Business Insights from My Salon Software – How to… unlock the power of courses – #2 2022

| February 20, 2022

Business Insights #2 2022

2022 – #2 Getting Things Done: How to…unlock the power of courses


If there is one thing that is certain in these trying times, it’s that we need to establish guaranteed turnover and bums on our seats. One sure way to do that, is to sell your clients a course of treatments.

If they normally come to your salon twice a month for example; a blow dry, sell them a course of 4 blow drys at a discounted rate. That way you know that they will definitely come twice as much and this will have an increased impact on your normal turnover.

Your client paid upfront for their services which means every time they come into your salon to redeem one of her sessions in her course, there is no payment to be made, as she paid up front. The thing is… people are natural buyers. Subconsciously they want to buy something and not paying for the service deprives them from the feeling of buying, this in turn will then open the door for selling home care to your clients more often or even more services or products.

Selling, for example, a course for result driven treatments like slimming treatments or facial peels, that need to be administered to the client once a week or every second week and that needs to be completed in a certain time frame to get the desired result, will need to be enforced. You can put an expiration date on the course, to make sure the clients receive the right number of treatments in the correct time frame to produce the optimum results.

You will have to make sure you have clear signage to inform your clients about the expiration date. So, if the client does not utilize their sessions within the designated timeframe, they will forfeit their remaining sessions. This will ensure that the client will follow the treatment plan and receive the best results possible. It will prevent the client coming for their treatments only every month or once every 3 months, instead of every week or every second week and then they complain and state that the treatments do not work, which would not be true if the treatments were performed at the frequency explained. So, an expiration date can be of enormous benefit for both the client and the business.

Examples of courses would be:

(The terms for purchasing a course are that your client purchase and pay for the course upfront at a discounted rate, to avoid paying the discounted rate every time they visit for a service which defeats the purpose. You need to receive the payment upfront)

  • Course of 5, 8 or 10 Sessions of Blow Drys
  • Course of 5, 10, 15 or 20 Sunbed Sessions
  • Course of Specialized Slimming Treatment Sessions
  • Course of 3 or 6 Laser Treatment Sessions for specific areas
  • Course of 5 or more Massage Sessions
  • Any treatment you would want to sell a course of…

Selling the courses is easy. It is managing them for each client that can become cumbersome and often causes confusion in the tracking of how many sessions have been used. Especially, if your client has purchased more than one course. A lot of the time, recording a session used can be forgotten and the client can end up receiving an extra treatment for free, or worse more than one treatment for free. Or the client has used her sessions up and is insisting that she does have more and you cannot prove that she doesn’t or when you use the card system, this card can get lost if the reception keeps it, which can cost the business a lot of money, or the client forgets to bring it with.

Poor management of these courses can end up costing the business money, instead of generating profit.

My Salon Software has a very advanced courses and sessions management function. It is easy to follow and keep a record of all the different courses sold to clients and tracking of their sessions used. You can also provide your client with a courses statement.

Don’t work hard, work smart!

For more information: | 064 504 6001 | 083 650 0952

Business Insights #1 2022

2022 – #1 How to… create a set of budgets

There is a saying that, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.”

No business that wants to be profitable should open their doors if they don’t have a plan of action. An essential way to run a profitable business is to work with a set of budgets. We’ve all heard of the concept and I’m sure some salons and spas do work with a set of budgets. The whole idea of budgeting is to:

  1. Achieve turnover goals
  2. Control costs
  3. Make a profit

… and profit is what’s left from your turnover after all your costs are paid.

There are two approaches to setting budgets depending on whether you are a new start-up business or if you are and existing business with a trading history.


For a new business budgeting for the above should have been a part of your business plan. Otherwise how will you know how much turnover you need to generate to cover your costs – your break-even point.

Many of your start-up costs such as rent are fixed by your lease, and the prices you will be charging in order to generate turnover will depend on the area you are in and the target market you are aiming for. While others costs such as salaries, stock purchases and operating costs need to be estimated until you get actual figures.

For example:




The same process applies with an existing business only now you have historical figures on which to base your turnover and expenditure projections (budgets) as well as the previous year’s figure in order to see actual turnover growth.


This is a very simple and yet useful approach to budgeting that gives you more control on both generating turnover as well as controlling costs.

Create a set of budgets for each month of the year.

This exercise can be made even easier by using Excel or the Budgeting/Income Statement with My Salon Software which can be set up to monitor the month, the quarter or YTD (year to date).

For more information: | 064 504 6001 | 083 650 0952


Getting Things Done: Make 2022 The Year of Action

For centuries people have strived to understand how to become happier, wealthier and generally more successful in the things they do. Of all the disciplines that form the foundation of success, none plays a more important role than Philosophy.

Philosophy leads to a better understanding of the what’s, why’s and how’s of life. Simply stated, an action causes a reaction which in turn leads to a result.

It is no secret that we are in business to make money (the result) , however, the size of the result (profit) depends on a better understanding of three things – what it is we want to achieve, why we want to achieve this result and how we should go about achieving the result.

Most people understand the ‘what’ part of the equation. What do we want to achieve – these may fall into material, emotional, spiritual and intellectual results – all necessary to lead a fulfilling life?

The ‘why’ part of the equation is also easy to understand. It makes sense to live a healthy lifestyle, be successful at work and enjoy successful relationships with family, friends, work colleagues and oneself.

My Salon Software addresses the ‘What’ by creating a business system that correlates all day to day activities into Business Intelligence.  The ‘Why’ is because if you don’t have business intelligence you are doing business in the dark. The ‘How’ is the key to success.

Using the what, why, philosophy is the best way to keep staff focussed, motivated and productive. We’ve all been to seminars, and attended courses that address the what’s and the why’s but very seldom provide the how’s.

During 2022  we plan to change that and all our monthly blogs will focus on the HOW. For example – how can I see if I am overspending on stock or, how can I better manage my greatest asset, my client database or, how can I motivate staff to become better achievers. These will be included in our 2022 Blog Series

In 2021 we gave you “Business Insight”. In 2022 we will show you how to  “Turn Ideas into Action”.

For more information:

Aletta – | 064 504 6001

Terry – | 083 650 0952

This blog in one of a series of business insights which can accessed on If you have any questions or specific requests please email




Business Insights #19 2021

Fire Up Your Year End Business

As we go into the final two months of the year it might be best not to reflect too much on the kind of year we have had in 2021. Rather focus on ways to make the November to January ‘season’ as lucrative as possible — and expect that trend to continue into 2022.

Before I start with some tips and Ideas to optimise your turnover it is good to bear in mind the following:

  1. There will always be a need for hairdressing and beauty services. Looking and feeling good about oneself is the best way to handle stress while dealing with day to day issues.
  2. With people spending less money on travel and entertainment they have more money to spend on themselves.
  3. Hair and beauty are services that require personal and individual expertise and will therefore never be available on-line.

Get into the spirit of the season by accessorising your salon with festive displays. All the laws of the universe show that like-energy attracts like-energy so, if your salon generates good business energy then it will attract more business.

There are only so many days left between now and the time clients will be going away and before Christmas festivities begin so schedule appointments for your top clients. In this sense you need to proactively sell/reserve appointments for your most important people to make sure they are not disappointed.  Coastal salons pray for holiday-makers to arrive still needing chemical appointments because they didn’t have time to get them done before going on holiday.

Plan your staffing levels to make sure staff are not taking leave over the busy season. Double check your stock levels to ensure you don’t run out of stock of popular items and buy in gift packs selectively. Try not to over-stock because the longer it takes you to use up that stock the less profit you make on it.

Promote gift giving ideas to your clients. This doesn’t just have to be a retail product — gift vouchers and make-overs are under-rated as gifting ideas in hair salons compared to beauty  and are always appreciated by the receiver.

An added-value promotion that helps kick-start the new year is to offer free or discounted treatments to clients when they either buy retail  (up-sell them to 2 or 3 products) or when they have chemical services done, by offering a free treatment in January, when their hair is probably going to need it, especially if they have just returned from a beach holiday.

Get ready to make 2022 the best year ever!


For more information on Try-Before-You-Buy contact

Aletta – | 064 504 6001

Terry – | 083 650 0952



Business Insights #18

Fear of Change

There are only two natural fears in life – the fear of falling and the fear of loud noises. All other fears are a result of having learned to fear them either through education or by personal experience. For businesses, by far the most threatening, is the fear of change. This is because change is constant, in fact change is the only thing in life that is guaranteed.

So the question is not are things changing but rather how do we respond to change? Understanding the Serenity prayer helps. ‘God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference’. The opposite of courage is fear and in the words of Franklin D. Roosevelt, the 32nd President of the USA “…the only thing we have to fear is… Fear itself !

I remember the story of a man walking past a house veranda on which sat a man and lying in front of him was a dog. It was obvious that the dog wasn’t happy as it kept whining and making unhappy noises. When asked what was wrong with the dog the man replied that the dog was laying on a nail. I said, surely that must hurt, so why doesn’t the dog move. And he replied that it wasn’t hurting bad enough YET to make him move!

Unfortunately a lot of us are like that. We know there are problems in our business or that some things could be done better but, because of the fear of change, a fear of failing, a fear of moving away from our comfort zone, we just ‘don’t get off the nail’. We think that moaning and complaining about it is actually doing something, helloooo! It is the definition of insanity to believe that you can do the same thing over again and get a different result.

However, philosophy aside, change for the sake of change can be both confusing for people and could ultimately damage your business. The motivation for change should always be in order ‘to make good, better’. And the opportunities for change are abundant. All you have to know/think/believe is that making a change is going to ‘make good, better’. The more detailed information you have about your business the easier it is to identify areas that need changing.

In a previous blog we discussed the necessity to periodically ‘re-invent’ yourself, something you will not be able to if you suffer from the fear of change. As a salon software/business solutions provider we are often confronted by prospects who are frightened by change — whether it is to go from a paper system to digital, or to upgrade from their existing salon system to one that will ‘make their successful business, better,’ it is the fear of change that provides the greatest challenge.

At MySalon Software we understand the fear-of-change  which is why we invite salons considering changing the way they run their businesses to ‘try-before-you-buy’. After all, nothing ventured, nothing gained. And fortune favours the bold!

For more information on Try-Before-You-Buy contact

Aletta – | 064 504 6001

Terry – | 083 650 0952


Please feel free to contact us about this or any other challenges you may be experiencing in your business.

This blog is one of a series of business insights which can be accessed on If you have any questions or specific requests please email




Avoiding Conflict

Avoiding Conflict

Conflict in the workplace, or at home, or anywhere is both ugly and destructive. Unfortunately conflict is inevitable when people are under pressure and from time to time, other people’s opinions differ from their own. In a business, conflict can totally destroy the ambience and relaxation that clients come to hair and beauty salons and spas for in the first place. Conflict arises whenever individuals have different values, opinions, needs, interests and are unable to find a middle way.

Conflict resolution is often called conflict management however, I believe conflicts need to be resolved, not just managed. And with the right leadership approach, 90% of conflicts could be avoided in the first place.

How to deal with conflict. Well, I suppose the best way to win an argument is to not have one in the first place. Easier said than done? Here are a few things you can do to actually minimise the causes of conflict.

Create a strong Salon or Spa Culture. These are the salon’s rules, regulations, values, philosophies, mission statement, policies and procedures. These are the things that make your business great. Great for whom? Everybody, every stakeholder that has an interest in the success of your business – your clients, your staff, owners, product suppliers, even SARS.

During disagreements in the salon or spa, protecting these values becomes the main priority and staff need to understand exactly how important the salon or spa culture is. Once a business is opened it has a right to be successful. Exactly the same rights that staff are entitled to – the right to be happy, the right to their own opinion and the right to be successful. However, nobody has the right to deny others of their right to be happy and successful.

Before entering the salon or spa, staff need to leave all their personal “issues” on an imaginary hook outside the salon or spa and enter the salon everyday with the primary thought “what more can I do to make the business more successful?” This shows the salon or spa has a strong salon or spa culture. If staff continue to have a difference of opinion just send them to a coffee shop until they can agree on something. Teach the John Maxwell’s 101% theory in building relationships i.e. find just one thing to like about the other person and put 100% of your effort behind that one thing.

Regular staff meetings to discuss the state of the business is not only a good idea, it is essential to keep everybody on the same page by sharing the successes of the salon or spa as well as areas for improvement. Staff meetings should not just be about housekeeping – controlling costs, punctuality etc, they should also be brainstorming sessions where everybody has to contribute. Neither should they be bitching sessions where individuals are picked on for wrong-doing. The golden rule for respect-based leadership is “complement in public but criticise in private.”

Another technique for avoiding conflict is by having a ‘Beefs and Bouquets’ component to your staff meeting. Allow each staff member to voice one complaint about something they are not happy with about something or someone in the salon… However, they must also voice something they like about that same person or thing.

Positive feedback from clients always boosts morale during a meeting. Encourage clients to comment on their salon experience in a ‘Compliments & Complaints’ book and get each staff member to take turns reading the comments to the rest of the staff.

The most successful way to pre-empt conflict in the salon or spa is by having regular one-on-one sessions with every staff member. This is a fool-proof strategy for dealing with under-performance, unsatisfactory behaviour and disciplinary issues.

Conflict often comes from misunderstanding. For example, a staff member might think they are not being given a fair share of walk-in business or that they are not being paid fairly. This is where KPI reports from My Salon Software provide the facts of the matter. KPI’s or Key Performance Indicators show a complete picture of your business – by staff member, by department, by day and by date (monthly, quarterly, annually).

These are just a few ideas that will assist in 90% of avoidable conflict.


Please feel free to contact us about this or any other challenges you may be experiencing in your business.

This blog is one of a series of business insights which can be accessed on If you have any questions or specific requests please email


Business Insights #7


Of all the dynamics essential for running a successful business, the most important is growing a clientele (regular, money-in-the-bank clients.)

For me this is the fun part of the business, it’s like collecting friends on Facebook or having lots of people on your birthday list. Each new client you add to your clientele is a celebration to the success of your business.

However, in the real world, getting clients and keeping clients are two different things. There are four stages to growing a clientele.

Attracting clients – getting new clients is not as difficult as it sounds. Promotional activity, social media, good signage, networking and referrals provide a great source of attracting clients to your salon. In this four-stage-process it is vital to note how you got this client into the salon, what we call ‘client source’. Good software will ask you the source of new clients and this information will show you from where you are getting new clients. With My Salon Software the system automatically recognises a client’s cell number so that, working on the principle that you can’t be be a first time client twice, when she returns the client status changes the status to ‘regular’.

Getting clients to come back to the salon – the most obvious way is to give them a reason to want to. Treat first time clients as the start of a long journey you would like to have with them. Always plant a seed called ‘next’ – what is the next thing you would like to do for them, when is the next time you would like to see them in the salon, what is the next step to improving their maintenance programme at home. Or simply offering first time cut & blow clients a second blow dry ‘on the house’ if they come in within the next week for you to see how she is enjoying her hair.

Growing clients – it’s no secret, the only way to grow turnover is to get more clients, get existing clients to buy more of what you have to offer (upselling), or keep putting your prices up. We have looked at ways to get clients into the salon and to just keep putting your prices up to generate turnover is suicide. So it makes sense that we focus on growing clients. The operative word for this is consultation. Consultation sounds like something you do (a noun) however to be really effective it needs to be a way of doing things (a verb) during which you take your client on a journey of discovery to see what is going to be the ‘next’ service or product the client will buy.  Discover what problems, needs or desires your client has and to then make a professional recommendation to satisfy that problem, need or desire. It might be colour fade or hair loss or just generally bad hair condition. Once you have clients buying all areas of your offering the average spend of each client goes up and clients become more loyal to your salon. My Salon Software allows you assign clients to groups and to see the number of clients growing in each group.

Losing clients – getting and growing clients is one thing but holding on the them year after year can be a challenge, especially if you don’t know how many you are losing. To address the problem client you need to understand the problem.

Unfortunately clients die or move to another area or country and we can’t do much about that. However, more that 75% of clients change salons because they no longer feel they are getting the service they expect or feel your services are simply not worth what you’re charging.

There are two ways to gauge the number of clients you lose over a given period of time.  Firstly, on My Salon Software the system can show you a breakdown of how many clients came to the salon broken down by source, by month. So, if you had 100 clients in month one and got 5 new first-time clients a month and kept all 100 of your original clients you should see 115 clients coming in in month 4. This estimation is more accurate the longer the period of time you monitor. If the 15 first-time client are included in month 4 then you are losing existing clients.

The other is to generate a report of your top spending clients.  This report sorts your clients by spend starting from highest spender to lowest. The value in this report is that it shows you the date of clients’ last visit. So, if you see that some of your top spenders haven’t been to the salon for 30, 60, 90 days etc you have the opportunity to follow up with them.

If there are take-aways from this blog they are:

  1. Clients go where they’re invited, stay where they’re wanted and grow where they’re consulted.
  2. Always treat clients as though they were first-time clients.
  3. Remember clients don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care

Making you think! 

By Terry Mile





This blog in one of a series of business insights which can accessed on If you have any questions or specific requests please email

Category: Spa Articles

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