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Ystilo Salon: Beyond beauty

The brand introduced innovations.
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Talked into establishing the business by women in his family, Federico Moreno, took the challenge of shifting from trading goods to managing a beauty salon. Little did he know, it would also change the way he sees a customer-oriented industry and the art of selling lifestyle brand.
 
Creating a lifestyle
“With the advertising campaign that we’re doing, we want to sell Ystilo not as a brand, but as a lifestyle,” says the salon’s president and CEO, Federico Moreno. That way, he says, the Ystilo brand would be totally integrated into their customers’ way of life. And while their celebrity endorsers help, “At the end of the day, after customers go to your salon and had your service, the questions is, ‘Are they happy?’ We are very fortunate to have endorsers, but at the same time, we are very good in taking care of our clients. It still boils down to the end result,” Moreno affirms.
 
[related|post]Ystilo Salon is a certified success in both the beauty salon and franchising industries with more than 10 years into the business.

But in an industry dominated and patronized by women, Ystilo has certainly benefitted from a man’s touch. That man is the salon’s president and CEO, Federico Moreno—who is secure not only in his heterosexuality, but also of the unique point of view he provides for the business.

“It’s such an advantage,” Moreno says. “Females do the norm. But as a guy, I do something different. My female business partners think of the female aspect of the business, but the approach—in terms of running it and applying new ideas—it’s different from a male perspective.”

Started in 1997, Ystilo Salon was the brainchild of Moreno, together with his wife Sheila and his sister-in-law, the singer and actress Vina Morales  (Sharon Magdayao in real life). “We started conceptualizing way back [then] over bottles of beer. [Vina] wanted to have a salon. And during that time, my wife wanted it, too.” With 11 people as his staff, including stylists, and a total investment of P1 million, Ystilo Salon opened its first outlet in 1999 in Fairview, Quezon City.

A trader by profession who admits to buying and selling “everything under the sun,” Moreno found himself in the new and different world of the beauty and wellness industry—a place he was, at first, hesitant to enter. “I wasn’t worried on how difficult the situation was, but on how difficult the new world was,” he says. “The new environment was really different.”

While Shiela handled the salon’s day-to-day operations and Morales took over the marketing side, Moreno left his day job and decided to take up a Masters in Franchising hosted by the Asian Institute of Management. “It took us a long time to put up the franchise system. We had to educate ourselves about the franchising aspect of the business.” By their second year, Moreno and his team began preparing Ystilo for expansion.

In 2003, Ystilo began opening branches in malls, widening its reach. That was the key, according to Moreno: “Malls are a vacuum for people. If you want to go mainstream in the salon industry, you won’t make it if you don’t go into malls.”

Back then, the main challenge Ystilo Salon had was finding good people to join the team, specifically stylists. “During that time, there was a void in terms of very good stylists. People were going abroad.” Because of this, pirating stylists from competing salons became the norm. “But the thing about that is it really slowed down because of the initiatives we made, namely higher commissions. The piracy is not just local, it’s also coming from abroad.”

Still, Ystilo handled it well. “We’re focused primarily on our operations,” Moreno says. With an aggressive marketing campaign in mind, “by next year, we will relaunch Ystilo and that also means that my customer service program is finished already.”

That program is something Moreno is particularly proud of. With innovations like a Lifestyle Card Network, a fully automated SIM-powered card that stores customers’ history—attending stylist, products used, and other details—loyalty is created and incentives are provided to bring clients in. “When you say Ystilo, in the next three to 10 years, people will associate it with excellent customer service,” Moreno says confidently. “That is our passion right now and our program for the next eight months. In terms of service, we will be number one. It’s a tough market because we have competitors that are really well-equipped.”

And Ystilo will do that by changing the landscape. “We’re innovators,” says Moreno. “And I’m not just talking for myself, but the company. We do campaigns nobody does, we have applications nobody has, and we have our staff and our people. It’s very hard to be innovative in this industry unlike other industries. I would say it’s still the same product, just a different hairstyle,” Moreno affirms.

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To inquire about their franchise packages, contact them at:
www.ystilosalon.com
#24 11th Jamborree St., Brgy. Sacred Heart, Q.C.
(02) 927.7532
franchise@ystilosalon.com

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