no sleeping not this month! ( thank god february is almost over!)
I'm deeply embroiled in the marketing aspect, that is getting the new business name out there. Advertising with yelp, deals with groupon, and putting myself out there in the trans community to do as much as I can for those that were amoung my roots.So, asktransgender AMA's is one way I have actually attracted a couple long term clients before. It was worth doing again.
My local trans group is a constant referral source, and much of my history in electrology in Ottawa has been helping out those who fall under the low income group of trans people. To put it mildly, the vast majority of these people live at near starvation point. When you are a transperson and have anxiety over hair, this can very quickly snowball into loss of self esteem, and in some cases, suicidal tendancies. I've always felt a particular draw to help those who fit into this category, having been caught in the trap that is OW or ODSP ( essentially disability and social assistance here in Ontario) . Helping these people will never ever pay for supplies or my time. What it will do however is have a posative effect on marketing and getting my name out there. It's my hope , it will also have a posative effect of
on certain statistics, specififically the suicide rate amoungst transpeople in my community.
How are suicide rates, and say, access to electrolysis linked? Well, it works something like this . As transpeople we are always subject to invisible discrimination. We often lose our jobs when we come out ( which is against the law, but it still happens anyway) . Then it becomes impossible to get employment, at least privately unless you hide who you are. Because of these influences many transpeople become fixated on "passing" that is, going unnoticed and coming across and being seen as , your true gender. When this doesnt happen, it often leads to constant or frequent unemployment, a lowered sense of self worth and self esteem, and usually depression. These high depression rates, serve to increase the suicide rates.
For several years I performed alot of treatments on people in my community for exactly this reason. IT never ever made me any money. That wasnt the point. In the case of nearly every person I helped, it was enough to raise their self esteem and self perception. Amazingly, none of the people I treated ever fell down in their depression to the point of making a suicide attempt, and I probably serves 20-30 individual clients in those early years. The statistics for suicide rates amount transpeople, is that 70-80% of those people should have made an attempt, at LEAST once, yet miraculously not a single one ever did. These people bucked the statistics, by seemingly , have something to raise them up and to fight to hold onto this world.
I simply CANNOT offer free electrolysis to anyone on ODSP or OW. IT is a disaster of a business plan. No matter what i do. But, how can I , as someone who fought and bucked that vicious cycle ,not be sensative to it?
And the people I helped out back then, ended up being my best marketing. I cannot count the number of times I have found during a consult that the person I've never seen before, knows someone else who got electrolysis from me and that is why they are there.
So starting in march , I am opening my clinic up for one hour a week ( during a weekday when bookings are lower) for an electrolysis Open House , specifically for the trans community.At these I , and any apprentices I work with,, will be offering $10 treatments, it wont be a lot, but enough to help some of the low income folks be more themselves and hopefully buck the cycle of unempyment, depression, and for many, suicide. I'm willing to expand that time frame to 2 hours, if demand warrants.I find it amazing that a cosmetic procedure, can do so much to to help with mental disorder?
This is exactly the type of work I was unable to do when working for someone else and subject to their billing policies and I'm happy to be able to offer it now.
My regular clientele have been extremely good to me in the last 2 weeks we've been open and they have seen to it , through their patronage, that I will be able to continue to pay my rent and expenses.That 1 or 2 hour period of my time is supported thanks to their patronage.