Showpony Director and founder, Stephanie Mason, checks in after a few weeks on the road, sharing her business nous with loyal clients and new accounts alike.
In this post-COVID world, I’ve made a point of keeping myself and my schedule open, so I can grab opportunities to travel whenever they arise. Showpony began and grew as a brand from me being on the ground, day in and day out, connecting and fostering relationships with salons and industry leaders. So the heart and soul of this brand is being out on the road and it’s essential to me that we never lose sense of that. It's so important to have that connection to the market, and you also get so many ideas and new concepts from being out on the road.
It’s been a true pleasure over the last few weeks to finally meet face to face with those in the Showpony network. Many I’ve known for years, so getting to finally connect in-person with our dear friends is a privilege I cherish. Technology today, and having the ability to video call different parts of Australia and the world is incredible, but I do believe nothing beats authentic human connection. We are very lucky, in our little corner of the globe, to still be able to travel, and I’ve appreciated every moment.
My recent trip started as any big event in life should - with a trip to the hairdresser. I kicked off the salon visits in Brisbane, in particular Jay Edwards at Edwards & Co, who always does my hair. He became a Showpony client years ago and we hit it off straight away. I make the most of my visits with Jay and we normally catch-up and fit in some business talk when we’re together. One of my favourite parts of this industry is the people you meet. There is a particular type of people who are drawn to hairdressing - they are usually outgoing and social people who love to have fun. Hairdressers like being around people, luckily so do I!
After catching up with the salons in Brisbane, I spent time in Sydney and then Adelaide. It’s been heart-warming to experience the loyalty and support we get from salons first hand, with many of our first clients complete Showpony loyalists, who swear they’ll never go anywhere else. It’s not hard to understand why. It has to do with our hands-on approach to building relationships and the dedication of our team. The feedback from our salons is always the same: Showpony customer service support is second to none.
Things I have learnt (and that make my heart happy):
- We have an incredible team. That's what I hear in every single appointment and that makes me proud.
- We have a real point of difference because of the support that we offer and the quality of our product.
- Our long-term relationships are proof of our success. In business, some brands come and go, but after 13 years Showpony is getting stronger as we grow.
Due to border closures, I was unable to travel to Melbourne and Perth this time around - so they are next on my Aussie travel itinerary. Melbourne was the original home of Showpony so our first ever accounts are there, and we have other long-standing relationships in both cities. I love to be out in the market as much as I can, meeting people, learning, and helping businesses where I can.
As much as I’ve enjoyed focusing on our Australian salons, I am counting down the days until international travel is possible. Showpony currently has salons in Poland, Belgium, Croatia, Ireland, and Denmark, and I would be thrilled to finally go and visit them. All five countries were launched just before COVID hit, so they’ve had to fly on their own. We do have a team over there to help support them, but I personally really wish I could have been there to help coach them through the last year or so. I’ll be on the first flight out as soon as we’re allowed! In the meantime, we are launching the UK digitally, and training our partners for three months - completely online. It’s wonderful that we’re able to innovate and push ahead, but I want to stop in the UK too, to see how I can best support them.
For now, I’m counting down the minutes to our upcoming global Showpony live events, both in-person and online, where we’ll explore all the ways our retail and professional ranges can transform both hair client confidence and salon business growth. We’ve also got some exciting announcements in the works (let’s just say I’m working on the mood board as we speak!), and hope to make 2021 a year to remember - for all the right reasons.