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On Monday, September 12, 2016, more than 300 salon professionals from 12 states gathered at the Hyatt Regency Newport Beach for the Sola Sessions!

With a focus on brand building, marketing and social media in the morning, and artistic learning in the afternoon, the Sola Sessions featured top educators from various aspects of the professional beauty industry. The event featured education delivered by Sola Salon Studios, Passion Squared, Wella, Aquage, theFactory and Redken. Additionally, Hattori Hanzo Shears, Dermalogica, CND and KLASS Beauty hosted “Side Sessions” education throughout the day on a secondary stage.

We learned so many wonderful things throughout the day; we just had to share our top 10! Enjoy learning from the below…we hope to meet you one day at a future Sola Session!

1. Inspiration: “You Gotta Jump.” Kim Bennett Horvath, Sola’s Culture Ambassador and event Emcee, kicked the event off by sharing a recent Steve Harvey video about taking a leap of faith. As the first-ever stylist to take the leap with Sola, Kim inspired the audience to continue believing in themselves as business owners. She reminded the audience that sometimes, when you jump, the going gets tough, but you’ll never thrive without making that jump in the first place.

2. Brand Building: Know who you are for, and who you are not for. Nina Kovner of Passion Squared taught the audience that it’s so important when building your brand to understand and recognize that you’re not for everyone! In order to have a successful business plan, you need to know exactly who you are trying to reach.

3. Understanding the “Why”: Nina also touched upon why it’s so important to ask yourself who you are as a business owner and really dig into why you’re in business. She shared a Simon Sinek quote to drive home the point that “People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.”

4. How to Get Started in Marketing: Jennie Wolff, Sola’s VP of Marketing and Education, shared three tips that she recommends for getting started in marketing. 1) Learn something new every day; 2) Always continue trying new things; 3) Know when to bring in a professional. Throughout her Marketing 101 presentation, Jennie shared tips for where and how to learn by recommending Sola tools such as the Sola Pro video education and the Sola blog, where new topics are covered regularly.

5. What is Marketing? Jennie also gave an overview of marketing, calling the heart of marketing “storytelling.” She shared her recommended marketing wheel made up of 8 marketing tactics, including websites, referrals, Yelp and social media, that all work together to make up a recommended integrated marketing approach for Sola professionals. She shared that it’s not important to execute marketing in all 8 channels, but that it’s important to not put all of your eggs in one basket and rely on one marketing tactic to spread the word about your salon. 

6. Know Where Your Clients Are: Kelly Ehlers, founder of Ideas that Evoke and representing Wella at the Sola Sessions, covered the Art of Social Media. She encouraged stylists to find out which social media platforms their clients are on before deciding which ones to join. She highlighted the importance of knowing where your demographic is and starting a conversation with them there. 

7. Representing Your Salon Experience Online: Kelly encouraged stylists to create an in person experience that reflects their online experience and vice versa. She shared that once you know who you are and what you want to be known for, that clients should get that feeling not only inside your salon, but on your social media channels as well.

8. Artistic lessons from Aquage: Luis Alvarez, Nicole Gary and Nogodar Martinez never seize to amaze us, putting on a dramatic show featuring glamorous updos and beautiful styles for long hair. Stylists learned how to do a haircut with disconnection and also learned an easy way to do a chignon in less then 5 minutes! In addition, Aquage demonstrated a chanel cutting technique for long hair. 

9. Artistic lessons from theFactory: DJ Muldoon joined us with a surprise stage artist Manny San Martin. DJ shared his philosophy in hair cutting that “Knowledge Destroys Fear.” He demonstrated techniques for removing weight and length for shorter cuts (and also shared when it’s best to keep it). Manny displayed many ways to change texture and movement to his styled model. They both represented an example to step out of the "cookie cutter" way of being a hairdresser and unleash the creativity to try something new.

10. Artistic Lessons from Redken: Justin Isaac and Carmody Homan kicked off their show with a rowdy dance party, then got right into chopping it up! Justin demonstrated a bricklaying color technique that many Sola stylists had never seen before. From Redken, stylists enjoyed learning about blurring pop colors and color blocking along with trendy cutting techniques taken straight off the runway from fashion week.

If you missed the Newport Beach Sola Session, mark your calendar for an upcoming event! Join us in Charlotte, NC on Monday, November 14, 2016. 2017 Sola Sessions dates to be announced.

For more information about the Sola Sessions, please visit https://www.solasalonstudios.com/sessions

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