Have you ever had the experience of walking into a spa and feeling uneasy? You could have been thinking, "Why am I feeling uncomfortable? What's going on here?" Even if a spa looks great visually, what people experience goes beyond what is seen physically. For example, the spa may or may not be aligned to the cardinal directions, have windows in the east or north, or have the reception desk in the correct place energetically for the best effect. Moreover, there could be geopathic stress creating uneasiness in the environment. Through the ancient science of stress-free living, vastu shastra, spas can learn the science of building and designing in harmony with nature.
In the spa, retail product sales typically contribute between three and 10 percent to gross sales. While it is tempting to focus primarily on the treatments and technology the spa offers, ignoring retail space erodes the bottom line. If the spa is making less than 10 percent of its gross sales from the retail area, the professional is neglecting both the retail space and their profit potential. With training, they can realize a return of 30 to 40 percent.
Welcome to 2017! Are you one of the 53 percent of small businesses that make New Year's resolutions? More than half of business owners say they are more likely to keep business resolutions than personal resolutions. Today's technology makes it easier for spa owners to manage and grow their business without taking time away from the work they love. However, with so many options to choose from, getting started may seem overwhelming. Consider starting with three major functions of the business and finding the tools that can help to take them to the next level in order to make it easy to keep this year's resolutions.
Owning and operating a day spa is an enormously satisfying career for many men and women. The opportunity to improve the well-being of so many people can be enormously gratifying. Creating a space of serenity and rejuvenation is often a labor of love. However, spa owners and managers are entitled to make a decent living and earn a profit in the process.
Missed opportunities happen even to the best spas. They happen every day and skin care professionals often do not realize how many there are until the missed revenue is more than evident. By minimizing missed opportunities, spa owners can maximize client reach. The process may not feel or be easy at times, but it can be made achievable.
For most people, sales is often perceived as being sold something at all costs, whether it is needed or not. As such, most skin care professionals find selling to be one of the biggest challenges in their business.
They become more focused on treatments and less on retail sales.
Since the initial rush toward opening day spas began in the 1980s, the appeal of this business idea has not lost steam, even if the number of new players has. Skin care professionals, former spa directors, and even ordinary enthusiasts have all invested time and hard cash into beautiful facilities, both large and small, with the hope of becoming a runaway success.
Every year it seems as if the holiday season has arrived out of nowhere. One minute, the start of summer vacation is being celebrated and then, suddenly, jack-o-lanterns are being replaced with evergreens or dreidels. This holiday season, try some spa management tips to make it through the holiday season unscathed. While it is certainly not an all-inclusive checklist, the following are the mistakes that are most often made by spa owners.
Every new business owner aspires for consistent progress on their road to success. The smart spa owner will recognize when the timing is right to seize the opportunity to increase market share and formulate a strategic plan to capture it. Strategic planning using sound business tools will help professionals to achieve their goals.
Cultural Marketing: How Communication and Relationships Can Differ Due to Clients’ Cultural BackgroundsWritten by Mara L. Shorr and Angelica Pierini
The world is a diverse place that allows for the enjoyment of cross-cultural interaction. As a result, skin care professionals must be careful when trying to fit their spa’s culture into a sea of sameness because their demographic makeup greatly affects a number of factors including the methods with which the spa is marketed to clients and how they are communicated with once they are in the spa.
The key to upselling and cross-selling is suggesting value-added products and services that truly focus on clients' needs. Most clients do not want to be sold to, but do want to be serviced and are looking for solutions. The reality is that add-on sales do not just happen; they are carefully planned and executed and can result in significant revenue and profit for the spa.
On a daily basis, skin care professionals are asked about their service offerings. These clients are usually directed to the spa's website or handed a spa menu on a rack card. The client then books an appointment and becomes excited about the service they are receiving. At this point, the client is prepared to spend money, especially since they are spending money on themselves, which is a different form of everyday spending. This type of spending has more value; it has self-worth.
In today's highly competitive spa industry, success is reliant upon effective marketing with a focus on the client experience. Improving market conditions continue to increase the number of skin care professionals and spas at an average annual rate of 5.5 percent. It is predicted that by 2019, there will be 1.3 million professionals.1
Regardless of whether the skin care professional works alone or owns a large spa, their time is valuable and they need to ensure that they are working smarter, not harder, when executing their marketing plans. As a worker in the service business, skin care professionals must focus on new client acquisitions and maximizing client loyalty to stay ahead of the competition.
Successful spa events are the result of months of preparation. It is not uncommon for an average spa to spend 20 percent of their total marketing budget on events. During these events, clients can enjoy live interactions with other individuals, making them the perfect addition to a spa's engagement marketing strategy. Person-to-person interactions can pull in a prospect for conversion to the sale and upsell existing clients for additional products and/or treatments.
The new faces of beauty require fresh messaging and unique marketing methods. Millennials, Baby Boomers, and those who are multiethnic are some of the new faces skin care professionals are likely seeing in their spas. Knowing how to deliver a message that is customized to the unique skin care needs of today's consumers and keeps them coming back is a vital skill that professionals should thoroughly understand.
When skin care professionals create their spa's image, they are often convinced that it could not possibly be more perfect. They agonize over every detail they can think of, usually convinced that they have perfected every inch of their brand. Often times, professionals end up realizing that as time passes, their branding is no longer the perfection they once thought it was; they find that they cannot continue to run their business like they have in the past.
The spa industry has long had the ability to make a positive impact on the planet. There is no better time than now to ‘go green’ in the spa, given the undeniable benefits to consumer health and the environment. Creating a business practice that fosters social responsibility is just as easy as doing the opposite; it simply comes down to choices. Spa professionals are in a unique position to contribute positively to global sustainability through their purchasing choices and daily routines.
Dramatically boost spa revenue with a simple shift in mindset.
A simple shift in focus and mindset will make all the difference in a spa’s revenue potential. According to retailing experts, Tracie Wertz and Bill Barczy, an immediate increase in incremental profit can be achieved by promoting wellness through retail.
When it comes to increasing retail sales in the spa, it is vital for skin care professionals to create a positive customer experience. Creating a delightful experience for the client begins with the manufacturer or distributor, as they are key to increasing retail sales. The distributor must provide topical and educational content in an attractive format and the spa must deliver that content in a format that entertains and educates the consumer.
From using homecare products to a variety of professional treatments, people spend a lot of money to be hair free. Take commercials, for instance, which range from shaving to waxing to homecare lasers. There are even comedic hair removal takes on social media. The message is crystal clear, hair removal is big business! How do professionals tap into this widespread need?
Chances are that clients leave the spa with their appearance and health improved, a decreased level of stress, and an elevated sense of self-esteem.
How do you make a connection with your clients that goes beyond skin deep? How can they benefit from your talent and guidance beyond the four walls of your treatment room? Most importantly, how do you harness technology rather than letting technology harness you?
When it comes to skin care needs and solutions to skin issues, the professional needs to find out what a client actually "wants versus needs." In our industry, the focus will be a skin care product or treatment that is needed to solve a problem that fulfills a want, such as glowing skin. But first, the difference between a want and a need should be understood.
Businesses are as individual as people. Each business location and owner has its own idiosyncrasies and methods - one spa's success can be another spa's failure. While there may not be a true top technique for spa marketing, common themes do come into play: research, relationship building, and taking advantage of free online tools.
When choosing which social media platform to utilize for your business, the goal is to pick the one that has the audience that best fits your company. After all, it takes a lot of time and resources to manage social media across all platforms. So it is wise to choose what best works for your business’ needs.
Discover How to Build Your Brand Authentically on Social Media: Practical Tips to Build a Loyal Community Using Visual ContentWritten by Valarie Hurst,L.E.
Do you struggle with finding ideas to post on social media? When you do post a status update, do you find it difficult to get viewers to engage? Do you scramble when trying to find visuals and instead post content in a hurry? Consistency seems to be a common thread within the spa industry on social media, but do not lose heart. It is key to building your spa’s brand.
What do you think of when you hear the word Groupon? Do you cringe or ask questions? One of my colleagues had a horrified look on her face as I began to explain Internet marketing to her. She exploded, "Groupon? Working for nothing for months?" "There are benefits," I said sheepishly. She groaned and the conversation hit an uncomfortable stop.
How do you market your business in your community? Having your own business/being an entrepreneur can be a very challenging job. You are required to sell yourself and your products, yet nobody really wants to be sold. So, how can you thrive with your business in your community? Here are some simple steps to help you reach your goals.
Spa and salon experts agree: Retailing is critical to success and expertise in this area is often the missing X-factor. Developing retailing skills consists of several parts, the most essential of these being the brands which are represented in your skin care center, salon, or spa. Does the skin care brand you are carrying truly represent your company’s vision at its most inspiring? Hopefully the answer is yes!
The spa industry is an ever-changing entity. The International Spa Association reports estimates that there were 160 million spa visits in 2012 and reports year-end revenue of $14 billion. A large percentage of that revenue is due to increasing interest in rejuvenating treatments. There are various rejuvenating treatment modalities available for use by aestheticians. In fact, there are so many options that aestheticians may have difficulty discerning which modalities are right for their spa. For example, aestheticians working in the office of a plastic surgeon or dermatologist are primarily concerned with healing tissue. Other aestheticians may focus on anti-aging. No matter the focus, it is critical that aestheticians and spa owners decide which modalities will be a good fit before investing in expensive equipment.
Who is your target market? Moms and daughters? Business workers on a lunch break? Athletic club members? Everyone in your community? Think broadly about your market. How can you expand it and keep current clients coming back? Education. Regardless of whether you are treating men, women, teenagers or seniors, when you educate, you earn your customer’s loyalty and bottom lines are boosted. A loyal clientele offsets the high costs of constantly acquiring new clients. This will help you salon or spa to be profitable, to make real differences, and to avoid being a one-time experience.
Successfully running and operating a small business in today’s dynamic world of beauty brands and outlets is no simple feat. Salon owners are tasked with doing it all. Running the day-to-day operations, dealing with staffing issues like turnover, marketing the business, and staying ahead of the latest technologies/techniques to keep your customers looking and feeling their best can be hectic.
As a successful salon owner and product manufacturer who has experienced my fair share of ups and downs through consistent fast paced growth, I have learned a lot along the way that might help others navigate the choppy waters ahead on the road to success. My hope is that these tips will help fuel and energize growth for some small business owners, while helping others sustain the success they have already achieved.
Marketing is a term that is thrown around all the time in seminars, lectures, trade magazines, and online advertisements. We all know we need it; we all know it works, but what does it really consist of and how does it differ from advertising? I like to think of “marketing” as a verb or action and “advertising” as a noun with no action. When you place an advertisement, you send off your beautiful image and then sit and wait for a response from clients, hoping they will be banging down the door. In marketing, you go out, engage with your clients, create a relationship, and make them want to come in and buy your product or service. To put it simply, marketing is a lot of work and action, but the results can be astounding and you will reap the rewards long after an advertisement is thrown into the garbage or used as birdcage lining!
When it comes to buying products, think strategically. I bring a new product onboard when I find a hole in my arsenal or when I need particular ingredients to deliver the results for which my clients are looking. My choices are often driven by client or technician request. It is important to maintain a product inventory that works synergistically. Start with an organized strategy, so that when bringing on new products a surplus of unnecessary items is not created. I often find that aestheticians purchase on impulse, or based on their own tastes, rather than on a coherent buying strategy for their spa. I once made the mistake of buying a line of bath and body care items because it had a beautiful look and feel.
Use the Four Basics in New Ways to Build a Powerhouse Bottom Line. It is a brand new year – the perfect time to re-energize your skin care business for bigger return and a deeper bond with your clientele.
It is time to take stock, focusing on these four essential steps:
1. Retain Current Clients – it is the foundation.
2. Gain New Clients – it is the future.
3. Increase Retail – make sure that your team knows how to sell.
4. Increase Service Sales – even though you think clients are not booking like they used to!
Marketing has changed... big time! If you are still marketing the same way you did a decade ago, it is time to launch yourself into the modern-day marketing zone. In fact, it is a definite must in order to stay competitive. While traditional phone book listings and newspaper advertisements are not obsolete, there are new ways to target consumers that have changed the way companies spend their marketing dollars. Consequently, thriving salons and spas have taken note of the multitude of advances that have been made available to better reach their clients – and consumers are not only being reached by these multi-dimensional marketing efforts, they are responding to them.
The quickest way to build a successful business is through retention and referral. “It costs six to seven times more to acquire a new customer than to retain an existing one.” – Bain & Company. Marketing efforts can be accomplished through post-cards, social media, public events, e-mail blasts, et cetera. However, there is a cost associated with all of these methods that ultimately affects a business’ bottom-line. The most profitable business models follow “The Customer is Always Right” rule. Nordstrom, a high end department store, is a great example of this; they are known for their exceptional customer service. Their customers feel confident that the accommodating staff at Nordstrom will be happy to exchange or return any product that does not meet their expectations. This philosophy sets them apart from other retailers, thereby increasing their consumer retention.
This article will outline quality ingredients and step-by-step applications as stand alone treatments and as add-on services. You will learn how to bring more depth into your menu offering while bringing a greater impact to your client’s well-being. When you consider adding a new product into your treatment or adding a new service to the menu, a few steps are needed in order to increase your potential of success. First, make sure that there is a strong scientific tie to how the products are developed and secondly that you have a basic understanding of the product so that you can adequately answer questions your clients may have.
The spa business is constantly growing and changing, and has thankfully been able to flourish despite the economic times. It can be difficult to keep your spa profitable regardless of size however, and in order to remain successful you need to offer clients a menu of treatments and services that will enrich their lives and have them coming back for more.
The type of menu you implement in your spa is going to be based on factors such as personal preference, training background, your financial capital, the space available, and what your market research tells you your area needs. I call this finding the need and filling the niche.
Retail is an important part of the spa business, and one of its components is makeup sales. When you design a retail space, you have to keep in mind that there are different types of retail products, and each category must be located, placed and presented in a manner related to its category to support and stimulate sales. Some retail products are more of a destination buy, meaning clients come to your spa because they want to buy the product. Other retail products are more of a circumstance buy, meaning the client may as well buy it here while she is onsite. Then, there is the impulse buy, meaning the client does not really need it, did not think of it, but sees it and wants it NOW.
The very interesting thing about makeup is that it is a retail type of product that is a destination-, circumstance- and impulse-based buy.
Makeup should be included into every service the spa has to offer. The key to marketing makeup is to make sure that these services are included on the spa’s service menu. This provides the customer with an expectation for the service and the feeling that they are getting more for their money. A lot of spa owners make the mistake of not including these services on their menu. Once the aesthetician offers an additional service to the customer, they often times turn it down or show a lack of interest. To avoid this mistake, spa owners need to make sure that makeup services are not offered as an option but are included as part of the service. This idea can be achieved through many different, innovative ways.
The teen market is a true niche market with huge potential. Teen services are not something you just add to your menu. They are the population of the future. If you really want to go after this marketplace, which is ever-growing and surging, you have to dedicate yourself to the Internet, social media and a culture engaged in real time that constantly changes. You need to be plugged in at all times, all the while building long-term relationships. Marketing to the teenager is all encompassing and takes thinking about a realistic approach to a very trendy and competitive marketplace.
Every business comes with its challenges. Owning a spa or salon is no different. Your selection of staff, policies and services offered all impact your clientele and reputation. However, there are important decisions that affect all of these and more. The products you choose to use in the treatment room and offer for retail purchase will shape your business, as well as influence your bottom line. Owners and spa directors need to consider several factors when selecting products, while keeping in mind that the skin care lines they use are also a representation of their business' brand.
Whether you work with a company or for yourself, it is important to understand the value of you as the professional. Your client looks to you for advice, suggestions and result-oriented treatments. I think first and foremost you should ask yourself if you truly enjoy servicing others and providing solutions to their unwanted body hair and skin concerns. Passion is something that is lived! It reveals itself through your eyes, your smile and your energy. Here are the tools that I feel you will need to fully impact your suggestions.
The adage "what's in a name" has often been debated. When it comes to products an inventive, catchy name that sums up what your product is and what it offers is critical. After all, the name will be the first things consumers see on a shelf, a website, or marketing materials. A well thought out name may even make it easier for search engines to find your product and bring it up in the first few pages of Google or Yahoo!. An example of a name that says it all: Tummy Tuck Jeans.
Now is the perfect time to promote romantic salon and spa retreats. Create promotions and salon service menu packages that will make it fun for friends and couples to visit your skin care clinic or day spa! Clients won't know that you offer special service packages for couples unless you actively promote them in your skin care center or spa service menus. Get ready to take advantage of the annualized special events, holidays, and seasons, while offering exciting new spa gift packages. Birthdays, anniversaries, Valentine's Day, Mother's Day, Father's Day, bridal season, and year-end holidays are terrific for couples promotions.
Selling retail is an essential part of a well run spa. This is true not only because the additional revenue is so crucial to a spa's bottom line, but also because prescriptive hom care is the necessary second step to the professional care given to a client in the spa. While mastering the retail sale can be difficult from a team or individual perspective, there are methods for making your spa's retail routine hum.
Direct mail has become one of the most effective strategies to market your aesthetic business. Whether your skin care center, dermatology clinic, day spa, or medical spa is known for signature facial treatments, specialized massage therapies, or day of beauty packages, there will always be some new service that you should promote to build your skin care business.
Many aestheticians wish that some of their specialized spa, wellness, and beauty care services were not the best kept secrets in town. Whether you operate independently or you own a large skin care facility, direct mail will help to draw attention to your business, while effectively promoting what you privately do behind closed doors.
It is time to become market driven with a series of exciting new client retention marketing strategies. We all know that one of the two best ways to build your business is by bringing in and keeping new clients. The other basic strategy for skin care clinics, salons, day spas, laser treatment centers, and medical spas is to build new business through your regular clients by selling them more services and products as well as to get them to refer their friends, co-workers, and family to you. With that said, it is time to explore how to sharpen your pencil on both ends to facilitate a new marketing plan that will take advantage of all opportunities.
If you want clients to follow you to the end of the earth and back, you better be the biggest expert on the block. Yes, great hands (touch therapy) do matter, as does your relationship and other such things, but the end all/be all deciding factor in them coming back for more will be the respect and awe you inspire with your results driven, customized system of skin care for each client. And by far the largest component of that is the clients at home skin care program. Don’t you agree?
It is time to refresh your retail environment and take sales to a whole new level. You can transform your retail department to look like the pros with strategic changes that ultimately impact how people browse, shop, and buy. For increased revenues and improved sales implement these interior design techniques for today’s skin care clinic or spa.
Communicate your brand. Upscale, urban, organic, value-priced… your retail interior should be a direct reflection of the image you want to communicate. High-end products should be merchandised minimally like fine jewelry in displays that complement the product. Organic products should be surrounded by metal and wood.
Strategic and creative promotions are a powerful way to stimulate business flow and revenues, as well as being an effective means of creating a loyal clientele. But think about this: What are your clients interested in? How can your promotions attract new clients? How often should you offer promotions? What types of promotions will set your business apart from the competition? You must create a strategic plan in order for you promotions to be successful and provide you with a return on investment (ROI).
Most of us know the advantages of selling retail products well, so for the sake of argument let us look at the dark side of not selling our clients their home care products. In other words, what are the consequences of our failure to play the role of expert in recommending products for the day-to-day maintenance of our clients skin?
First, clients will end up buying department store products, drugstore, or infomercial brands. Not only will these products typically under-perform, they will generally not be suited to our client’s skin type or needs, and thus, will fail to provide proper results. Our client will become frustrated.
Hopefully when you decided to become an aesthetician, your main deciding factor was your passion; Passion to help others look and feel better. It’s no secret that having passion for what you do is a major factor in an overall success formula. And, when you combine passion with skills, your chances for success are even greater, but your formula remains incomplete.
You need a solid investment program - an investment into the future of your career path, and what better than continuing education and advanced education. In the ever changing face of beauty products and beauty systems, it’s become even more crucial today for aestheticians to stay on top of their game.
E-newsletters are one of the best ways to openly communicate with your clients and build repeat business. You can offer advice, highlight special offers, and reveal new services you bring to your spa. E-newsletters encourage vital marketing when they are forwarded by readers. They establish your credibility in the marketplace, and put you ahead of the competition. Most importantly, an informative, insightful newsletter will keep your spa at the top of your clients' minds and make them want to come back again and again. But there's more to it than sending out a monthly e-mail.
If I had to identify one large knowledge gap in the skin care industry, I think it’s in the area of retail sales. Yes, there is a wealth of product knowledge training available, but very little in the way of customer psychology and sales technique. Knowing what to recommend is not the same as knowing how to sell.
Aestheticians are in a tough bind because of this shortfall. On the one hand, it’s probable that no one has ever taught you how to sell products, and yet on the other hand there is an expectation that you’re supposed sell a lot—whatever that is.
It’s always been your dream and you know now is the right time to make it happen. You have researched and planned and prepared and at this point there is only one thing standing between you and the doors of your spa – money. You envision a waiting list of clients, a talented and attentive staff, and because of your success you will be profitable early on and be able to pay back your loans early! You are sure that because your business and marketing plans are so well designed, you will have multiple lenders ready to offer you the money you need to launch your spa into business.
One of the greatest perplexities to any spa owner is advertising. When to do it? Where? What makes sense? How much should I budget? We all understand the business of skin and body care, but getting our spa-oriented mind into marketing mode takes a real push. Marketing and advertising is a vast field of possibilities-both good and bad.
Every business needs to market itself, to get the word out about the availability, uniqueness, and quality of its goods and services. In the increasingly competitive day spa industry it's important to make potential customers aware of a company's distinctive qualities.
We’re both professional skin therapists with an entrepreneurial spirit, and we both teach classes with a similar point of view. We draw upon our own experiences as therapists, and as business owners—we’ve seen it all, done it all, and can save all of you the frustration of many common mistakes!
1- BE READY. While everyone is entitled to a personal life, quality time with friends and family, “sacred space”, and all of that sort of thing, you can’t expect much of this when you are launching a new business.