The days leading up to the grand opening of your new kid’s salon franchise are filled with much excitement. Sometimes it might feel a little hectic as you’re making sure all the final details are taken care of, but overall there’s a sense of satisfaction in knowing that the long wait is almost over. To ensure your opening goes as smoothly as possible, it helps to know what to expect as well as some dos and don’ts to help you and your team get started on the right foot.
Engage with the Business Community
As soon as you can, start engaging with the local business community through your local Chamber of Commerce and other similar associations. Michael Spinosa of Unleashed Technologies says these organizations have “tremendous power to help increase your exposure and even coordinate special events on your opening day that help get the buzz around town,” also noting that involvement in business associations is quite helpful for businesses catering to consumers.
Take Advantage of Social Media
To further your efforts in generating a buzz about your business and getting the word out, use social media as it will help expand your reach and build a loyal customer base later on. Be sure to use the social media platforms your target audience is most likely using and start posting even before your business opens. Share news about grand opening events, what customers can expect to experience in their interactions with your business, introduce your staff, and more.
Hire and Train Your Staff
Your staff will be one of your best advertisements for your business, so make it a priority to conduct a thorough hiring and training process. Your customers may interact with them more than you, so you want to make sure your staff knows your expectations, the processes and procedures to follow, how to handle difficult situations, and the basics like great customer service. This is also a good time to invest in your staff by going through some team-building exercises to remind them that you’re all on the same team so you present a united front when your doors open.
Plan a Soft Opening
Be sure to plan a soft opening before the grand opening. By providing a sneak peek at what’s to come, you can help generate excitement for your grand opening as well as give your team a chance to get a feel for what the environment will be like when you’re officially open for business. After the soft opening, take some time to review what went well and what needs to be changed or improved prior to your grand opening to better your operations.
Focus on the Customer Experience
Remember that providing your customers with an exceptional experience the first time they walk through your business’s doors is crucial if you want them to keep coming back. Create a welcoming atmosphere and small touchpoints that show your appreciation. From coupons for a percentage off on their next visit to referrals and other client loyalty programs, there are a ton of ways you can go one step further than the competition to show your customers how much you value and appreciate their business.
Be Prepared for the Unexpected
As you get ready for your grand opening, expect the unexpected. You may have more people show up than you were expecting, or something may go awry and that’s okay. No matter what happens, have a backup plan in place and keep your patrons happy. If something goes wrong, don’t let it show. Keep things moving and plan a regroup with your team at the end of the day to celebrate the successes and discuss any issues that came up. Make a plan for addressing and resolving any issues, and look forward to starting the next day with a clean slate.
At Pigtails & Crewcuts, our salon owners receive support each step of the way from our franchise support team during the pre-opening process and beyond. From marketing plans to operational support, staff training and more, each owner will be assigned a dedicated Franchise Support Specialist to help ensure the salon has a smooth pre-opening process and a successful grand opening, plus ongoing support afterwards. Our owners never have to go it alone!