It’s no secret that the price of doing business is going up. With inflation climbing at a record pace in a time of consumer understanding and begrudging acceptance, many contributing factors have created the perfect storm in which raising your prices may be met with the least resistance. Join Ella, Maggie, and Tracy as they discuss the “why” of raising prices and most importantly how to set and implement marketable price increases.
ASCP Esty Talk with Maggie Staszcuk and Ella Cressman
Produced by Associated Skin Care Professionals (ASCP) for licensed estheticians, ASCP Esty Talk is a weekly podcast hosted by Maggie Staszcuk and Ella Cressman. We see your passion, innovation, and hard work and are here to support you by providing a platform for networking, advocacy, camaraderie, and education. We aim to inspire you to ask the right questions, find your motivation, and give you the courage to have the professional skin care career you desire.
About Ella Cressman:
Ella Cressman is a licensed esthetician, certified organic formulator, business owner, and absolute ingredient junkie! As an educator, she enjoys empowering other estheticians and industry professionals to understand skin care from an ingredient standpoint rather than a product-specific view.
She has spent many hours researching ingredients, understanding how and where they are sourced, as well as phytochemistry, histological access, and complementary compounds for intentional skin benefits. In addition to running a skin care practice, Cressman founded a comprehensive consulting group, the HHP Collective, and has consulted for several skin care lines, including several successful CBD brands.
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About Maggie Staszcuk:
Maggie has been a licensed esthetician since 2006 and holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Stephens College. She has worked in the spa and med-spa industry and served as an esthetics instructor and a director of education for one of the largest schools in Colorado before coming to ASCP as the Advanced Modality Specialist.
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About Associated Skin Care Professionals (ASCP):
Associated Skin Care Professionals (ASCP) is the nation’s largest association for skin care professionals and your ONLY all-inclusive source for professional liability insurance, education, community, and career support. For estheticians at every stage of the journey, ASCP is your essential partner. Get in touch with us today if you have any questions or would like to join and become an ASCP member.
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0:00:00.7 Ella Cressman: You are listening to ASCP Esty Talk where we share insider tips, industry resources, and education for estheticians at every stage of the journey. Let's talk, 'cause ASCP knows, it's all about you.
0:00:16.5 EC: Hello and welcome to ASCP Esty Talk. I am Ella Cressman, licensed esthetician, certified organic skin care formulator, and content contributor for Associated Skin Care Professionals.
0:00:26.8 Maggie Staszcuk: Hi I'm Maggie Staszcuk, licensed esthetician, and ASCP's Cosmetology Education manager.
0:00:32.3 Tracy Donley: Hi guys, and I'm Tracy Donley, Executive Director of Associated Skin Care Professionals, and I'm super excited again to be sitting here with these lovely ladies, and just chiming in, where necessary.
0:00:44.5 EC: I'm glad you're both here too today, because this is a really exciting, fun topic, and I think it's an important topic, and I guess it might not be super fun unless you're doing it.
0:00:55.0 TD: Some people feel uncomfortable.
0:00:55.8 EC: Yeah, it's an awkward but also a good thing. Let's talk about it. Because of many contributing factors, the price of everything is going up, and at an expedited pace. Right? As aesthetic practitioners, we have seen an increase in the cost of everything from cotton rounds to back bar products. This means our cost per service has, and continues to increase, but how about the price of our services? We know periodic price increases are normal, but how should we adjust to rapid increases in the cost of living, and the cost of doing business? Have you, are you, will you be raising your prices in 2022? Let's discuss.
0:01:34.3 TD: Ooooh, that's all I would say about that. Ooooh.
0:01:39.0 EC: Yeah, it's important to note that... What did you guys teach in school about pricing?
0:01:45.2 MS: That's an interesting question. I don't think it was directly addressed. We talked about know your competitors, don't price yourself out of the market, but there is no conversation about should you raise your prices? When do you raise your prices? And flat out, what should your prices be?
0:01:58.8 EC: I think that's one of the biggest failings in schools, is not talking... Having that business part.
0:02:03.1 TD: So how I would relate to that is that, I believe, and I've been in not aesthetics, but in advertising and in marketing and things of that nature, I believe that you should raise your prices every year no matter what. Whether it is, maybe this year it's 7%, maybe the year before that it was 3%. Because the bottom line is, there is always some kind of hard cost that is changing, and it's moving, and if you are getting your customers from the very get-go comfortable with the fact that, "Every June, Ella is gonna raise her prices" then it's expected. And, honestly, it's another opportunity for you to be able to do some kind of fun push package before you raise prices.
0:02:50.0 EC: Well, that's a great point, and I think what's interesting is, from 2010 to 2019, the average rate of annual inflation was 1.77%, but according to a USA Today article, inflation has hit a 40-year high in first quarter of 2022, and is now 8.5%.
0:03:07.9 TD: I know. It just keeps ticking up. I think last month it was 7.8%.
0:03:12.7 EC: Yeah, and it's not showing signs of slowing down whatsoever.
0:03:15.5 TD: No.
0:03:16.1 EC: So what causes inflation, this rapid inflation? 'cause this is just different. I remember when I started out, I think I have told you guys this before, I took my school prices and I doubled them 'cause I'm like, "I don't know what I'm doing." [chuckle] I thought that's about right.
0:03:28.7 TD: That's some logic. I like it.
0:03:30.1 EC: Yeah, and I think I was feeling a little insecure. I didn't wanna charge top dollar because I wanted to get people in, and I thought the self-worth was associated with my prices, and I'm just starting out, so this will be good and ran all kinds of deals or offered all kinds of discounts and things, and if I knew then what I know now, right?
0:03:49.7 TD: Oh, I think that's the story of all of our lives, isn't it? [chuckle]
0:03:53.7 EC: But this year, 2020... From 2020 on, there's been a lot of changes. Here are some of them?
0:04:00.4 MS: So inflation caused by the pandemic is American worker shortage, Russian invasion of Ukraine, raising rents, housing inventory, the industry is experiencing the perfect storm period for price increases.
0:04:12.8 EC: Inflation caused by the pandemic means that our supplies is not readily available. So the price of gloves for us has gone up, the price for all of our PPE has gone up. The price for wax, the price for goods, especially those that are still coming from overseas...
0:04:27.8 TD: Yeah, like towels and for your towel warmer. I'm sure there's tons of other things.
0:04:31.3 EC: Equipment.
0:04:31.9 TD: Equipment, oh yeah.
0:04:33.4 EC: And even bottling for, or packaging for some of the products that we carry so our products are...
0:04:38.8 TD: Are back-ordered.
0:04:40.1 EC: Back-ordered, and they're raising prices. The worker shortage is an interesting one because the... This is funny to me, and I don't... I'm not an...
0:04:50.1 TD: Economist?
0:04:50.8 EC: An economist. I can't even say the word. [chuckle]
0:04:52.8 TD: An economist.
0:04:54.4 EC: Obviously, I am an aesthetician. [laughter]
0:04:57.8 TD: Subject to.
0:04:57.9 EC: But here we have... We wanna... We have no workers, so we're gonna incentivize them, the workers, "Come work for me, I'm gonna give you this benefit, this benefit, this benefit." And to offset, you have to raise prices, like a livable wage or whatever. So we have to raise prices of our goods. So that means in order to afford them, these people have to raise... Everybody's raising prices, the cost of living is higher, but it's still...
0:05:23.0 TD: Well, and it's interesting because I keep waiting... So everything's more expensive, gas to get to the place, the supplies that make the thing, the workers that work there. I keep thinking like I'm gonna go to a restaurant one of these days and no one's gonna be in there. No one's gonna be eating out. They're gonna be like... It's gonna be... I'm walking and I got the restaurant to myself. Nope, every place I go, it is slamming. The reason that maybe they wouldn't have... It wouldn't be slamming is 'cause they've only opened up one section 'cause they don't have enough workers. So like that, and I keep thinking, I'm gonna go to the mall and it's gonna be like, "Hello." No, no, I am dodging people like nobody's business. So I think that as consumers, we wanna consume still.
0:06:08.6 EC: We wanna consume and we recognize that these things are going on. Like Maggie mentioned, the Russian invasion of Ukraine has caused oil prices to go up, the raise in rent has caused people to work more, or the housing inventory's gone down, so, or the supply chains so when we are available or these restaurants that we wanna go to. When we go there, we know that to go to a restaurant we're spending a lot more than we were.
0:06:34.1 MS: Yeah I wonder if what you're experiencing Tracy is like the lipstick effect, we're in a lot of turmoil right now.
0:06:40.0 TD: Yes.
0:06:40.1 MS: But going out to the restaurant, shopping at the mall, it makes us feel better.
0:06:44.0 TD: It's true. And even if normally I would shop at the mall and maybe I'd buy $75 worth of whatever I didn't need. Maybe now I'm buying $10 worth. But I'm still walking the mall and I'm still looking around and still oohing an eyeing.
0:06:58.9 EC: Or you're buying from 10 different places. [laughter] $10 worth of stuff.
0:07:02.1 TD: Yeah, yeah.
0:07:03.5 EC: And I think we expect it right. We expect the price of, to be different for the lipstick. We expect the price to be different for the homes, we expect the price... Well, now we're dealing with the fact that our gas is higher, so we expect the price to be different. And that's like what Maggie said, this is the perfect storm period for a price increase.
0:07:25.2 TD: Yes.
0:07:26.2 EC: I think over the years, I don't know if you've experienced going somewhere that had a price increase. Whenever I have increased prices, it does feel really awkward. It feels really awkward because you have to explain.
0:07:37.0 TD: Do you have to explain or are you explaining 'cause you feel bad Ella?
0:07:40.9 EC: Well, for your self worth, you are explaining, "Hey, I'm raising prices. It starts to this date. And people do Ermm and ahh." Not anymore. Have ermm and ahhed. "Oh, I don't know if I can afford it." Or those things then that makes you feel like, oh gosh a sense of fear that you're gonna lose that person.
0:07:58.8 TD: That's a question though. So let's say you've had a client for 20 years and they've been getting products and facials and services from you forever. Do you have to when they come to the checkout and you say, "Okay, that'll be $95." Do you have to say, "And you'll probably realize that it's $10 more than it was the last time. And this is why, or do you just say it's 95 bucks?"
0:08:24.7 EC: Well, I looked into it. I looked into it. I looked into it 'cause I wanted to understand [laughter] what's the best thing to do. And while I was looking into it, I thought, okay, this is what I was thinking about. If you're raising prices, how do you raise prices? Why do you raise prices and to what do you raise them? And so the first thing I looked at, we live in Colorado, So I looked at the Colorado median income and Colorado median income is higher than the national average. And we live... I live in the Denver Metro area and that is significantly higher than any other area in the state. In fact, I think it was just reported that Denver's number five on one of the most expensive states under Miami, New York, San Francisco, and one other one, I don't remember.
0:09:05.2 MS: Bummer. [laughter]
0:09:06.5 TD: I was just gonna say it...
0:09:08.1 EC: Then I took a very unofficial Facebook poll for this group, there's about 6,000 estheticians in this Colorado group. And I wanted to understand what are you charging? What are you charging for... Let's find one metric, and that metric was a 60 minute facial because that's pretty standard. Most people, regardless of are they spa, or are they corrective? They have some kind of one hour mark. Okay. So I wanna understand "what are people charging per hour?" And this very unofficial Facebook poll yielded these results.
0:09:36.6 TD: I'm dying to know.
0:09:37.5 EC: 52% said $76 to $100.
0:09:41.2 TD: That seems so cheap.
0:09:41.9 EC: For an hour. 36% said a $100 to $125 and 9% said under $75.
0:09:49.9 TD: Oh, shut up. Can I get their number? [laughter] I'm just kidding.
0:09:54.1 EC: But one person said this posting has made me realize I need to raise my prices. But it was just about gathering information. So then I posted another question. What are the reasons for not raising your prices? And I asked three questions and asked them to vote. 48% said, "I'm not sure how to raise them." 48% said, "I'm afraid to upset my clients." And 3% said, "I haven't gotten to it yet." 1% said, "Because of my demographic."
0:10:21.7 TD: Wow. So that is very personal responses. Not analytical responses to your question.
0:10:29.1 EC: Let's talk about why you should raise prices. The first reason why you should raise your prices is because you're worth it. Right, Tracy?
0:10:36.2 TD: That's right.
0:10:37.2 EC: Yeah. So you're worth it. You're worth raising your prices. And that is something that I had struggled with previously of feeling the struggle of self worth versus charging. Not anymore. Let me tell you.
0:10:47.4 TD: Listen, no one's out there to do public service. I mean, that's the thing, right? You're a business owner, act like it.
0:10:54.1 MS: That's where estheticians go wrong. And I think that says a lot about who estheticians are. They are emotional people, nurture...
0:11:01.0 TD: They're lovers.
0:11:02.0 MS: They are not separating themselves from the business. And I think that's what those percentages indicate.
0:11:08.9 TD: Oh, they definitely do.
0:11:09.8 MS: And I think that 52%, the 76 to a $100, I bet those people have never had a price increase. If I think back to when I was at first an esthetician, a 60 minute facial was about $60. So if you look at this 52%, that's a $76 to a $100. Those people probably have opened up shop and never thought about increasing their price again.
0:11:32.4 TD: But they have been getting price increases. I can guarantee it on product, on leasing space on so many things. That's... As a business lady that is so hard for me to hear people, It really is. [chuckle]] It is very hard for me to hear like...
0:11:48.1 EC: Again, unofficial poll. But I think as Maggie said, that's a really, really good thought, right? Just because they're tied, they're not separating business from theirselves. And so I think that's why it's important to understand that you are worth that much. And the second one is you are a business...
0:11:48.1 TD: You are a business.
0:11:48.1 EC: That there is business... Or you're separate from your business but you're running a business. And if you think about raising your prices, you will be able to invest in your business and make your business better.
0:12:16.9 TD: And be able to give your clients more and better. If you're doing that, you can actually even... If your clients let's say are asking for blah, blah, blah treatment or this newest modality or whatever, how are you ever going to be able to deliver that to them if you are not investing back into your business by raising your prices? I mean, come on, if you need to think about it, like you are caretakers and you are givers and you want to give results to your clients, then think about it like that.
0:12:48.4 TD: Hey, guys, stop. Let's take a quick break.
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0:13:28.9 TD: Let's get back to the conversation.
0:13:31.7 EC: Another reason that... This is from a lot of digging too, that I found reasons why you should raise your prices is because it boosts your perceived value and your reputation. People want the best. And they want to get into you, if you're not booked, if you don't have any openings, for example.
0:13:48.7 TD: When you have to wait two weeks or a month?
0:13:51.4 EC: Six weeks for me, like I'm six weeks out.
0:13:53.2 TD: Oh see? A perceived value over there is high.
0:13:55.2 EC: Yeah, and I say that...
0:13:56.0 TD: Is that what she's saying over there, Maggie?
0:13:57.4 MS: That's what she's saying, yes.
0:13:58.5 TD: I think so.
0:14:00.1 EC: I'm booked out. Once you get in on my schedule, it's easier for you to stay in on my loop, which is another selling factor for me. But getting in is hard. That's the perceived value. And that's why, I mean, honestly, you guys, I don't charge enough. But that's why I charge the prices I charge and then people who are in understand that. And that is what has elevated my reputation.
0:14:20.9 TD: I think that all makes tons of sense.
0:14:23.0 EC: And in fact, that was one of the comments was so funny, like all the different responses that were on there, they were all amazing. And a lot of people felt that emotional side that you're talking about Maggie. They were like, "Well, I charge this much and this much." And I'm like, "Is that for 60 minutes? No, that's for... " They wanted to explain their process. And no, "That's for this kind of and for that kind and that's for this kind, and one of them charged $275 for 90 minutes.
0:14:49.0 TD: Yeah, I've had a $275 facial.
0:14:51.0 EC: Do you go back?
0:14:52.1 TD: No, I sure didn't.
0:14:53.1 EC: Okay. [chuckle]
0:14:53.6 TD: I didn't care for it. It wasn't really... [laughter] Honestly, I didn't again.
0:15:00.8 EC: The value wasn't there.
0:15:00.8 TD: The value wasn't there, but the way it was advertised and the way it was promoted and what I thought I was gonna get from it, I paid it, I made the appointment, so you know.
0:15:12.4 EC: Well, then this is not related to that comment, but the other reason that you should raise your prices is to weed out difficult clients. [laughter]
0:15:20.0 TD: I am not a difficult client, I'm just a little wishy washy.
0:15:24.9 EC: I've had difficult clients and I don't book them.
0:15:27.2 TD: Yeah. But it is...
0:15:27.5 EC: Super busy for a long time.
0:15:27.7 TD: No, I get it. Maybe that's what people are doing. Now, I didn't go back to them. They didn't fire me. I have been fired before though.
0:15:36.4 EC: Really? [laughter]
0:15:36.9 TD: That's a whole another podcast.
0:15:40.2 EC: That would be fantastic. I almost got fired this week from somebody.
0:15:43.7 TD: Do wanna go through all the different professionals who have fired me in my life [laughter] as a consumer?
0:15:49.7 EC: Coming soon.
0:15:50.7 TD: Let's not.
0:15:52.4 EC: So then I got on Gloss Genius, which was an interesting they had a... And again on Gloss Genius. They had an interesting article, because I weeded through so many different articles to find like what was the most relevant information to bring specially to this podcast. And this is one that answered kind of a lot of the questions from that very unofficial Facebook poll. And the first one is, how do you figure out how much to raise your prices? So the first question is, what is my base price? And to get your base price, you have to do what Tracy was talking about. You have to look at all of your business's monthly expenses, not just, "how much does it cost me to do this treatment or this service?"
0:16:29.0 TD: And if you want to do that, sorry, quick promotional plug, you can actually do that very easily in ascpskincare.com, if you're a member and go to the career toolkits, and there's a calculator and it asks you questions just like TurboTax. Okay, continue.
0:16:42.7 EC: I love that. So you can put in things like rent?
0:16:45.8 TD: Yep.
0:16:45.8 EC: Electricity?
0:16:46.7 TD: Yes. It asks you all those questions.
0:16:48.2 EC: Products, the tools, replacing it, like I literally had a Maglite break on a client though. Not on top of them, near them.
0:16:56.0 TD: 'cause that would be a Oopsy doozy.
0:16:57.3 EC: Thank goodness I was covered, but it broke near them and I had to that day get a overpriced Maglite, but you know, to go to that.
0:17:05.2 TD: That happens.
0:17:10.2 EC: But everything else that you need, consider all of those things that it takes to keep the lights on and the doors open. Next, look at the average number of clients you are seeing currently per month to calculate your base, not what you want, but what you currently have.
0:17:18.7 TD: And we actually have a calculator for that too. Did you know that? And it's called the revenue calculator. So it'll help you figure out what you'll make for the week, for the year, based on the number of services, based on the cost per service and how many you wanna do. And if you don't like the answer, then you keep going back, but it'll tell you exactly what you need to do.
0:17:37.5 EC: I did not know that. I wish I had that.
0:17:39.9 TD: Okay. So please.
0:17:40.7 EC: I'm going to try that out.
0:17:41.7 TD: You should go try it out.
0:17:42.6 EC: It just gives a certain price right?
0:17:43.3 TD: Yeah. And why don't you post your answers on Instagram?
0:17:48.8 EC: I will comment on Instagram if I... I'm just gonna do thumbs up or thumbs down.
0:17:52.6 TD: Oh, okay. No, don't really like, thumbs up or thumbs down. That's crap.
0:17:56.9 EC: Do you want them to see all my business?
0:18:00.3 TD: No, I want to like... Yeah, I do.
0:18:02.0 EC: Okay.
0:18:05.6 TD: They do, too.
0:18:06.4 EC: Okay.
0:18:06.9 TD: They wanna know how much you price for your facials.
0:18:09.1 EC: You want to know how much my rent is?
0:18:10.3 TD: Yeah. Good deal. [laughter]
0:18:13.2 EC: Question number two is, What are other professionals charging in my area? This is something you talked about that you were doing in school.
0:18:19.0 MS: Yeah. Know your competition.
0:18:20.8 EC: Know your competition, understand what your area's average household income is. So thats goes to that one person who said that it didn't work for her demographic to raise her prices, but that way you're not undervaluing yourself, you have to understand, like we talked about... In Denver, all of the people who posted those prices myself included, are underpriced for...
0:18:40.4 TD: That's nut.
0:18:41.3 EC: Yeah. Research other independent pros around you and what they charge, and see what's going on and don't aim for the bottom, aim for the middle or higher.
0:18:50.7 TD: Aim for the top people 'cause it's perceived value. Just so you know.
0:18:55.0 EC: Well, how do I understand that, am I lower or higher? In that range.
0:19:00.6 TD: Mm hmm.
0:19:00.6 EC: It goes to question number three. So question number three is, "does my pricing reflect where I am in my career?"
0:19:05.3 TD: Oh, excellent.
0:19:06.5 EC: Yeah.
0:19:06.7 TD: I love that.
0:19:07.4 EC: Whether you're just starting out or you've been in it for years, think about how your pricing reflects all of these experiences and training you've had up until now, which is interesting because, we talked... Tracy we talked about this a while back on the difference between aesthetic industry and the hair industry, where the hair industry, the more... The longer you've been in service to the more up the training go...
0:19:26.9 TD: They just keep... They keep taking you up...
0:19:29.8 EC: It's like you're an apprentice then master level, but there's not an apprentice or a master level aesthetician.
0:19:34.3 TD: That's interesting.
0:19:35.6 EC: What do you think about that?
0:19:38.4 MS: I... In some states, there is aesthetician and master aesthetician, but generally speaking...
0:19:42.1 EC: That's true.
0:19:42.5 MS: Yeah, you're right, and I think this is where continuing education for aestheticians becomes so important, and you have to show all of those certificates, people post them on their wall, you see it on their website, their bio, and I think the consumer is aware of that too.
0:19:57.7 TD: I love that so much Maggie, like I do. Like you go into a doctor's office, dentist office. Do you see how their certificates are hanging on the wall? You sure do.
0:20:07.4 EC: My walls aren't that big, I'm scared...
0:20:09.8 TD: Oh my Lord, but I'm bomb, yeah. But that is that level of master aesthetician, right?
0:20:14.8 EC: I don't wanna come off as arrogant, I'm just teasing...
0:20:18.3 TD: No, you're not.
0:20:19.2 EC: But I would... I do share those things... I do share that excitement though, with my clients, "Hey, I'm going to a training." They love when I take time off and I'm going to like a trade show or a class, I'm taking a class, they love that because they come back and can I try this on you? Or I'm trying a new product, they love to be a part of that, and I can't believe my esthetician just got this certification, whether you're doing like relamenition or advanced exfoliation, whatever those things are, those are exciting for you as a practitioner, but also for your client base.
0:20:51.1 TD: Yeah, and I think you should demand more money.
0:20:54.0 MS: I think too, it builds a trust with your clients, like you're saying, you're telling them that you're taking this training, can you try it out on them or they wanna know all about it, that's just... That's building the rapport. I think that's important.
0:21:08.1 EC: I think so too. And I think that you can be proud so when we were talking about self-worth earlier, like be proud that you've done those things, not necessarily to... Post them on your wall, if you want to, but otherwise reflect that in your pricing.
0:21:19.9 TD: Yeah, and... I mean, everybody wants to be proud of the professionals that they affiliate with like, right? You wanna brag it up, right? Yeah, I think it's great.
0:21:29.9 EC: Now we get to the dun dun du-un.
0:21:31.0 TD: Oh.
0:21:32.0 EC: This is the ouch...
0:21:32.7 TD: Is it a cliffhanger?
0:21:33.8 EC: This is the one that you were asking about earlier is... Question number four is, how will I share my prices... My price increase with my clients?
0:21:40.4 TD: That is definitely the dun dun du-un.
0:21:42.1 EC: What's the right approach? Do you share the news or do you break the news?
0:21:47.3 TD: I would share the news, I suppose, maybe not report the news at all, just sooth it, you like play a game on them, see if they figure it out, I'm just kidding, that sounds like really unethical, so I'm joking everyone.
0:22:00.1 EC: Have you been on the other end of that where you've gone up and like "Oh, this is a lot more expensive than before."
0:22:05.3 TD: Yeah, when I went to Wendy's just the other day. No, I'm serious, they didn't update the menu, I'm not joking. And it kind of made me mad and it was like, These boys that were working at the Wendy's drive-in, I think they were a little sketchy, so I wasn't even sure that I believed them that they were charging the right price. I thought that they're trying to scam some cash from me but, yeah, I didn't like it. So that's... Thank you for reminding me. Yeah, so I hated it.
0:22:26.8 EC: So that goes to like sharing versus breaking, have you had that experience, Maggie where you were like... You've gone somewhere and you're like, "Wait a minute" or...
0:22:34.3 MS: I haven't been blindsided like Tracy is talking about, but I definitely have had companies send out the newsletters saying, "Hey, guess what, our prices are increasing." and they provide the whole explanation, I don't know, I'm pretty cynical so my reaction is, "Yeah, yeah, you now, here it comes."
0:22:51.5 EC: How do you feel now, like this year, do you feel the same cynicism?
0:22:56.0 MS: Always that will never go away but my perspective with this year is that everybody is expecting it from every company now, and so the whole point of this podcast is, this is the time to do it, don't shy away from it and your clients are gonna expect it and don't feel like you can't raise your prices or that you shouldn't announce it, and absolutely, you are facing it from your landlord, your manufacturers, etcetera, and so now present this to your clients and don't present it...
0:23:31.3 TD: Like you feel bad for yourself...
0:23:33.5 MS: Yes, thank you.
0:23:35.1 TD: And don't present it like being a softie, like, "well, for you, just this one facial, I'm gonna keep it the old way." because it becomes a slippery slope, they're gonna want a negotiation and a deal for the rest of your life, just like own it, take the big bite and then swallow and then you're out of there.
0:23:57.2 EC: I think for me, one of the things that I did, I wish I would have done it a little bit later, but in anticipating the rising cost, I did it in December for January, so I said, "Hey, just so you know... " so... Because I'm on like a two to... Two to eight-week cycle with my clients.
0:24:14.3 TD: Yeah.
0:24:14.3 EC: I started in early November, just so you know, at the beginning of the year, we're gonna be raising... We, it's just me now. I still say we, it's like me and my other personality, that I'm gonna increase the prices and that, "Oh, do you know what it is? I do know what it is." So some people got in twice before that happened, but that... Yeah prices will be increasing on this January 1st, and so I didn't offer some of those one-time discounts for you, I used to have these OG client discount that I would give people.
0:24:41.0 TD: Yeah.
0:24:41.3 EC: And I didn't do that this time... This was the first time I didn't do that...
0:24:44.6 TD: I think that's good, because I think... You get spoilt. I remember when I got cut off from an OG discount scenario.
0:24:52.0 EC: Yeah.
0:24:52.4 TD: 'Cause it has to end at some point. And I remember feeling like...
0:24:55.6 EC: Not the insider track anymore.
0:24:56.6 TD: Yeah, and then it almost made me like not wanna go there anymore. 'Cause again I'm wishy washy.
0:25:00.8 MS: The idea though that you're saying it's gonna be coming up at this point, you can still get in until this point at the lower price.
0:25:09.0 TD: I love that...
0:25:10.9 EC: Yeah.
0:25:11.4 TD: Yeah.
0:25:11.7 EC: And I time that because sometimes in December, later December we're slower, so I timed it like that, anticipating that, and if nothing else they would come in and get product, you know, don't forget, and I didn't send out a newsletter 'cause...
0:25:23.8 TD: I don't think sending out... 'cause I think everyone is so skeptic, either they don't read it or they're like, "Yeah, yeah."
0:25:30.6 EC: Yeah.
0:25:30.7 TD: I think it's better to have the conversation.
0:25:32.5 EC: So how much are you going to raise? I don't know. Aim for 10%. See what happens. What are your thoughts?
0:25:38.9 TD: I think 10% is a great place to start, but I'm gonna just circle back to along what you were saying, when you were talking about analyzing your business, taking a look at what the costs are, taking a look at... And it doesn't have to be a special number. It doesn't have to be like, "Oh, it's 10% it's 20%." This is a great time just to overall analyze your whole menu of how you're pricing something, and like you said, what are your competitors doing? Look at the whole thing right now, 'cause I can... I would be shocked if everyone is doing that on an annual basis.
0:26:16.1 EC: And it's a good time to implement that annual thought process...
0:26:19.9 TD: Yes.
0:26:20.1 EC: Would you say, maybe there's a bigger jump now in 2022, hopefully second quarter, 2022, no later than third quarter, and then make an annual thing about whether it's your spouse's birthday, your shop's birthday.
0:26:33.0 TD: Yeah.
0:26:33.5 EC: Or some kind of a mile stone...
0:26:35.0 TD: I mean, it's 3% then, but you're gonna get them in the habit.
0:26:38.6 EC: Yeah.
0:26:38.8 TD: Maybe this is a big one. But then next year, 3%
0:26:42.5 EC: And if nothing else, you're keeping up with annual inflation.
0:26:45.6 TD: Yeah.
0:26:45.9 EC: And staying marketable and honestly, staying open.
0:26:50.1 TD: It's about... I mean, bottom line, I think that's a perfect place to end. It's about staying open.
0:26:56.5 EC: It's about staying open.
0:26:57.5 TD: It's about staying open.
0:26:58.6 EC: Now, listeners, we really wanna hear from you, what are your thoughts on raising your prices, is 2022 your year? And how are you doing it? Let us know, reach out on our social media platforms, especially Instagram and Facebook, or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. We wanna know all the details. In the meantime, thank you for listening to ASCP Esty Talk, for more information on this episode or for ways to connect with Maggie or myself, or to learn more about ASCP, check out the show notes and stay tuned for the next episode of ASCP Esty Talk.
0:27:31.4 S?: Thanks for joining us today. If you like what you hear and you want more, subscribe, if you wanna belong to the only all-inclusive Association for estheticians that includes professional liability insurance, education, industry insights and an opportunity to spotlight your sick skills. Join at ascpskincare.com, only $259 per year for all this goodness. ASCP knows, it's all about you.Page Break