In a sea of sameness it's a pleasure to come across a business that's identified a need, solved it and worked it into their business model. Earlier this week I popped into a nail salon in Charlestown, MA for a pedicure. I don't particularly enjoy pedicures, but I find them a necessary evil in order to keep up with the vanity of pretty toes in the summer. One of the reasons I don't like getting pedicures is I always recall the horror stories of people contracting infections from improperly sanitized tools.
So back to the nail salon - after picking out my color the woman charged with giving me my pedicure asked if I had a box at the salon. I responded no, but inquired as to what she meant. Apparently, if you plan on returning to the salon they'll set aside a dedicated set of tools for you. They go in a box with your name on it and you are the only one those tools are used on - brilliant.
With that simple gesture the nail salon has distinguished itself from the flood of others and alleviated fears of tool contamination. Sure, it costs them extra money to maintain a higher than normal supply of nail salon tools, but by the sight of all the boxes they also have a lot of repeat business. And we all know, it's cheaper to retain a customer than to find another one.
Image credit: Yips