1) Increase your focus on cyber marketing.
The popularity of social media and the advancement in mobile and tablet technology means young people are rarely reading print media or even watching TV these days. “Social media is the cornerstone of our marketing strategy,” confirms Dtox co-owner King. “We post weekly updates (on Facebook, Twitter and Yelp) about skin care, events, specials and industry news—information that’s interesting and useful to our young clients.”
The spa also sends out email promotions to all guests (collect those email addresses with every appointment!), highlighting different treatments and packages each month, as a way to expose clients to the variety this day spa has to offer.
First step: Pimp your website. Do not underestimate the importance of a clean, modern website that is easy to navigate. If you’re not online, you might as well be invisible to these potential guests. Your site should offer online booking, clear descriptions of services, prices, all current promotions and your spa policies. Be sure to link your Facebook and Twitter pages to your site.
In fact, get to know Facebook and Twitter intimately. Building followers is just the beginning. Keeping your accounts active and informative is equally important. “Wednesday is our social media posting day,” King says. “We have one person in charge of posting but the entire company is involved in what we say. We sometimes have a contest for the best post.”
Enabling your clients to get involved in your social media allows them to become a part of your spa community. Offer places for feedback, respond quickly to re-Tweets and Facebook postings, and hold contests on your social media pages. “Our followers share their wonderful experiences at the spa and their at-home tricks and tips with our products,” says Bliss’ Temner. “Twitter and Facebook are also great customer service tools; we can help our clients immediately and give them that one-on-one assistance.”
2) Get more social.
Making your spa a social destination is key to appealing to the youth market. “This demographic does everything in groups,” Trent says. “You sell one, you sell them all.”
So get them mingling. Dtox Day Spa cites its monthly happy hour as the single most important event for bringing in new clients. Oasis Day Spa in Westchester, New York, takes advantage of spring and summer months to throw rooftop parties to introduce new clients to the spa, and to treat existing ones to a fun event. ESSpa focuses on bring-a-friend-for-free promotions to attract new guests and offers existing clients a price break. “The word-of-mouth promotion is invaluable,” Kerschbaumer says.
Be conscious of back-to-school season, semester breaks and holidays, when many young people come home to visit with families and may be looking for something to do with Mom—or somewhere to go to escape. “Any occasion can be an occasion for a profitable party,” Trent says. (See “Party Menu.")