The spa industry has long been known as an oasis for the female client. Everything from design concepts to ingredient choices to aromatic experiences has been created to entice the working mother, female entrepreneur, and trendy boss babe to schedule an appointment to escape their busy lives. Those ways have become a practice of the past, with inclusion and diversity being the top draw to businesses across every genre, including the spa industry. Today’s male client is more than the occasional husband, boyfriend, or gay best friend.
Over the past 10 years we have seen a dramatic increase in spa businesses finding subtle, yet effective, ways to include men in their marketing. We have also seen complete businesses dedicated to solely servicing the male clientele. Are you looking at this exciting opportunity as a fleeting moment or trend? Do you consider opening your books to the male population and find yourself overwhelmed with concern, racing thoughts, and ultimately deciding to leave that money up for the taking?
In today’s market, we have to be willing to service our whole community. If you are a waxing expert, offering manscaping is a no brainer. Men will most definitely help increase your business revenue and fill those empty appointment slots. Facial specialists can create a menu removing targeted services and open up more customized services that exclude gender specific themes. For those that offer advanced modalities in their treatment room, this is the perfect time to show men they can get fast service with no downtime and put their best face forward for upcoming executive meetings or that hot date next Saturday.
Before updating your menu and redesigning your business, there are some important items skin care professionals must consider to create a business that is diverse in marketing and inviting to all members of the community.
OFFER CUSTOMIZED CONSULTATIONS AND TREATMENTS
Several trend setting businesses have used terms and branding catered to a certain demographic, but we want to ensure we are not using terms that may cause discrimination claims or negative emotional experiences before the client ever meets you. The best practice is focusing the client conversation by offering customized consultations and treatments that are capped by time limits instead of products or modalities. Create promotions in your marketing that celebrate differences and generate new community allies. One great way to meet new markets is partnering with charitable organizations that show your business is an ally to that community.
KEEP THE APPOINTMENT PROFESSIONAL
Keep the appointment professional just like you would with any other client. The number one complaint we see across every social media channel about including men in our business is the stories of tragedy. While these are real life happenings that take place in businesses around the world, we have to remember that these are less common than we might be led to believe. Have you ever posted about getting a cold and noticed how 50 others posted they have a cold, too? The same practice applies in this scenario and we want you to share your positive stories, too. There are businesses catering to the male clientele and you have an opportunity to alter the trajectory of your success by simply extending the invitation.
ADDRESS FACIAL HAIR
The next topic often discussed when conversing about male specific services is how to address facial hair. Men want the same results as any other client. Keep the conversations focused to ingredient and modality features and benefits. Ask the client what their personal goal is and provide that solution. When it comes time for the treatment, spend a little extra time massaging products, masks, and serums into the beard, working in the direction of the hair growth. The skin needs to be treated and protected wholly. For men with short stubble, use downward strokes wiggling back and forth, much like when applying mascara. The gentle rocking motion will assist products in penetrating, while moving in the direction of hair growth will ensure a relaxing experience.
USE VERBIAGE TO ENHANCE MESSAGING
Lastly, use your verbiage to enhance messaging. Consumers, male and female, have become way more invested in researching trends, ingredients, and protocols. Use professional language that is styled to express your brand but defines exactly what you are offering. Replacing terms like antiaging, beauty, and rejuvenation with terms like deep pore cleanse, gentle exfoliant, and hydration will attract more clients of either gender.
Creating a powerful business and demonstrating your expert skills means being flexible to learning new skills, overcoming client challenges, and providing superior solutions every chance you get. As men continue to find new service providers and we work together as an industry to provide more solutions, I look forward to seeing how you creatively create a business focused on inclusion and building your community.
Richard Merrill is an award-winning beauty industry expert of over 15 years specializing in salon and spa sales and marketing. Licensed aesthetician, makeup artist, educator, and consultant, his experience in the industry is vast, making him a great resource for assisting to build your business. For more information, visit richardmerrillconsulting.com.