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Like Family

A few years ago, John and Maria Scarduzio thought about retiring and selling the thriving salon they had managed together since 1978, in Drexel Hill, PA. But then they had a change of plans. "A lot of our clients have been coming to us for 27 years, and now their children and their children's children are coming," says Maria. "Closing the salon felt like saying good-bye to family."

 The Scarduzios have seen an average of 25 new customers a week since they opened Cuz'n Company Salon & Spa last year.
The Scarduzios have seen an average of 25 new customers a week since they opened Cuz'n Company Salon & Spa last year.

So instead of closing up shop, they moved their business to a new space three times the size of the old one and added dozens of new spa services to the menu. Since their new salon/spa, Cuz'n Company, opened in March 2004, the Scarduzios have seen an average of 25 new customers per week, and the regulars keep coming back.

What's their secret? Here, they share their tips for attracting new clients, while making the regulars feel comfortable in a new space.

Maria and John Scarduzio in their new salon space.
Maria and John Scarduzio in their new salon space.

ACKNOWLEDGE A CLIENT AS SOON AS SHE WALKS IN THE DOOR. "To make a first-time client feel comfortable, go the whole nine yards," Maria says. "Address her by first name, unless she requests otherwise, and offer her a cup of coffee. Give her a tour of the salon. And always, always remember to smile."

TREAT ALL CUSTOMERS EQUALLY. "Whether they're coming in for a $10 polish change or a $300 beauty package, we care for all our customers the same," says John. The only Cuz'n Company patrons who receive special treatment are the seniors. Someone is always on hand to open a door or help older clients maneuver around the salon.

DON'T SKIMP ON DESIGN. In the previous location, the spa area was small and lacked a true spa ambiance, so the Scarduzios hired an architect to help design the new layout. This time, they didn't want the spa to feel like a careless side project, with a few haphazard rooms reserved in the back for massages. They went for Tuscan warmth, using colors like amber and terra cotta to make it feel cozy. The result is a spa area that serves as a truly satisfying, relaxing retreat that delights the regular clientele and entices new patrons to drop in for a visit.

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About the Author

Carrie Watson

Carrie Watson