The beauty business has many varied and wonderful channels and niches to exploit. The trick is defining your goals and how you intend to get there. Do you have a comprehensive beauty skillset, or do you have a niche skill that will allow you to target a specific market? While you have hundreds of options to choose from, you must define your plan and goals before starting a beauty business.
What Kind of Beauty Business Will You Start?
Beauty covers so many aspects of daily life, whether it’s purely maintenance or if you’re reaching for the spectacular. It could be stylistic or self-care, male/female/hybrid/trans, young or old (or somewhere between). However, beauty businesses could be said to fall into one of the following categories:
- All of the above
The category YOUR business type falls into will primarily be determined by the skills you already have and those you are developing. You might have an objective to own a salon and be the foremost beauty stylist in your region. However, you can’t do that without a significant amount of study and earning qualifications.
Although, if you want to sell, promote, or inform people about beauty products and services, you just need a keen interest and passion for the beauty industry.
To Niche or Not to Niche
You may determine that an overall approach is best for your business type. However, you might find yourself more drawn to particular aspects of beauty than others. Do you have a passion for makeup and painted face effects, or are you more interested in skin or haircare?
Don’t be afraid to go the niche route. If there are enough people interested in your specialist niche, you will find a specific and dedicated audience for your business.
People might not want a generalist if they have something specific they want. Not all hairstylists can do amazing extensions, and not all beauty therapists have a magic touch with makeup. If you have a marketable skill, don’t be afraid to specialise.
So, what do you do next if you know what type of beauty business you’ll start and whether you will serve a niche or more general market?
While the nuances of each business type and niche are different, you need to consider some overarching themes and processes before starting a beauty business.
And I mean before you even write up your business plan.
However, once you’ve considered the following top tips, developing your business plan should be a breeze.
So let’s get started!
Before Starting a Beauty Business – 12 Tops Tips
Your passion for beauty is what will begin your journey to starting a beauty business. However, you will not succeed if you don’t do significant research into its viability. You will need to determine the supply and demand of your intended business.
Even in a saturated market, you can find underrepresented sections of your target community, online or in the real world. Your research will tell you how and to whom your business will relate.
A deep understanding of your future clients’ problems and the solutions they seek will enable you to create a business plan that welcomes them and makes them feel they have found the best possible option.
A lack of comprehension will lead to a misinformed business plan that won’t appeal to your target markets or will be so unfocused that it meets only a few needs.
You don’t want that.
Type of business
I mentioned above that beauty businesses can fall into several different categories. Your eventual business plan will depend on the skills and knowledge you bring to your business or the skills you can source.
If you are already an established beauty technician trying to start your own business, you are already qualified for most aspects of all beauty-focused companies.
Conversely, suppose you are a budding beauty guru but don’t yet have the qualifications or experience. In that case, you can start small using your personal experiences with brands you like and then diversify as you branch out. You may decide to beauty blog while learning about the business or selling beauty products that you know about.
By collecting additional skills along the way, while studying your art and beauty craft, you will have a solid basis to make a success of your business.
Who will your clients be? Depending on the type of business you create, your clients could be product brands, individuals, beauty salons, hair salons, theatres, or even the movie industry.
If you want to create a popular beauty blog, your services will be informational and educational. Your “clients” will be your readers, but your revenue will be from advertising and affiliation links.
Decide who you want your clients to be. How far do you want to take your business, and what will you need to do to get there?
Services, pricing and products
What service will you provide? This will align with your business type, but it will go deeper. If you decide you want to work with brands, will you help them sell their products, or will you go with a promotional approach? Perhaps it will be both.
So your beauty blog will serve readers with informational and educational content. Your “clients” will be your readers, but your revenue will be from advertising and affiliation links. The brands you work with, promote, and review will be secondary clients and your service to them will be promotion and links – essentially marketing.
You don’t need to pander to brands here. They will appreciate the honest feedback as much as the positive and glowing recommendations. Honesty will make your reading clients trust you, and if they trust you, they are more likely to believe your advice.
If your beauty business aspirations are more hands-on and client-focused, such as hair, makeup, skincare, or another avenue, you must determine what your target clients will want from you and your most extraordinary talents. You will gain a good name for yourself with excellent services, but you will gain fame in your niche by the service in which you outshine the competition.
All pricing will depend on your services’ quality, location, and traffic – online or footfall. Part of your research will require you to check out your competition digitally and in your local area.
Choosing a business name
Choosing a name is important. You want it to be short enough to stick in people’s minds and convey details about your business and what you do. You could say the same for choosing a logo that incorporates elements of your business and the name.
Even if you are just thinking up a blog name while experimenting with cosmetics, your name is important.
Imagine you build a significant following on your blog, people know your blog name, they trust your advice, and brands appreciate your reviews of their products. However, if you later gain a qualification in a beauty-related field and want to start a business, do you want to start from the beginning, or would you do better to start from that position of authority and trust?
Your name is a crucial aspect of your business.
On starting a beauty business, you might be a sole provider when you first start, but perhaps you want to grow your provision and staff quickly. How will you go about finding the right people?
It’s not easy choosing people with whom you know you can work. How can you possibly tell that person you meet for maybe an hour is worthy of working with your business “baby”. It is not an easy prospect, but it is simple.
- Show them why they should work for your business
- Be picky and recruit the best you can
- Use targeted hiring methods
This article is the most concise and valuable example of how to hire the right staff for a small business.
Making poor hiring choices is not just bad for business. It’s terrible for your mental health and your bottom line. Hiring, firing and rehiring cost money you don’t want to see draining from your fledgeling business.
Dealing with the competition
When you do your initial research, you should already have some sense of the competition in your target market. However, now you’re getting to the nitty-gritty of how you will secure your place in the market against existing competitors and future newcomers.
Competitive analysis will take up a proportion of your time throughout the lifecycle of your business. You will learn to differentiate yourself from your competition, highlight your expertise, and showcase your talents. And you will know when it’s a good time to discount and when it’s time to increase your prices.
Getting started with this information early will help you further down the road.
Marketing and PR
This will determine how many people you can reach and how you will ensure the right people find you when they’re looking. All advertising is marketing, but all marketing is not advertising.
Make people aware of you. In the beauty business, visuals are everything. Your best platforms for distributing your presence are those with a visual presence. Snapchat (yes, it’s still a thing), TikTok, Youtube, Instagram. Everywhere you can demonstrate a product, create a tutorial, showcase a new service, or connect with a happy client is an excellent medium for spreading your name.
“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.” so make sure you get as many eyes as possible on your beauty business.
If you are simply talking about or promoting beauty products or regimes, you won’t need much insurance if you add disclaimers to your claims and recommendations. However, if you intend to provide beauty services, you will need some public liability insurance to cover you against any mistakes, allergic reactions or accidents. Your fledgeling beauty business will not survive a lawsuit for poor personal service.
If you have premises or an office where people will visit you, whether you provide beauty services or not, you will need insurance against accidents on your property. It doesn’t matter if they trip over their own shoelaces. If a severe injury occurs, you could still be held liable – better safe than sorry.
If you travel to people’s homes, you won’t need public liability insurance, only treatment and professional liability insurance – and possibly product liability, too, if you intend to sell your products.
Finance and budgeting
Starting a beauty business is not cheap, particularly if you intend to carry out beauty therapies on clients. Most of us go to a salon for all of our beauty needs. Not because we want to travel somewhere, but because usually salons are customised to be little oases of calm and tranquillity, where we can relax into pampering and self-care. Our homes have chores, reminders of stressors in our lives, and perhaps even small children running around.
However, that doesn’t mean you can’t start a beauty business without a salon. And it could help you build a particular niche of clients who can’t get to a salon regularly. It’s a niche not nearly as well served as it should be.
While being mobile or remote in the beauty business removes a high cost for premises, there are still expenses.
If you sell products, you may have to buy whole ranges before you can sell (dropshipping is another option for online sales). Promoting, reviewing and otherwise using products for informational purposes means fewer purchases. However, there are still expenses – not least the technical set-up of a website, video channels and professional social pages.
Quite obviously, the beauty therapist still has the highest set-up costs. Equipment, consumables, premises or transport, products, and all the same technical costs as the blogger as well as other business management tools
What do you have, and what do you need? Are the projected set-up costs within your current savings budget, or do you need to secure investment? Could you qualify for a business loan?
Again, you will need to do the research.
Where will you find business support? Support can come in many forms. It might be family or friends.
Where will you find business support? Support can come in many forms. It might be family or friend support. It might be finding someone to help you with marketing or accounting. Although, it could also be finding financial aid and funding for the business.
Support with starting a beauty business is not just about securing finance or having friends and family to help support your dreams. You might need technical support to facilitate a remote or nomadic/mobile business. Maybe you need accounting assistance to ensure you can balance your books.
You might not even need human support. Perhaps you need business supporting tools that help you keep your accounts, schedule your services or video formating for your podcast.
So now you are ready to start putting together your business plan with everything you have discovered and how you plan to achieve your goals.
- Research, Research and Research some more (there is research at every step)
- Determine the business type and its development
- Choose your clients
- Decide your services and products, and create a pricing plan
- Choose a spectacular name
- Choosing Staff
- Dealing with competition
- Marketing and PR
- Finance & Budgeting
- Getting the support you need
And now, for the last on the list
- Writing a business plan…
Developing The Business Plan Before Starting a Beauty Business
Now that you have been through the start-up checklist, you know what you need for your beauty business and how to make it a success. Writing your business plan should include aspects from all the considerations above.
Everything from your research and passions to finding the proper support for your business will form an integral part of your business plan. However, with all of the considerations above, you have everything you need to create a comprehensive, dynamic and functional business plan that will guide you through.
The business plan is crucial, but how you research your business beforehand will mean you have already thought of (almost) everything.
Good luck in starting a beauty business