Show me the Money
Time and again we are confronted by clients with bad SMP’s who have discovered, too late, that the T’s & C’s they signed up to did not allow for further work to be carried out Free of Charge if required. Given that in cases where a client’s extremely active immune system means it can take 7 or 8 sessions to complete the work this can prove completely unviable leaving the client with a disastrous result.
It is vital to establish at the outset exactly what it is you are signing up to and the extent of your post-treatment cover. His Hair aim to set the industry standard by offering a one year period for free touch ups if required.
Get Your Priorities Right
There are many considerations when choosing a provider. Not least their location and their pricing – Of all the understandable reasons we hear for clients ending up in the bad hands of a poor technician, location is probably the one we can all relate to the easiest. If you are unable to make a huge distinction between a couple of businesses it makes sense to go to the one you can drive to, as opposed the expense and hassle of flights and hotels, never mind sacrificing those precious holiday days.
Be wary of making the mistake mentioned in Part 1, of selling to yourself. Ask yourself whether you are in fact letting the fact that you can drive to the local provider cloud your judgement. It may mean a few extra hundred bucks, it might mean a few days off your annual leave quota, but you know it would be worth every penny to get it right first time.
Not being able to afford the provider you wanted the first time round is always a heart-sinking story. The fact is that price remains the oldest tool in the box for entering a new market and with SMP still relatively young (invented by His Hair in 2002) there are plenty of locations where it is possible to open up without local competition. The clients we meet who have been through the experience invariably spent time on the usual sites doing some elementary due diligence, before deciding to go with the clinic down the road because they love the idea of a perfect SMP but want to get it at a cheap rate. But it turns out the clinic down the road is a fly by night who uses hotel rooms for treatments, or it is a clinic but focusses on eyebrows in the main, or it’s a tattooist willing to have a go. As my Nan always said, “Buy cheap, buy twice”.
If it Looks Like a Duck and Quacks Like a Duck…
It could still very easily be a wild goose. In Part 1 we spoke about the power of the internet as tool to help you perform your due diligence. By the same token it is a powerful tool in the hands of the provider, with deep enough pockets a magnificent site can be constructed, professional sounding people will answer the phone and smoothly tell you exactly what you want to hear. Images on the site can be doctored or even stolen (another issue we see becoming more regular and challenging to police).
A perfect SMP is a wonder to behold but it takes a great deal of experience and training to be able to deliver one confidently every time. To make sure you end up in the hands of the right provider you must undertake due diligence and investigate your options thoroughly, go beyond the advertising.
Start by establishing the facts, exactly what do you get for your money and what are the guarantees? Use the internet to check their history and any other claims made on their website. Can you talk and meet with ex-customers? Definitely take the time to make an exploratory visit to the clinic. Join their forum… of all the ways of checking out a business the place where their past and future clients meet is an outstanding opportunity to ask your questions – even though they are moderated environments.
On a final, personal, note, I always find it is best to imagine you are performing this due diligence for a much loved member of your family… as a rule we are far more critical in that role than when buying for ourselves.