The pandemic has changed the way some businesses carry out their activities. In the beauty industry, more hairstylists have seen freelancing as a viable solution to movement restrictions and store closures.
As beauty salons experienced a considerable drop in revenues, hairdressers saw it fitting to become self-employed mobile hairstylists. But, being one isn’t as easy as you’d imagine. If you’re thinking about being a freelance stylist, here are the things to consider before taking the plunge:
1. Create A Business Plan
Even if you’re not engaged in a formal business, you’d still need to craft a business plan to set your business or career goals and objectives. Besides short- and long-term goals, you’d have to be clear with your budget and income targets, the number of customers to aim for, and the types of services you’ll offer.
It’s not enough that you only know the most chic haircuts and the latest makeup trends. Don’t forget to include plans for expansion and skills upgrades. Put simply, allow your business plan to guide the path you wish your venture to take.
2. Secure A Professional License
Professional service providers need to acquire specific licenses to practice their craft. Requirements vary from state to state, but at the minimum, one must have taken and finished an accredited course for cosmetology, hair styling, and other related programs in a state-accredited community college. Additionally, you must’ve passed a licensure exam or certification, and gained the required work hours of practice.
3. Purchase An Insurance Coverage
General liability insurance isn’t reserved for professionals offering critical and life-altering services, such as doctors, lawyers, engineers, and dentists. As general liability safeguards a policyholder from physical injuries, property damage, product liabilities, and advertising injuries, it can protect a freelance stylist, too.
Hairdressing insurance is a specific insurance liability product aimed at protecting hairdressers from occupation-related accidents. These unavoidable incidents may cover errors, product defects, theft, and other similar damage-inflicting occurrences. They may not be as different as the issues faced by more established businesses, but as a freelance stylist, you’ll find yourself struggling to pay for the damages. This type of insurance will cover the costs and damages of accidents caused while performing your services, or by your tools and pieces of equipment.
4. Get Registered
Self-employed individuals must register with all appropriate government bodies before offering their services to the public. Approach concerned agencies, including local business offices and tax departments, to determine the requirements in your state. Don’t skip this step if you want to optimize your business activities. With proper accreditation, you’ll avoid having to face problems or pay hefty penalty fees down the road.
5. Buy Or Rent The Necessary Equipment
Because some hairstyling tools can be costly, choose which pieces you need to prioritize. You can purchase dryers, brushes, combs, scissors, and hair treatments from your own pockets. The more expensive salon chairs, if not a priority, can be leased or skipped for later.
In addition, you should stock on regular supplies, such as hair dyes, shampoo, conditioners, and other haircare products. As such, look for reliable suppliers who offer affordable prices for these recurring needs.
6. Craft A Marketing Strategy
As you build your name and brand in the community, embark on both in-person and digital marketing. Consider putting up posters and distributing flyers in places where the community converges. More importantly, work on building your professional website, as well as your social media presence.
To create an effective marketing pitch:
- Get familiar with the local industry.
- Launch a survey with your target audience as participants.
- Ask about the most in-demand hairstyling services and find out clients’ pain points with the current setting.
- Gather information about their backgrounds and preferences, among other key indicators.
These are especially helpful when designing your website and planning your social media strategy.
7. Set Your Pricing Right
In getting familiar with the workings of the beauty industry in your community, don’t forget to set prices smartly. You’re in the business to make a profit, but pricing your services steeply may prevent you from attracting more clients. Setting low service rates could also mean losing crucial opportunities to generate revenues.
To get an idea of how much to charge your clients for your services, consider the materials you use and the average rates imposed by other salons and stylists. Don’t forget to factor in fuel expenses if you offer home services. In setting the appropriate price, don’t go for the lowest price. Instead, strive to provide the best services at the most reasonable prices.
The Bottom Line
Being a mobile hairdresser can help you save a lot of money on recurring expenses, such as rent and utilities. As such, the opportunities for income generation are more significant, especially if you can establish a huge following.
Before venturing as a mobile hairdresser consider the points discussed above for a more successful and seamless start.