We had such a great time visiting Sherri-Lee at her award winning salon, Puravida Beauty, in Wellington, New Zealand. She told us about her business and what makes it special, what she loves about working in the beauty industry, and why she couldn’t live without her favourite Kitomba features.
Watch Sherri-Lee tell her story in this short video, or read on for the full interview.
Tell us about your business
We’ve been in business for a number of years and I have owned Puravida Beauty for the past 4 years. I come from a family of accountants and I was working with children when I decided I would either go on to study special needs teaching or throw it all away and become a beauty therapist. So I worked in a salon for 5 years, realised this was my absolute passion and that being a beauty therapist was what was going to make me happy. I’d heard Rachel Robertson, who owned Skin Therapy at the time and is now the founder of Prologic, speak about skin care and I realised that was my passion. While Puravida is a beauty therapy clinic, my main passion is skin therapy.
What’s the best part about working in this industry?
For me, it’s always been client experience. The one thing I hope that every client experiences is that little bit of a confidence boost, so while my passion is skin, it could be an eyebrow shape, or eyelash tint, or nails, but I always hope that each client leaves here feeling that little bit more confident and that little bit more loved and appreciated. I want them to feel that for the time they were here, they were the most important thing. It’s that whole experience – the falling in love with yourself again – that really makes it worthwhile for me. So if someone can say “I felt so amazing when I left there”, that’s everything to me.
Who is your target market?
We don’t have a target market, I think anybody who is willing to invest in themselves is somebody who should come and see us. Whether it’s skin needs, an eyebrow shape or a massage for relaxation, whatever you need – we want you to feel comfortable to do that here. So we don’t have a set target market, we just have different options for different target markets.
What makes Puravida special?
I think it’s that we’re really client focused. When I first became a beauty therapist I went for some interviews and it all felt really sales focused. But to me, a client is more than a dollar value. I really wanted a place where every client really felt like more than just a sales target. We don’t have sales targets in the salon. We believe it’s about education, and education will then lead into trust, which will then lead into sales, naturally and authentically. So I think it really is about that whole client experience – when you’re here it’s all about you, it’s about being in safe, trusted, knowledgeable hands. It’s not a dollar value, because you’re never a dollar value to us.
Do you have any advice for other business owners?
My biggest piece of advice to other business owners is that there’s no such thing as failure – it’s a lesson, you need to pick yourself up and say “well that didn’t work, so what can we do better next time?” The only failure is not trying.
What Kitomba features makes running your business easier?
The reality is, if it wasn’t for Kitomba’s Online Booking, I would have gone under my first year in business. That first year it was me, myself and I, and nobody else, no support systems. So when I couldn’t answer the phone and the phone told them to go to the website to make an online booking, that’s what people did. It gave me the ability to have a receptionist without having to pay for a receptionist. So even now that there are two of us, we can sometimes answer the phone, but we still can’t get to every call and every email as quickly as we’d like to, so honestly I couldn’t live without online booking. I think around 90% of our sales come from online booking if they haven’t been rebooked. Our rebooking rate is consistently around 70% but almost every other booking comes through online booking.
I also wouldn’t be able to live without Kitomba’s reports like the Business Summary. While we don’t have a sales focus in the salon, we still need to ensure that we’re making enough money to cover the bills. So we use the Business Summary to make sure we’re always hitting our KPIs. It also makes it easy to look at new client rebookings, and what was different this month to last month. Without a doubt the business summary gets printed out every month, and we go over it with a fine tooth comb comparing it to the month before.
Having Kitomba 1 access means that when I’m not in the salon, even if I’m home on sick leave, I can do things behind the scenes while the salon is still running. I like to look at the reports and see client retention rates, looking into where our referrals come from and the rebooking rates. I look into all the figures I can and read all the blogs on Kitomba’s website so that I can better understand my business and how I can make it even better.
Really, without Kitomba I wouldn’t even have a business because I wouldn’t be able to keep track of everything!
Want to discover if Kitomba can help you success in business, like it has for Puravida Beauty? Get in touch with us to book your free demo!