Are your potential clients ghosting you? Are you sick of sending out quotes to brides and other clients, never to hear back from them again? It can be so frustrating. You feel excited that you’re going to book a big wedding, but then it doesn’t eventuate.
There can be several reasons that a client might not get back to you, and today you’ll learn a few tips to ensure you’re getting a good return on your (time) investment. Because, let’s face it, it takes time to answer enquiries and follow up.
The first thing to look at is your typical customer journey. How are your clients finding out about you in the first place, and what touch-points do they have with you and your business before they enquire or make a booking?
In this modern world of 24/7 connection, internet and social media, consumers are bombarded by marketing messages all day long. What used to work decades ago isn’t working now, as consumers are tuning out to all the “noise” of advertising. Think about it, do you watch the ads that pop up when you’re scrolling Insta-stories, or do you swipe left to skip them?
In the past, consumers would make a buying decision after 2-3 touch points, whereas today, it’s taking many consumers anywhere from 5 to 20 touch points before they make a buying decision. And if all those touch points are emails back and forth with you, that’s a lot of time you’re devoting to a booking you might not even get!
For most makeup artists and hairstylists, the first touch-point will be either when your client hears about you from another person (a recommendation from a friend who has been a client of yours, or another industry colleague – a photographer or another makeup artist) or, they will come across your work on Social Media through a hashtag search, or your website via a keyword search (probably using Google).
ts many times easier to make a sale through a personal recommendation than it is with a “cold lead” (which means someone who has know prior knowledge of you and your business and has just found you through a search). The “Social Validation” provided by another person’s recommendation is priceless, and I could devote an entire blog post to the importance of developing a referral network!
So today let’s just focus on those cold leads. The key here is to look at your Social Media profiles, your website and portfolio and ask yourself, Am I attracting the clients I want to be working with here? I’ve written about attracting your Ideal Client, and its something we focus on in the Makeup Mastermind Membership group too.
When you are clear in your message, you’ll be eliminating enquiries from people who aren’t right for you in the first place. They will notice your profile, and keep moving. And, that’s a good thing!
So, how can you help your customers along their journey to ensure that the right ones stay on the path and eventually book with you, and those who are not your ideal client drop off before they even enquire?
If you add value to your people before they even become your clients, they are a lot more likely to not ghost you. Its all about connection! I’ve talked before about the Know, Like and Trust factor, and this is an important part of that customer journey. When you develop that KLT with your potential clients, and develop a connection with them, they are less likely to ghost you.
What ways are you adding value to your clients before they enquire? It could be a simple PDF download they can get from your website (or even your Instagram!) with skincare tips leading up to their wedding day. It could be a link to a wedding preparation playlist you’ve created on Spotify. Use your imagination and come up with something you can offer to help your customers along that journey.
One of the main things I hear about potential clients ghosting, is that the client will ask about price in the initial inquiry, and then never be heard from again. I can pretty much guarantee that if I get an inquiry just asking about my pricing, I won’t hear from that client again. Someone who is shopping on price only will always go with the cheapest option. But remember, just like not everyone buys their clothes at Best & Less, not all makeup clients are looking to book the cheapest makeup artist.
I am a big believer in putting your prices on your website. Of course, not everyone will actually READ your pricelist, but it does weed out some of the price shoppers. And if you don’t have a website, you can create a simple one page Enquiry Form that will email you directly from your Instagram/Facebook profile and have your prices listed on there.
Making the enquiry process simple for your clients is another great way to add value. People are time poor, so the more information you can provide to them early in the enquiry phase, the easier you’re making it for them too.
Lastly (but certainly not least!) is follow – up. I love the quote “The fortune is in the follow-up”. Often artists don’t follow up because they don’t want to “bother” the potential client. Or perhaps, they are afraid of getting a definite NO. Fear of rejection can be quite paralysing, I know I have felt it holding me back at times in my career too. But I’ve learned to remind myself that I don’t already have that person as a client, so by following up, I’m not going to be any worse off than I am now. I have nothing to lose and everything to gain!
When I taught this to my Business Boost students recently, one of the artists came back to me and told me that she hadn’t bothered to follow-up before because she felt it would be annoying her potential clients. She learned to see it as client care, and found she had a great response. She followed up all her enquiries from the past month, booked a couple and one bride even thanked her for taking the time to follow up.
Remember, you are never going to book every client who enquires with you. And that’s totally normal, and it’s OK. You’re not the right artist for everyone! So remember that every potential client is on a journey, and if you can help them along that journey, and connect with them in a meaningful way, they are less likely to ghost you, and even if they don’t book, they will hopefully get back and respectfully let you know they’ve booked elsewhere.
I hope you found this blog post valuable! Please feel free to share it with someone you think could benefit. If you’d like more help with your business, consider joining the Makeup Mastermind Membership group!