Huntington Beach, known for its beautiful beaches in Southern California, is the newest home to Salons by JC. To use one word to describe this location would be, pivot. Owner Moin Hussaini, concierge Donna, and their suite owners have all had to pivot as they have had to adjust to obstacles since the location’s opening in June.
Overcoming the Unknown in Huntington Beach
“I made a drastic decision in March. At that time I faced the prospect of an indefinite shutdown. My construction was stopped and my lease was starting in July. The landlord was completely unresponsive to my inquiries about abatement,” stated Moin Hussaini. “I realized that if I wanted to lease quickly I’d need to provide added assurance to nervous beauty professionals about rent during shutdowns.” Hussaini changed his messaging on his advertising to focus on the benefits of being in a salon suite during this pandemic. He also emphasized being the only salon suites to have a full-time concierge to ensure protocols were followed and proper sanitation of the location.
Moving away from fewer sales language on his ads helped him in working on his presence in the area. “Messages were more empathetic to the shutdown impact. No beauty professionals were seriously looking at that time given the uncertainty.” Hussaini promoted his involvement in the business and also actively participated in all tours so that the potential suite owners would get acquainted with him. “I heavily promoted my inclusion of a rent abatement clause in case of shutdowns. This was what the industry was already doing, but adding the language to the contracts provided much-needed reassurance to scared prospects,” stated Hussaini.
Working in Favor of Salon Suites
The Huntington Beach location along with our other California locations have been some of the hardest hit during this pandemic. The California rules and regulations have been extremely strict. Hussaini found that even with strict rules in California, they worked in favor of salon suites. “Clients in salons had to keep 6 feet apart and effectively impose capacity constraints. Because salon suites are private and 1-on-1, we were automatically socially distanced and the capacity constraints did not apply. Additionally, the clientele was no longer allowed to wait in the lobby. They were summoned by their service provider by cell phone or text. And everyone was required to wear a mask.”
Masking was a main focus for Salons by JC Huntington Beach in order to keep everyone safe and has proved to be a difficult task at times. “Huntington Beach is a prominent center of resistance to masking mandates. We had to strike a balance between making everyone feel safe, but not being too rigid. The tone I struck in all my communications was one of “convincing” rather than “telling”. I used evidence and reason and empathy in my emails.” Hussaini’s background as a medical device executive at a ventilator company came in clutch as he drew upon personal experiences with victims of this disease.
Creating that Safe Space
Great communication along with an outstanding concierge, Donna Culpepper, enabled the suite owners to feel comfortable in their new environment. “Donna, our incredible concierge, was key to reinforcing the message on masking. She behaves like an owner. She loves to work and is particularly conscientious about creating a safe environment,” stated Hussaini. Donna’s warm and bubbly personality made it easy for the suite owners and prospects to gravitate towards her. “When prospects would visit competitors -where a tenant would show them around- and then come to us, the difference was clear. We had a community, the other spaces were just that -spaces.”
Picking the Right Business Model
Within the past few months, Hussaini and his location have endured a whirlwind of experiences and have successfully kept moving forward. “I am much more confident now than I was before I started. I successfully launched a business in the hard of possible climates.” Hussaini credits his success to choosing the right business model. “Salons by JC salons suites are uniquely positioned to win. Not only are suites the future of salons, our quality, and the concierge are huge differentiators. If I had to give myself advice when I started, I’d just say don’t be nervous. It is going to work out better than you ever thought it would.”
Salons by JC is the premier salon suite franchise in the U.S with over 120 locations in 26 states and Canada. For more information about the Salons by JC franchise, contact us here.
Blog is written by:
Marlene Romo Flores – Salons by JC Franchise Marketing Manager