As a seasoned permanent makeup professional with over four years of experience, I can attest to the fact that building a strong brand image is essential to charging premium prices for your services. While delivering beautiful work is certainly important, it is only the basic foundation of your business. To truly thrive in the industry, you must also engage in brand-building activities that create a self-sustaining business over the long term.
Your brand image is the perception that people have of your business, which is shaped by their experiences, your reputation, and the overall impression you create. That’s why I would like to share some of my top tips for building a strong brand that has helped me to command premium prices and reduce struggle in client conversions.
In the beginning, it’s important to dedicate time to honing your craft and building confidence in your abilities. It’s also essential to take some time o determine your passion and dedication for this work as opening a physical space requires a long-term commitment. it takes a few months for the realisation of how much you truly love this work and everything else that comes along. Remember, in business, there is no switching off and no disconnecting. Be sure first that you really love this field enough to do this day and night, and once you are sure of your skills and your commitment to this craft, then I would highly recommend opening an aesthetic space in a respectable location. Since Permanent Makeup itself is a luxury service, creating a feminine and decorative vibe in your studio instead of a plain clinical space would help to attract the right kind of clientele.
Invest time in Learning Visual Aesthetic / Graphic skills: In this era of social media, your virtual presence is everything. You can’t possibly outsource it all, it would be very expensive yet not to your likings. You must learn to create right lighting in the studio for most aesthetic pictures, invest in high quality phones & learn multiple camera settings, have dedicated photo walls in your space that inspires your clients to take selfies for their personal social handles, understand the basics of photo editing to adjust the brightness or clarity of any picture, learn to create aesthetic image collages, and most importantly – get really really comfortable in speaking to the camera. Which brings us to the next point.
Be Out there, Every other day – Think – why is the influencer industry booming, what skills do these influencers have that makes them so successful at such a young age – it’s a very easy skill of holding a structured conversation- except they have the talent of speaking to the camera. Videos have already taken over the entire marketing landscape. If you invest 30 mins everyday to aesthetic & engaging video making skills, no one can stop you from becoming one of the leaders in your niche. Do not hesitate in buying subscriptions of popular editing apps that can make these tasks quick and easy for you. It all might sound scary and uphill at first – but it’s all part of a bundle deal of owning a business. You might be a brow shaping expert and create gorgeous brows better than anyone in your city, but the cake will be taken by your competition who put more effort into making better videos. That’s the bitter truth, and you have to accept this reality to move forward in the right direction. It’s like this – In school – You might be great in maths but hated studying hindi, you saw no sense in studying hindi, but you had to, for that accumulative score of 75% so that you could crack first division. In life, you have to do things you don’t like so that you can do better in the things you like.
Collaborate to multiply your visibility – Spread the word out there in affluent circles.
To be a brand, it’s important that you are attracting the right crowd. Every city has its own set of public figures, people who are famous in affluent circles. Reach out to them and offer free or discounted service in lieu of their video testimonials & references from their affluent circle. Collaborate with related establishments like dentists, cosmetologists, skin experts, salon & spa and request them to have your promotional marketing creatives visible in their establishments. Don’t hesitate to pay them, Offer them free services or referral commissions. Your chances of becoming a known brand multiplies when the already established brands/names feel safe to associate with you.
Focus on Customer Experience: Customer experience is a small term that stands for a lot of things. From how much time you take to revert to an enquiry, to how professionally the client receives structured information about your services & prices – It’s a thin line between oversharing & under sharing information with a prospective lead. Sharing a PDF or a webpage that gives comprehensive information about your services goes a long way in creating the right image for your brand.
You can not under-share such that the client feels you dont care enough to respond and you can’t bombard your client with information such that you seem desperate to close the deal at any cost . Any kind of desperation in trying to close a sale can affect your brand image. It goes without saying that at the end of the – what matters the most is that the client loves your work, but the entire experience in your studio from the room fresheners you use to the music you play to the way your staff / helpers conduct themselves, how you dress up, everything says something about you and your brand. There are so many small things you can do that elevate your perception and help to create a market for you where clients happily take your services for a premium price.
Bonus Tip: Hire helpers & graduates to manage your physical & communications space. As a new artist, you need to focus on artistry. Don’t try to be a one man army, and take on too many roles. That will burn you out and your clients will see through your struggles, does not help in brand creation at all. Outsource as much as you can, from studio managers to automations through virtual & digital space managers. It might cost and take away from your profits initially, but that’s the bare investment you have to do if you want to be a brand which is far bigger than being just a good artist.