9545 Reseda Blvd. unit 2, Northridge, CA (818) 700-2818
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changing shops

I am thinking about changing shops I am currently working for a shop as a manager that gets a low to medium amount of walk in I am working on building a clientel. I was offered a position at a new shop as a manager with a hirer percentage the new shop doesn't get as many walkins thou just wondering if I should make the jump?


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RE:changing shops

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A bird in the hand is worth 2 in the bush, the grass may seem greener on the other side, but you still got to mow it. If it's not broke don't fix it. more percent of less money is still less money lol. I know these seem a little cliche. but my point is that perhaps you should focus on the problem instead of finding the solution.
I have had this type of conversation a hundred times with may others. everyone keeps telling me that my shop location could be better, and that if I moved I would get more walk ins. Although it is true that I have only Tattooed a handful of people from my city of about 500k people, I still managed to be booked up about 4-5 months out. I'm no superstar artist like Mike DeVries, but what I do have is networking skills and people skills. It really don't take much to build up a good reputation and relationship with people. if you focus most of your talent on the people it will come back to you so much more. Not to say you're treating your clients badly or anything, but there are so many ways that you can wow the customer into making you the talk of the town and have them come back with 10 of their friends on their next visit. A respected artist with less talent will get more clients than a killer artist that doesn't care about the people, or give them that extra attention that may not be necessary, but goes a long way. The absolute number one thing you can do that will help your career is to "never" speak badly of another shop or artist, regardless of what you might think of them. although during your sessions with your customers they will want to agree with you so that they don't feel uncomfortable. most of the time clients will look at you in a different light after your first sitting even though they have given you the false impression that they "like" you. I don't know how many times I have dealt with a client that doesn't want to pay my prices and I am more than happy to send them down the street to some local shop. however I try and tell them in the nicest way possible that, I'm really sorry that they do not see the value in my work or that they are more concerned about price over anything else. but perhaps the "guy down the street" may be able to give them what they want for a better price". This completely confuses most people because they don't understand why I would let them walk away. but at the same time they don't feel any negativity towards me for sending them there. sometimes you have to let the client make their own decisions and mistakes in order to gain their trust. One thing is for sure, I will never compete with local shops with price in order to gain the trust of the customer, because that level of trust is "paid for" with your discount not earned with your art. and as soon as you increase your price to its normal level, you will no longer have the support of these clients. The worst title you can have on your shop or the communities opinion about your shop or you as an artist can't be:
" Go to this shop man, they are the cheapest in town".

if you ever get that title, your career is over and you will always be that 20k a year artist, you'd be better off working at Mc Donalds because you will get the same level of respect.. make sense?
Another thing that I do that may help you to build your clientele is that I have set up a guest book page on my website for those that have been with me. and I ask my clients that if they could take a moment, would they mind commenting on my page to let other potential clients know what they can expect from me if they decide to have their work done by me or at my studio.
I have had some amazing customer feedback and it has influenced some clients to actually get on a plane to come see me, even for smaller tattoos. It blows my mind, but it shows that the customer service and feedback will build your reputation to a point that you no longer have to rely on local walk ins to build a clientele.
So what I'm really trying to say is, no matter how slow it is, or how many clients you get, the real reason is not the location of the shop or the amount of walk ins you get, or the percentage you make. It is 100% about the artist and what you can give the customer both on a professional level of artistic ability combined with customer service. Knowing how to network with your current clients to get others. knowing how to let people walk away in order to maintain your level of professionalism. Being true to yourself and not relying on others to help you. staying humble, and never put money ahead of your love of the art or the people. you should love your clients just as much as your art. it is the perfect potion for success. without them sacrificing their limited amount of skin to create your art, you are nothing.... The more you show this, and the more you show your appreciating to your clients about it, the more they will be willing to sacrifice more to help your career. As well as influence others to do the same for you.

I hope that helps man.


Take care.


Stephen Stacey
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RE:changing shops

^^^That was great advice. Thank you
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