Establishing a strong relationship with your client is essential to a great appointment. When you are able to connect with your client, they are more likely to truly open up about their wants and needs, which will allow you a greater chance of meeting those expectations. There are many thing you can do to foster this client connection, but here are my top 5.
1. Be attentive
Listen more than you talk. Talking to your client during the consultation is important, but it is even more important that you develop the ability to actively listen. When a makeup artist talks too much, they don’t leave much room for the client to express all their wants, needs, and concerns. Of course, there should be a cordial and warm greeting, but beyond that a makeup artist should guide their client with open-ended questions that encourage them to freely share all of their wants and needs.
During the application, the conversation should be lead entirely by the client. Yes, you should ask questions as needed, to ensure their goals are met, but too much unwanted conversation can take away from how relaxing and enjoyable the process can be. You have two ears and one mouth for a reason. Use your ears twice as often as your mouth!
2. Keep it professional
Professional composure. Few things are more unsettling than talking to someone who seems preoccupied, distracted, or elusive. To ensure client trust and satisfaction, there are several things you should always do. First, maintain gentle eye contact. When you don’t look at someone when you are speaking, or being spoken to, it can create a very uncomfortable dynamic.
It is also important that you don’t fidget. Fidgeting can convey anxiety and that can make it very difficult for your client to relax. Lastly, keep a calm tone. When you are calm and professional, that comes through to your client and it is contagious.
3. Deliver on your work
Create realistic expectations. Never make a promise to your client that you cannot keep. During a consultation, it is wise to assure your client that you will enhance their key features while minimizing any that they have expressed concerns over.
It is unwise to promise that you will make anything disappear, because that would create unrealistic expectations. When you promise perfection, they will expect it. And sometimes what clients really want cannot be accomplished with makeup alone.
4. Create a sense of order
Preparation. Before your client sits down, have the room fully set up. Having your makeup and tools neatly aligned on your table creates a great first impression. If you scrabble to do this when they arrive, it is not ideal for creating a calm and welcoming environment. The more you can have done before they arrive, the more professional you will appear.
There are times when this can be difficult or impossible, especially if you are going to a client’s home, dressing room, or hotel room. However, on location visits can easily be solved. When the client books you, simply alert her that you need twenty minutes to set up prior to application.
5. Set high hygiene standards
Hygiene. Being clean and hygienic is the fastest way to build client trust and comfort. If your tools are clean and you make ample use of hand sanitizer, your client will notice.
And whether or not they say it out loud, they’ll be thanking you on the inside. I would love to know what other behaviors you would exhibit that would create a strong artist/client relationship. Please share your thoughts in the comments.