If you are a hairdresser who is tired of working in a salon, and want to work for yourself, then mobile hairdressing can be a good way to start up your own business without the need of your own premises.
A mobile hairdresser effectively goes to their clients’ locations and cuts, dyes or styles their hair there. This can be for normal routine cutting and styling, or it can be for specific occasions such as styling hair for weddings, proms, and other events where the client wouldn’t want to make a trip to a salon.
Do you have the equipment you need?
The first thing you will need to set up on your own as a mobile hairdresser is of course, the right tools. You’ll need salon quality hairdressing equipment, including a range of scissors and combs, professional quality hairdryers, straighteners and curling irons, and bleach resistant salon towels.
You won’t be able to do your best work using your clients’ own things, so invest in the tools you need and really get to know them so you can get fantastic results without feeling like you are experimenting! If you want to offer things like dying, bleaching and permanent waves, you’ll also need to find a good supplier for these kinds of chemicals.
You could keep a stock of the most commonly used ones, but also need to be able to find a brand you are comfortable mixing and using to buy fast when a client has requested an unusual tone or effect.
Of course, as well as having all of the tools, you will need a professional looking case to bring them to your clients’ locations in, and your own car. It may be possible to operate as a mobile hairdresser without a car, but it’s going to be a lot more difficult.
When you first start out, you’ll need to get some initial clients to get the ball rolling. Put the word out to your friends and family, as quite often a hairdresser’s first few clients will come from people they already know, and word of mouth recommendations.
Get business cards printed, and give a few to any friends you have who may be willing to pass them on to other people they know. During this period, set up a calendar using an app or some software, so you can easily take bookings when people call or email you. You should already have worked out your price list, so you can respond to any inquiries quickly and professionally.
For most people, their circle of friends and the people they can draw in through personal recommendations will not be enough clients to keep their business in the black, so you need to consider other ways of marketing in your local area.
One of the first steps toward this is to create a website for your business, which should explain the services you offer, show pictures of work you have done, and also explain your prices and how far you are willing to travel. To draw in more local business, however, you need to help people find your site, which means you will want to do well on Google search results for hairdressers in your town.
You can hire an SEO company to help you do this, or attempt to learn SEO yourself. Having a blog on your website with interesting content you write (or pay someone to write) about haircare and the latest trends in hair could be a way to increase your standing with Google, so if you aren’t ready to invest time or money in SEO then this is one way you can make a start fairly easily and build on it when you are ready to push a bit harder with marketing.
Social media marketing will also be a strong ally, so be sure to have a Twitter account and a Facebook page where you can post about hair and any special offers you are doing, and post photos of your clients before and after their work (with their permission of course!). Get your clients to follow you and share these posts to help spread the word through their social networks about your service.
You may also want to consider paying for targeted advertising on Facebook or Google, which will be shown to people in your local area only. You can also refine your targeting further, for instance only showing your ads to people who appear to be interested in bridal topics, if you want to focus on wedding hair.
Starting up as a mobile hairdresser can be a great way to start your own business relatively inexpensively if you already have the skills!