Amber Manning, UK CEO at Just Cuts, gives her view on how a business can adapt to not only survive but thrive in evolving markets. For nearly 30 years, Just Cuts has been growing through franchising, leaving Australia and New Zealand almost saturated, and the UK as their next target for expansion. Understanding what, if any, adaptions were needed in this new market was the first thing on her mind.
We set up a pilot company-owned salon to supply us with details on what British consumers want, what is transferable from our salons in Australia and what would need changing to meet market demand. You might think you’re an expert in your field, and know everything there is to know but, trust me, there’s always so much more to learn. Markets constantly evolve, which means that businesses need to be at the top of their game to move with it, and quickly!
It pays, quite literally, to know what’s happening in your industry and to keep up with the latest trends. Customers will expect to see you innovating and adapting without making big mistakes in the process. You’ll need to demonstrate that you really know your stuff. The beauty industry is very erratic, no two days are the same; one minute something’s on trend, the next it’s something entirely different - that’s just the way it goes. The whole Just Cuts team put their beautifully-styled heads together and cracked a formula to stay ahead of the game when it comes to hair care and styling.
Over the last few years, we’ve seen a rise in popularity of premium barber shops as men look for a better quality of haircut. We’ve kept our 50:50 split of male and female clients by ensuring our Stylists are trained in the latest men’s Style Cuts, as well as creating a unisex product range. Our pricing strategy hits the middle ground, providing a great experience but without the premium price tag, or the bargain basement prices which put the more style-conscious men off.
Most changes have to be consumer-led. Whether our clients are demanding a specific product or looking for the latest innovations, they continue to influence our service. In the beauty industry in particular, the focus has shifted towards a more natural and ethical approach to looking after ourselves. We listened to our clients and realised they longed for products to use at home to maintain their salon finish. Our answer was designing, producing and manufacturing our own paraben-free/cruelty-free product range to enhance the salon experience for our customers. People are savvy and crave convenience – we perfected our service and tailored it to their needs.
The advancement in technology has given customers the power to get what they want almost instantaneously. And that’s had a direct impact on the way we do business. Every day, a new app appears with the hopes of revolutionising our lives, but rarely do we see one that actually makes it easier. Here at Just Cuts, we came up with our own concept that kept us up to date and made our customers’ experience more special. We created a bespoke app that stuck with our “no appointment necessary” ethos but allowed people to check in and join the queue remotely. We spotted the opportunity to stick to our values but evolve with the development in technology.
Our relationship with technology gave us the opportunity to manage things remotely from the Australia. With a team based in the UK, a lot of the operations can be handled from the southern hemisphere with our CRM system that gives us access to everything happening in our salons. And there’s no reason why this couldn’t work the other way.
Adapting our business model to work in the UK was necessary for replicating the success, but it didn’t come without discovering the ins and outs of the market. By knowing your industry and taking the time and energy to research into the state of affairs, it can help take your business to new heights. We now have our first franchisee-owned salons in Wandsworth and Walton on Thames, beginning the multi-salon journey for our franchisee Magda and the start of a great adventure for Just Cuts in the UK.
Before I found Just Cuts, I was a stay-at-home mum with two girls. When they had got to school age, I realised I had to do something for myself. It was always my dream to have my own salon so I started looking for something to fulfil that. I discovered Just Cuts, met with the Franchise Recruitment Manager and I instantly fell in love with the brand. The whole philosophy of the business was perfect.Magda Deaconescu – Just Cuts Wandsworth and Walton-on-Thames
I always thought it was a pipe dream to have my own salon but all the Just Cuts salons around the world are owned by franchisees who receive ongoing support to ensure business success. One of the reasons Just Cuts has done so well is our no-appointment system - clients can log in to our app and continue with their busy lives until it’s time for their spot in the chair.Holly Feltham – Just Cuts Lakeside
I was instantly drawn to the Just Cuts franchise model. What you get in terms of support is second-to-none and the brand is so innovative. The concept of walk-in appointments, fixed pricing and a professional quality, affordable haircare range really stands out in what can be a crowded marketplace. I’m excited for the future of my business and see this as such an amazing opportunity.Barbara Burnett – Just Cuts Stevenage
Increased flexibility and work-life balance – the average Just Cuts Franchise Owner spends less than 30 hours working on their business.
You don’t need hairdressing experience to own a Just Cuts salon – all you need is a passion for customer service and the dedication to succeed
The average franchise owner goes on to own multiple salons. In fact, just over half are multi-site owners!