Nicky Shore is the founder and owner of OFF Wax & ON Brow House. As well as pioneering microblading in New Zealand, Nicky also shows us the importance of a strong brand in running a successful business.

It’s a cliche, I know…but work ON your business, not just IN it.

Or at least work towards this. Stepping away from the short term, the doing, the reactionary, ultimately makes the difference between purposeful growth and accidental. Having time off the tools or away from the coal face helps you to see the big picture, look at things from alternative viewpoints (like your customers’!), make decisions, identify opportunities and ensure things happen in the right way.

Dress for the job you want

There is an element of ‘fake it till you make it’ with creating a brand in beauty. What you convey now has a direct impact on how people perceive you, and how people perceive you IS your brand. Think about all the cues and what they mean, invest wisely and be savvy. Your head office may be your bedroom but it is your head office, so sell it like one. Think about your fit out, your design, your visual cues, right down to how the phone is answered. All the little things to create the feeling that your brand is already there, not that you are working towards it when you get ‘bigger’.

Don’t be the expert at everything

With OFF & ON, we made a conscious decision from the start that whilst I would study, learn and be able to do anything and everything technically that our business does, that I would never look after a client myself. Bring in the experts to do what they do – because they truly are BETTER than you at it, and work on building more autonomy and empowerment in your teams to eventually mean they know way more than you do in how the business runs – it is scary but the only real way to achieve scalable growth.

Look at everything from your client’s point of view

Don’t always look at everything from the business’s point of view. It is so tempting to say ‘this is what we need to achieve as a business’, and in turn have that translate into a very different customer experience than the customer expected but also that you probably had designed. Don’t transfer your business day to day needs onto your clients and customers – that isn’t fair, and isn’t what they signed up for. Being able to separate the commercial requirements for the business from the delivery is the way to create a sustainable pathway. It’s so simple but if the customer is happy they will come back, and they will tell their friends. That’s how you grow smart.

Being brave is actually safer

Doing things differently is the key to long term success in this market. Without this the offering becomes homogeneous and hard for a customer to decide why to stay with your or switch from their previous brand to try you. You have to give them a reason. Be brave to carve out your point of difference for customers to attach themselves to and stay for. Focus on it, nurture it and sell this – otherwise you will always be at risk in the sea of same-same. Just because the ‘beauty’ industry has certain cues that you see everywhere doesn’t mean you have to do all of them to be a legitimate beauty business – define your own. People want different, we just have to take the risk to give it to them.

Be brave.

Nicky Shore is the founder and owner of OFF Wax & ON Brow House. With clinics across the nation, cutting edge technology, and an army of dedicated staff, Nicky Shore has firmly cemented herself as the industry’s leading expert in taking it off and putting it on.