How To Get Your First Microblading Clients (Workbook Included!)
One of the most beautiful things about this industry is the great degree of freedom it offers. You can choose to get a job with a studio, but most people become self-employed, and that’s great.
It’s great, but it’s not easy. You are the only person responsible for generating an income and that’s scary. It certainly makes you envy those people who have a guaranteed income every two weeks.
The cool thing is, the benefits of you making it in this industry being self employed will be so satisfying you will never look back.
Getting your first Microblading clients might seem like a daunting task at first. You’ve studied the technique. You’ve spent countless hours sketching hair strokes on your notebooks. You trained with models, refined your consultation skills and graduated from the training.
But what now? Are your clients going to start calling you or walking into your studio out of the blue?
It will take some time and some work on your side. But if you put in the hard work, in time you can guarantee your clients will start to pour in.
We have put together this list of steps you can take to make it easier to get started. There’s also a workbook you can download by clicking here, which summarizes this info and makes it easy for you to print out and keep it with you.
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1. Getting Started
First, you need to look into licensing. Your local authorities might regulate permanent cosmetics, or not. You could face serious trouble with the authorities if you are found to be in violation of regulations. So, spare yourself a future headache and research.
If you live in the United States, we have compiled a list of state licensing requirements for you.
Some of the most common license requirements are:
- A certification from a school and training hours
- A complete blood-borne pathogens course
- A Hepatitis B vaccine (or a decline form)
- Be associated with a licensed establishment for body art.
Whether it is a requirement or not, you should look into getting insurance. You need to have insurance, it’s that simple. In case of a lawsuit or any other nasty business, your insurance will have your back. Don’t skimp on the research and find an insurance agency that insures permanent cosmetic professionals.
Now that you have made sure you can operate legally in your county and state, you will need to start working on your portfolio. It is very important that you document every person you work on when you are starting out. Naturally, your portfolio will be the #1 thing your potential clients will want to see before they book with you.
It may be hard to get clients right away without having a portfolio. Consider offering your services at a reduced price or for free in exchange for practice. Many independent professionals do this when they are just starting out like photographers, hair stylists, graphic designers, journalists, etc.
Eventually, you might want to invest in a good digital camera. A good digital camera will allow you to take stunning before and after shots of your clients. We recommend a DSLR camera, a white backdrop and some good lighting. Cell phone shots will do just fine for you, too, but if you want to set up a beautiful website with high quality before and after shoots, this would be a good investment.
A camera and photography kit will be pricey, so if you’re just starting out, we recommend you use your phone. Instagram is the #1 platform for Microblading, so you need to make sure you get yourself a profile.
Make sure you set up a good profile that guides your potential customers to how to contact you. You will want to use a collage app for making your posts to set the before and after side by side.
We love PicsArt for making collages. It’s simple and offers a gazillion more options. It also allows you to easily add a watermark to your picture. You should always put your name or your Instagram username on all of your pictures. This will ensure no one appropriates themselves of your work.
Hashtag, Hashtag, Hashtag
Use hashtags! If you post something on your Instagram account and you don’t use hashtags, that post might as well be invisible. People find your profile because of hashtags. The more hashtags, the more visibility your post will have. Some of the most common and popular hashtags for microblading are:
- #PermanentMakeup (even if the image isn’t permanent makeup, it’s within the category)
- #SemiPermanentEyebrows or #SemiPermanentBrows
- #FeatherBrows or #FeatheredEyebrows
Instagram shows a count for each hashtag as you are typing, so you will known which are more popular. You should not discard one because it only has a few thousands. A potential client may find you by tapping on one of those less popular hashtags — you never know!
Spruce up your Instagram portfolio with videos to your feed. Videos are very popular within this industry on Instagram.
- Close up of mascara brush brushing the eyebrow hairs in the opposite direction. Shows underlying work of art!
- Client reacting to seeing themselves on a mirror
- Loop of client moving new eyebrows up and down.
2. Self Branding
No matter your position in this industry, branding is huge.
It’s important because this industry is about the individual. Your clients want to know about YOU because they are going to trust you with their face.
First impressions count. Don’t doubt it for a second. An unkempt and unprofessional appearance will cost you many future clients, so dress sharp.
Consider investing in some professional headshots. This industry is about beauty and image. You should portray that which you sell. A beautiful headshot will make all the difference in all of your social media profiles vs a pixelated car selfie.
You Need a Website
If you’ve always run away from technology and wrinkled your nose at words like “plug-in,” “widget,” and “domain,” we’re sorry to tell you you’re going to have to learn a little bit about this.
Luckily, it is now easier than ever to build an online presence and you won’t have to dish out thousands of dollars to build it either. Websites like WordPress, Wix, Squarespace, and Shopify make it easy for people without coding knowledge to set up a beautiful, user-friendly website to showcase their services.
You can build a free website with Wix or WordPress, but you will not have a unique domain. By this we mean, if your name is “Alice in Browland” your free website address will www.aliceinbrowland.wordpress.com.
If you need to keep costs down and don’t want to pay for a website, it is an option, but it is not very professional. It is very possible to create the website of your dreams with limited to zero coding knowledge and with about $100-200 USD. All you need is time and patience.
We recommend going with WordPress to build your website, as we have. WordPress is the most popular content management system in the world, as it powers millions of websites you would never suspect —27% of the internet, to be exact. WordPress allows you to build a beautiful website with little to no coding knowledge and makes it easy peasy to create posts, pages, etc.
You should know that there are two sides to WordPress: A self-hosted WordPress, where you can get “www.aliceinbrowland.com” without the added .wordpress.com, and there is free WordPress, which offers exactly that and with limited customizing capabilities. If you are confused about the difference, check out this article which does a great job of explaining it.
Now, before you buy your domain with that super catchy and cool name you want for your brand, you will need a hosting service. Hosting is what allows you to have your own domain name and it is a safe place to store all the files your site will generate, ensuring it is always accessible.
There are many hosting services, but not all them are good or worth your money. We recommend going with BlueHost. We have used it many times and love their customer service and affordability. Plus, they have a one-click installation of WordPress that will make it super easy to set up your website.
BlueHost includes a free domain (or several, depending on which plan you choose) and free access to WordPress.
After you get your hosting, you will need a theme. A theme is a predesigned set up for your website that allows you to basically drag and drop and skip tedious hours of coding. WordPress offers free themes, but for better customization, we suggest you purchase a premium theme.
A premium theme can cost anywhere between $29-60 USD, but trust us, it is SOOOOOOOO worth it. Who wants to (or knows how to) start a website from scratch when you can use a theme?
If you choose BlueHost as your hosting provider, they will refer you to the Mojo Marketplace to search for a theme there. From experience, we have found the Mojo Marketplace to be lacking in premium WordPress themes, especially when compared to ThemeForest.
Choosing a theme will probably be the most fun you’ll have in this whole process. ThemeForest has over 30,000 different themes to choose from, so you won’t lack choices there. We love that they not only offer a huge selection of themes, but also plugins and other things you’ll need if you want to get really serious about your website. They also have thousands of tutorials on nearly everything tech related that will certainly come in handy when you’re building your website.
A Catchy Name
If you are thinking of starting your own studio, you will need to come up with a good name. Take a look at the successful studios out there and see what’s working, but take your time. You don’t want to rush coming up with a name because once you name your business and start building your brand, it is not a good idea to go and change it.
Alternatively, you may want to just use your own name for your brand if you are not going to open a studio, and that’s great, too. Some artists use their name and a recognizable alias, like “the brow queen” for example.
Whatever you choose, make sure it is not already taken and that all of your social media and graphic design uses the same the name as it will help maintain a consistent image across all platforms.
Ditch the “@gmail.com”
If you decide to set up a website, which we strongly suggest you do, you should set up your email with your own domain name. Have you ever gotten a business card with an email that is …@gmail.com or @yahoo.com? It doesn’t look professional.
You can easily set this up with Google. Yes, Google has solutions for everything! Other hosting companies also offer this service and it might be included in your hosting plan, so make sure to check that out before. BlueHost, for example, offers the entire G Suite for business at $5 a month.
If you don’t want to bother with hosting for the moment, Gmail for Business is not expensive — It costs about $10/month, depending on the plan you choose. You will get a special price if you use our coupon codes, though.
Click on the image to sign up and get 20% OFF your first year by using these coupon codes: F637XTN9Y7MFG4P and V4VRYJLCCEMLJ36
It’s a great way to manage your email as you are probably already familiar with the Gmail platform and it is easy to add the account to your smart phone.
Guess what? Yelp isn’t just for looking up restaurants, it’s also a powerful business rating platform that will help get you visibility. If you already have a brick and mortar business, it’s possible your business already has a page. If so, you will need to claim it as yours. Here’s a good tutorial on how to claim your Yelp page. If you’re just starting out, you can create your business page and start getting reviews.
Also, the good thing about Yelp is that it runs on reviews, the modern day version of word of mouth. Happy clients will gladly leave a positive review on your Yelp page and that will increase your visibility as more and more positive review
If building a website sounds like something you’re not ready to do just yet, don’t worry. If you’re just getting started we recommend you start by making yourself a Facebook Page. Facebook pages have evolved so much in recent years that not having one can seriously set your business back and make finding your potential clients much harder.
Facebook Pages allow you to interact with your clients on a more personal level than a website and will enable you to be even more visible to potential customers by having a presence on Facebook, the most widely used social media service in the world. Also, a Facebook page is great for brick and mortar businesses or for freelancers. If you don’t have a studio just yet, a Facebook page will still be great for you to start networking.
In case you didn’t know, Facebook bought Instagram a few years back and they have achieved a great integration of both services. You can link up your Facebook page to your Instagram profile to get additional features and if you choose to run a Facebook Ad, it will also run on Instagram.
You know when you search for a business on Google and you see a little snippet on the right hand side of screen that looks like this?
Google Business is a free tool that allows you to edit a lot of information about your business to make it readily available to Google and anyone who uses google to find businesses (that’s basically everyone in the world).
You can read more about how it works here. For the meantime, Google Business is free. You can upload pictures of the interior of your business, you can add your location, phone number, website link and hours and read user reviews.
What’s really great about this is that if your clients are using their smart phone to find you and you’ve updated your location, they can tap on the “Get Directions” button and it will use the Google Maps app to bring your clients right to your door. Isn’t that cool?
Additionally, Google also offers their Google AdWords service, which puts your business at the top of the search result page for the keywords you choose.
All of this social media stuff will be easy peasy if you’re a social media native, but if you’re not don’t worry about tackling them all.
There are so many that dedicating all of your attention to all of them will be draining. You will stretch yourself so thin, not a lot will get done. Instead, consider sticking to the ones you like and know best.
If you can’t get enough of social media, get a Twitter account. Follow related accounts, like tweets and respond to questions to increase your visibility.
If you have a website, you know you need to have a blog in order to drive traffic to your website. If so, you could consider opening yourself a Pinterest account and make Pinterest friendly images for all your posts.
People tend to brush off Pinterest as a place for DIY projects and recipes. You’d be surprised just how much additional traffic it can get you.
3. Hitting the Streets
It might seem like a daunting task at first, when you’ve just graduated from your training course to get clients. But don’t despair — Rome wasn’t built in a day.
It’s hard to resist the allure of wanting instant success, but it’s not realistic. Building your business will take time and it will take a serious commitment on your part to get it started and spread the word about your services.
The first thing you’ll want to do when you are getting started is to spread the word: “There’s a new microblading artist in town, ladies!”
Find your Potential Clients
Start by paying a visit to all the hair, nail and lash salons, waxing centers and spas in town. Phone calls or emails will be easily ignored, so they are not advisable. Go in person and distribute your business card, talk to the owner or employees.
Tell them you’re starting out, they will relate and may want to help you because at some point they were just starting out, too. If you’re just building your portfolio consider telling them you’re looking for models and offering your services for free or a discounted price.
Consider offering a small commission if someone refers clients to you. This is golden and basically how the world functions. Target people in the beauty industry, particularly those who are well known. A beautiful pair of eyebrows is THE best word of mouth, but if it’s encouraged with a little money, it’s even more powerful.
Be sure to mention your training if you believe it could be a selling point. You need to make up for your lack of experience, and usually, telling someone you have been studying the technique for a certain amount of time or with a well known program will make seem more trustworthy.
Eventually, word will spread and you when you feel comfortable enough, you can start charging. A client who got their first microblading session for free and is extremely happy with the results won’t mind paying for getting top quality results again.
Friends and Family: Your First Clients
Who are your #1 supporters if not your family and friends?
Your family and friends will probably be your first clients as they already trust you, so tell them about your new venture and ask if you can do their brows. Post on your Facebook profile to tell all of your friends that you’re a microblading artist, ask your friends and family to spread the word. Your potential clients are everywhere: At the grocery store, at your children’s school, at the gym, at church, at work.
Bottom line of all of this is if you’re not ready to sell your services, you might have to reconsider the permanent makeup field. This is a field where you need to own your services and be proud of what you do in order to sell. Don’t be afraid to tell the world what you do!
Quality Over Quantity
While it is good to be ambitious, it is important to remember that you shouldn’t try to cram as many procedures as you possibly can in one day in order to have greater income.
First of all, this is not advisable for your own health. Work exhaustion is a real thing, people die from it in Japan!
Second, you should make sure you are delivering the very best of your services to your clients as you possibly can and rushing your work is NOT professional. You should schedule ample time, between 2-3 hours of your day to spend with your client so that they feel comfortable and safe in your hands.
A client who got rushed through a consultation and felt like you didn’t pay her attention is never coming back, nor is she going to spread the word about your services, so take your time.
Become an Authority in Your Field
Start speaking about what you do to anyone who will listen. Offer to write articles on the subject, or guest blog posts if you know of anyone who needs a collaborator. Maybe run an ad on your children’s school newsletter or church newsletter.
Join Facebook groups where you think you might find your clients. Beauty groups are a good place to start. But beware! Don’t be spammy and self promoting. People don’t tend to like that.
Be genuine with the information you have and contribute to people’s questions and inquiries for recommendations. A genuine answer will make them curious to check you out. They will click on your personal profile. Your personal profile should say what you do and where you work if you want higher visibility. That way, when a person clicks on your name, they will see you own a brow studio and will check out the page, then the website and eventually book an appointment.
See how seamless that is?
Wow! Thank you for sticking it out with us this far. We hope these tips can be useful to you. Just you wait! In time you’ll realize going into business for yourself was the best decision you ever made. We can’t wait to see what you come up with.
Feel free to share all of your efforts with us! We love to hear from you.
What out of all these things do you think will be the hardest for you to implement? How can we help?
Comment below! Until next time. 🙂