show up are looking for a new place to go and have no idea how to get it. "All of our artist profiles are on Gilt, allowing possible clients to check us out and request certain stylists," says Blackwell-Preston. 

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