MMA's Blog

29 May 2018

7 Reasons Clients Aren't Booking You (And What To Do About It)

No matter the area of makeup in which you choose to work, there is always going to be the process of selection -- a determining of your worth and competency for the job. It is easy to point to rates as the culprit. It's not always your rate. Today, let's talk about the other reasons why clients aren't booking you and how to correct it.

If you are in any professionally-geared makeup group on Facebook, you've seen the rants. Clients won't pay my rate, brides are becoming more and more budget-conscious, clients expect the world for peanuts! It's frustrating, for sure!  We do all of this work to respond quickly and professionally and sometimes put together pricing and then ::crickets::  What happened?  Were they kidnapped?  Eaten by a T-Rex?  You'll never know and always wonder.

trexeatslady
Nom, nom, nom

 If you're if you're getting a rash of inquiries with no bookings, then there is likely something else going on. Even if the client literally says, "you're out of my budget," that doesn't necessarily mean that's the reason they aren't booking. How much easier is it to blurt out, "too much!!" vs trying to articulate how they didn't feel that your marketing presence, portfolio, branding, or communication portrayed a level of value they'd be willing to pay for your rate? Here are some things you need to look at if you're not getting booked or you're not getting the volume of bookings you want and it all comes down to your marketing:

If your marketing isn't right, you're not attracting the kind of client who will pay your rate.

Runaway-Bride
This is what affluent brides do when you tell them your rate and you don't have a website.  Truth.

 
1. Website:

If you're charging a premium rate, but you don't have a website or your website looks like it was created in 2005, then you're not attracting a premium client. Websites need updating to stay looking fresh and relevant. You need a professional-looking platform on which to showcase your work -- not a social media feed. This brings me to my next point!


2. Portfolio:

Your website needs to have examples of your work on it in an easily-navigated format. These images need to be updated regularly, to showcase your current skill level and keep your aesthetic fresh. Sometimes, an image can feel dated based on the brow, the lip, or any other trend that was happening. If you saw a book where the majority of the images had very thin brows and most had a frosty brow highlight .... how updated would you feel that book was?

 brows2brows
Behold the brow of the early 2000s!!  Know it.  Fear it.

Furthermore, do you know what kinds of looks your target client is looking for? Do you know who your target client is? These details will help you improve your booking rate significantly. If you're catering to elite brides, they're not likely looking for a blinding highlight with super dramatic wings and heavy contour. Likewise, if you're catering to a makeup-savvy millennial, you might need more dramatic, Instagram-inspired looks in your book. You need to know who you're talking to before you write the speech, so to speak.

puffy letters
Does this scream "luxury" to you?

3. General Branding:

If your brand is light and fun and quirky, do the colors and typefaces and copy on your website reflect that? Are you going for a more mature and sophisticated feel? Better not see any puffy bubble fonts on that website ... ;-)

Do some research on other brands with a similar feel to yours or make use of social media and do some market research. Find out what your target client is more attracted to. Do you know an amazing way to do this market research and only reach the people you want to poll? Facebook ads! They're highly targeted so if you only want to hear from engaged women between the ages of 25 and 35 who live in a specific city and make $75,000 or more a year ... you can do that!

4. Your Voice:

Do you have too much of a glimpse into your personal life on social media? Are there pictures of you tearing it up at the club (old lady lingo comin' atcha!), a catalog of selfies, or controversial stuff on there that could get someone's panties all in a bunch? Well .... even if they agree with your stance on something, they could perceive your mixing personal things with business as unprofessional and pass you up. Split up your profiles and lock down your personal page so you can post all the political rants you want and all of the selfies and tipsy party pics you want!

A great segue into my next point is how you respond to things on social media. Are you in a group interacting with clients or other artists? How are you sounding there?

5. Reviews:

Reviews help private clients like brides, prom, homecoming, and special event clients feel comfy booking you because they are a form of validation. You should be responding to every one of them -- especially any negative reviews. Your response represents your brand, so keep your cool and be sure to always remain professional.

Don't have reviews yet? Get them. You've been working on people while in school and as you build your business. Reach out to former clients and models.

sloth
I think this one is pretty self-explanatory....

6. Response Time:

How long are you taking to respond to client inquiries or general emails? If you are responding quickly, are you responding appropriately? For example, if a client inquiries and asks you about your availability, are you overwhelming them with details they didn't ask for or are you trying to be more conversational?

download
I hear sugar gliders have excellent customer service skills .....

7. Customer Service:

Are you easy to work with? How complex is your process? Do you make the client search through previous emails to find the information you need to book or do you go the extra mile to make it easy for them? Are you patiently answering questions? Have you considered your client experience and catered it to your target client? For example, if are forcing clients to call you, you are likely losing out on some business.

8. Follow Up:

Are you following up? How often and frequently? Too often and clients feel rushed. Not often enough or not at all and they could book with another artist who did. Clients are busy. They have lives of their own and for brides, they're juggling multiple vendors and trying to wade their way through planning. Do them a solid and follow up after a week or two of silence.

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