How To Set Expectations for First-Time Customers


a woman waiting for an appointment in a beauty salon

Table of Contents

  1. Be Realistic
  2. Go Above and Beyond
  3. Show Your Receipts
  4. Provide Strong Communication
  5. Adjust Your Approach As You Go

Learning how to set customer expectations requires some experience, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get started right now. While beauty customer service might seem simple in theory—just promise them a great treatment and then deliver—there’s more to it than that. 

As your own boss, you set the rules. That’s exciting and comes with a lot of freedom, but it also comes with a whole lot of responsibility! Your success depends on customer satisfaction, especially from first-timers who you want to turn into repeat customers, so don’t overlook it!

Follow these five steps to set (and meet) expectations so you can grow your loyal customer base.

1. Be Realistic

a beautician doing a woman’s hair

When you set customer expectations, you mustn’t promise the world unless you can deliver. At the same time, don’t sell yourself short. Make sure they know exactly what to expect. That way there’s no confusion or disappointment. You can talk yourself up while still telling the truth. Always be honest!

2. Go Above and Beyond

a stylist applying makeup to a woman with eyelash extensions

When it comes to beauty customer service, bigger is always better. Why offer one lash pillow when you can offer two? Why play your own music when you can ask what they want to hear? Why greet them when you can greet and compliment them? As you set customer expectations for that first-time customer, remember that you can never be too accommodating!

3. Show Your Receipts

a phone screen showing social media apps

A strong social media presence is your best friend in this industry. Pictures of your work show exactly what you’re capable of doing. It shows new clients what they can anticipate. If you over-deliver, that’s great! Just make sure you always hit that quality level shown in the lash photos and videos.

4. Provide Strong Communication

a businesswoman talking on the phone in a casual office

It’s so easy for information to get jumbled, especially if you’re communicating by phone! The best way to set customer expectations is to clearly state exactly what they’re getting, as well as the corresponding cost. Don’t leave anything up for interpretation.

5. Adjust Your Approach As You Go

a stylist applying the finishing touches to a happy customer’s hair

Nobody starts out as an expert in beauty customer service. Each client interaction is an opportunity to learn. If you have a not-so-happy client, determine why, and then make changes. If you have a thrilled client, determine why, and do it more. Be willing to admit when you’re wrong and take a fluid approach. 

In Conclusion

You work for yourself, and client reviews are everything! That means you need to be disciplined with your approach to unhappy clients. If you set customer expectations in advance (and keep them realistic), life’s going to be a heck of a lot easier for both you and them! No matter what, try to maintain a positive attitude and an open mind. Those two things alone will go such a long way in keeping your first-time clients coming back again and again.


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