Friday, January 4, 2013

Rate My Look: Stellar Selling Hair

A little over a month ago, we had a little seminar with the sales staff at Madeleine's and one of the reps from Jenny Packham. We learned all about great selling techniques, specifically geared towards selling bridal gowns. Because let's be honest, we're in the business of selling dress. Yes, it's magical. Yes, it's emotional. Yes, it's all about "the experience" of shopping for the gown for the bride. But at the end of the day, we don't give these dresses away, we have to sell them. Or in my case, I have to sell the accessories.

In case I've never explained it before, on the weekends at my job, I take on a slightly different role from my Alterations Manager duties. I do accessory appointments with brides. It's a blast. When a bride's gown arrives in the store, she makes an appointment to try it on and shop for accessories. After all, you can't exactly pick out accessories for your bridal gown while you're wearing a pair of jeans. Accessorizing a bridal gown is tricky for most brides because it's something they have never done. The learning curve is steep and they rarely have any idea of what will look best. Fortunately, I have an excellent idea of what will look best, so those appointments are really fun for me. I get to be their bridal stylist and help them put together the perfect overall wedding look. Like I said, it's a blast.

Unfortunately for me and the store, many brides use this appointment time to get the overall look figured out, but then purchase little to nothing and tell me at the end of the appointment that they want to "shop around." They go to Etsy. They go to Nordstrom. They try to replicate the look I created on their own. They ultimately want to spend less money Sometimes they succeed, sometimes not. Every now and then you have a bride with a cohort who knows enough about sewing that they think they can replicate the style of the veil on their own. They snap photos, they scrutinize the details, they ask me how to do it.

I'm not trying to write a rant about the rudeness of wasting my time or anything like that. (That's another post for another time.) My point is simply this: after the seminar with the Jenny Packham rep, whose name is Petra, we all started referring to her sales methods as "Petra-fication." And we all resolved to utilize them in our appointments in the future. The first day we decided to do this also happened to be the day of our company holiday party. This is significant (at least to me).

That morning, when I was getting ready for work, I decided to spend a little extra time on my hair and actually put it up in preparation for the party that night. I teased and sprayed and bobby-pinned it into submission. Then I donned a basic black outfit (it being Saturday and all) and went off to work. My logic was simple: If we work till five and we need to be on the road to the party no later than six, there's  a possibility I might not have time to get my hair looking perfect for the party. I was just being practical.

As the day went on, and I incorporated the "Petra-isms" into my appointments, I found myself selling like a pro! Every bride bought every accessory that I put on her! It was like magic! I couldn't believe it! It was amazing and incredibly fun, to boot. The next week, I tried it again. I was only slightly less successful, and so I started to try to think about what I had done differently. And then it hit me: my hair.  My hair was normal for the next couple of Saturdays. And despite using as many "Petra-isms" as I could, I just wasn't selling quite as much.

So, this past Saturday, I did my hair again. I teased and hair-sprayed and bobby-pinned it to within an inch of its life. Then I donned another basic black outfit and went to work. I combined the "Petra-isms" with my amazing hair and guess what happened? I once again found myself selling like a pro! It worked! So, if you take nothing else away from this very long post, remember this: appearance matters.  (At least in my experience.)

I know you're probably dying to see this stellar selling hair, right? Well, wait no longer, friends. Here's the entire look:

This dress is so cool- it's a high-low hem and when I strut around the store, it flows behind me like a dream. The asymmetrical top is super chic, too. 

It's really the back of the hair that's so great: 

The feather and rhinestone fascinator really completes the updo and dresses it up like New Year's Eve. 

The pictures hardly do the look justice, but leave a comment anyway and tell me what you think. Would you trust me- and more importantly, my hair- to put your bridal look together? Or do you think I'm just getting better at sales?

And just in case you were wondering, NO, I am not wearing a Bumpit.


Gwendelyn Fristensky said...

Looking good Renee!!!

Beth said...

That dress is phenomenal! Great look!

Renée T. Bouchard said...

Thanks, ladies! :)

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