When celebrity hair and make-up artist Adriana Tesler and her husband saw the difficulty contemporary women and men were having finding time to visit the salon they brought their idea for the ‘Uber of beauty services’ to Crew.
As a high-end service provider, the ‘beauty house call’ (visiting her clients in their homes) lies at the core of Adriana’s business.
One day, she noticed the struggle contemporary women have finding time for themselves. As their lives get increasingly busier with work, children, and family duties, an appointment at the salon was impossible to fit in. Yet, the busier they became, the more they were being asked to look and perform their best in a variety of situations.
As an industry guru, Adriana also noticed that hair and make-up artists were continually looking for more work. So Adriana thought why not create an app that makes beauty services quick and easy to find by connecting contemporary women with eager artists looking to provide in-house beauty services?
With that, Adriana Tesler and her husband, Romain, founded BeautyFriend, an app that provides on-demand celebrity beauty services for contemporary women (and men).
With the idea set in place Adriana and Romain worked furiously researching the market and then formulating a business overview, model, plan, simulations, early wireframes, etc. Despite their passion for the project Adriana and Romain faced one major hurdle: neither had much experience in the tech industry and even less experience developing apps.
Find a developer
Realizing the code for the app was over their heads, they began a search for a developer. After initially reaching out to a large app development studio Romain and Adriana were stunned. The project was quoted at half a million dollars. $500,000 was not nearly what the Teslers had budgeted for BeautyFriend. With similar quotes from other development agencies, the Teslers were getting anxious. When a family member mentioned Crew, their excitement returned. They contacted the Crew team and set their budget within their means.
Because the Crew platform begins with establishing the budget up front, both the Teslers and any potential developers were aware of the scope of the project from the very beginning.
Crew paired Romain and Adriana with Kalpesh, an award-winning iOS and cloud solutions programmer. Having found their developer, the Teslers and Kalpesh hit the ground running. In a few months, they had a working prototype to play with.
One of the biggest challenges was to build the double interface for customers and beauticians.For example, Amanda, a working mother of two in San Francisco, needs a haircut from a celebrity hair stylist, stat. She opens up BeautyFriend and selects what she needs. After picking Celebrity Stylist and Hair, the available stylists display and Amanda selects the nearest stylist: Nicole Taylor. At this point, Amanda wants to get to know Nicole before she books her. She reads reviews, goes through Nicole’s profile, and opens up a chat with her through BeautyFriend. Amanda makes up her mind and books Nicole. Once Nicole accepts the request and payment is exchanged, Nicole and Amanda meet for their appointment.
This was a complicated process involving real-time messaging, payment systems, and different user experiences at both ends. Kalpesh solved the problem by tailoring the app experience to both parties. Customers saw one side while beauticians saw another. (Note: unfortunately, we are unable to specify exactly how Kalpesh solved the problem because it is proprietary information)
“Kalpesh was a terrific problem-solver, delivered on all his promises, and was very respectful of delays. The communication was open and great. We feel lucky to have found him… and would recommend him to anyone in a heartbeat. No challenge was too big, no issues unsolvable, and best of all, he resolved all of our problems himself, and delivered beyond our expectations.”
Then, with promising results from a test-run in a small client pool, they released version 1.0 of the BeautyFriend app. Releasing their first app was a dream come true for Romain and Adriana. But it didn’t come without its hurdles. The co-founders discovered that finding the right mix of business and design elements and developing an app is a good deal of hard work, and that finding the right developer to work with makes all of the difference.
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