8 Ways To Book Tattoo Clients More Effectively

business Dec 05, 2020
One of the tattoo artists’ most time-consuming parts of a working day is appointment booking. By considering these eight different ways to book more effectively, you will notice a significant change in your workflow and your income.

1 - Shop Manager

One of the most effective ways to book is to have a shop manager book for you – this is great for bigger shops that can afford to employ a receptionist to make all booking, answer phone calls, and posting on social media. If you can’t afford to hire one, you could consider having your apprentice doing some of this, or maybe a volunteer that could work for their free tattoos. 

2 - Online Booking

If you have a shop manager or not, I genuinely recommend getting a secure booking system. No more paper books, remember that it’s 2020. We use software or online systems that allow easy and fast bookings. In the tattoo world, it’s not easy to set up an online booking system for clients, since it’s difficult to know how long their appointment needs to be. However, by having the ability to book consultations via online booking, you will get more consultations automatically without even touching the appointment book. More consultations = more paying clients! 

3 - Tattoo Request Form

On the online request form at attitude.no, we have inputs like Describe your tattoo, Placement on the body, Size, Color Use, Preferred tattoo artist, and more. The client is also required to upload a photo reference to show the style they want. This way, we can quickly understand what the client wants to get tattooed, where, and in what style. It just makes all bookings so much easier.

4 - Double-Check Your Bookings

Every day, or at least weekly, really take a closer look at your upcoming appointments and take notes on what and how you need to prepare for them. Make sure you have the equipment you need, and that the design, or plan, is ready. Make sure you don’t get any surprises when the time comes, and the client is there, ready to get tattooed. Make sure you have added vacations and days off in the book, so you or the shop manager don’t double-book.

5 - Have A Plan, Not A Finished Design

Some artists like making a design long before the appointment, letting the client see the design via email, and then be able to make changes a long time before the session. Some make it one or two days before the appointment, showing it to the client at arrival, and making changes then and there. Some even start drawing while the client is sitting in the waiting room, waiting for their tattoo appointment, spending hours and hours on a piece of art, which the artist again copy to the client’s skin! I enjoy a highly effective way, which is making as much as I can of the design AT THE CONSULTATION but just a rough sketch. They can even get a copy or take a photo of my plan to bring home and reflect on. Then, 30 minutes before the appointment, I prepare by working on the design, making it more of a solid plan for our upcoming tattoo session. It doesn’t need to be a finished piece of art. If the clients trust you and your artwork, they know the tattoo will look even better when finished. Trust yourself to make an excellent tattoo without relying on a completed drawing!

6 - Effective Use Of Your Time

Greet the client on the DOT! Not only is it disrespectful to be late for your client’s appointment, but you will lose time, and remember that time is money. By not having those small breaks every hour, or spending several hours on the stencil, the design, or chit-chatting with the client or a coworker, your working day will be so much more income effective. 

7 - Charge For Every Minute

Do you charge by the hour? Or by session? Or by size? If you charge by the hour, it is essential, if not using a stopwatch, at least take a look at the time when you start tattooing and keep track of the time you spend on tattooing. It is not fair if your “timer” is still on during breaks and chit chats, so you need to remove this time from the final charging—some charge only for the time used for tattooing. I also charge for prep time, like changing the design, making the stencil, and placing it—this prep time I have set to half price of my tattoo hourly rate.

8 - Make Time For Relaxation.

It’s all about having order in your calendar and prioritizing breaks as well as the clients. If you have a client booked and you are getting done with the tattoo session, and you have another session scheduled after, try to keep the amount of free time as minimal as you can between clients. Yes, of course, you need to charge, give aftercare instructions, and say goodbye to your client before you tear down the station, wash your hands, have a quick sip of fresh cold water. My tip is to book your lunch break, coffee break, or phone call ahead of time if possible, so you can focus on that when the time comes. Add at least half an hour for just enjoying your lunch and stretching your legs. That way, you don’t have to rush when eating between clients, or to be late because you feel like having a quick cup of coffee.

That was it! I hope you got some valuable information from this post. 
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