Beauty app Flossie Concierge makes time for busy Wellington women
Beauty is a billion dollar business in New Zealand, with women choosing to spend more on grooming than telecommunications.
Flossie Concierge, a beauty technology startup is making waves in Auckland and its owner believes the Wellington beauty industry will benefit now it is available in the capital.
The Flossie app is the Uber of beauty, allowing women to request, book and pay for appointments using their smartphone.
Founder and chief executive Jenene Crossan launched her digital business in Auckland eight months ago and it is now used by 300 salons and 9000 customers.
The business has secured a third round of funding and future expansion to Britain and United States were on the horizon, but Wellington was up next.
The Flossie Conceirge app lets you request, book and pay for beauty appointments.
About 40 salons in Wellington central business district had signed up.
In the future Crossan hoped to expand into the Wellington suburbs but she wanted to see what response she got from the market and feedback from customers.
Crossan started Flossie Concierge after she saw customer behaviour change at her voucher business Flossie.com.
"By the end of 2013 we were seeing people wanted convenience and utility apps like Uber were taking off. Flossie gets people what they wanted and faster."
Women no longer made appointments in advance, she said.
"Wellington is a hectic city, with women trying make many things happen at the same time and with demanding schedules things just don't happen as quickly as they'd like."
Busy women were squeezing in a blow wave hairstyle and beauty appointments during lunch breaks or using the wi-fi at salons to continue working, she said.
She observed three types of customers who used the app:
Women who did not have a lot of time, but had money to spend and wanted an appointment 'right now', the discretionary spender who was busy but wanted to squeeze various beauty appointments into a lunch break and value savers who used Flossie to find deals and incentives.
Consumers were in a powerful position, with so much choice but the retail and services market had not been keeping up, Crossan said,
Flossie Concierge gave the power back to the consumer, allowing them to get what they want, she said.
This shift in power also benefited the salon industry, which was struggling to deal with a fragmented consumer market, she said.
Crossan said the app would help boost salon finances by helping to fill their books with appointments and gain new clients.
Jam hair salon manager Louise Aitchison has been impressed by the early results.
She recently signed up and was already seeing an increase in customers at the Ghuznee St business.
"We found it easy to use and it's great to fill gaps on quiet days. We hope the app grows and it helps our business grow as well," she said.
Crossan, who founded NZ Girl, said the 33 shareholders at Flossie had seen how the booking system app was changing the beauty business and were interested in how it could be applied elsewhere, such as in trades.