News

  • Plan a Spa Party with Pennies

    The retail landscape has changed over the years, with e-commerce becoming the number one shopping venue. Retailers need to evolve their strategies to entice shoppers to visit our businesses to purchase rather than in the comfort of their own home.

    Physical stores are still most customers’ preferred shopping method, as online shopping cannot replace the personal experience stores allow. While in store, clients can touch, feel, smell and test products, immersing themselves in a multi-sensory experience while receiving live expert advice. Fortunately, this cannot be accomplished while shopping from your couch. Nowadays, the fastest, most cost-effective way to elevate the in-store experience and attract new clients is by hosting in-store events.

    Provide an Educational Experience

    Your event shouldn’t just be about selling products, but rather to provide a unique experience that differentiates your store from the rest. Offer education and encourage client and professional skin therapist interaction by offering complimentary one-on-one skin care analysis. Your team of professional skin therapists will then have the opportunity to explain the benefits of your products and how they will target specific conditions for client results. Clients can play with their recommended products, ask application questions and receive professional tips from you to help maximize their results.

    Offer mini-treatments to allow guests to sample your services when maybe they wouldn’t otherwise. The therapist can discuss products throughout the entire treatment, explaining what they are using and encouraging home care, as well as solidify a future treatment booking.

    These interactions will provide your guests with professional advice and are the key to stimulating an emotional connection between the client, your team and the product. Clients who are educated and are able to try recommended products are more likely to purchase. In fact, an average retail transaction post service is 40% higher than a retail transaction without a service.

    Partner Up

    Chances are businesses in your local community wouldn’t mind driving business into their stores with some free advertising. Network with like-minded retailer neighboring businesses with a goody bag of samples and your business card. Tell them about your event, and encourage them to partner.

    Partner businesses could include: blow dry bars, fitness studios (yoga, Pilates, spin), clothing boutiques, bakeries, waxing salons, health food stores, massage studios and active wear boutiques. Local businesses can participate by donating bounce backs, or products to be included in your event gift bag or an item to raffle. Many restaurants are willing to provide food or beverages to be served during the event as a way to promote their business.

    Let them know you will include their logo on your invites and tag them on social media. Include a charity you feel passionate about and plan to pledge a percentage of your event’s revenue.

    Motivate your Team

    Hold team meetings to get everyone excited and communicate the in-store event details and retail and service booking goals. Assign the team with event tasks such as: door greeter, cash wrap, treatment services, gift bags, bartender, etc. Launch a contest for the team member with the highest sales of the event or most treatments booked.

    Create Buzz

    Get creative when designing invites. Be sure to include your partner’s logos and all that will be offered. Use words like “complimentary treatments,” “gifts with purchase,” and “door prizes and giveaways.” Charge a small ticket fee redeemable for product purchases to encourage product sales during your event. Events that require ticket purchase and RSVPs have a 60% higher show rate than events with no ticket charge or RSVP requirement. A small ticket charge redeemable for product purchases motivates clients to show up and redeem their retail credit which leads to 95% of attendees purchasing product. Utilize event hosting sites like Eventbrite, which manages RSVPs, payment and the guest list.

    Promote Your Event

    Social media is the most effective way to promote your event at no cost. Create buzz and increase ticket sales with a simple social media strategy. Come up with an event tag line that’s short and catchy, put a hashtag in front of it and use this on all social media channels leading up to your event. Add it to your event invite, signage and use it anytime you are promoting your event. Encourage your partners do to the same. This will expand your reach, create excitement and increase ticket sales.

    Set-up for Success

    Set-up and presentation is a vital part of holding a successful event. You may need to rearrange your store to fit all of your guests and allow for maximum service and retailing capacity. Set up a check-in area outside displaying an easel or step and repeat at your entrance. It is important that clients and passers-by know there is a special event happening.

    Gather your partners’ raffle items and a complimentary treatment gift card from your store and set them up by your entrance. Don’t forget entry cards, pens and a bowl or box of entry cards at this station. The purpose of this is to ensure you capture the email addresses of new customers and existing customers who attend the event. Pick raffle winners multiple times throughout the event to keep the excitement and energy high. This will ensure guests will stick around longer in hopes that they are one of the winners. Clearly display promotional items on a focal table to allure attendees to shop.

    Set up a food, drink and gift bag station. Pump up the music to create fun atmosphere and greet attendees with champagne. Take pictures of the event and post to social media, tagging your partners and attendees and utilizing your hashtag. Encourage attendees to do the same by rewarding the best photo using your hashtag with a prize.

    Follow-up

    Your event was a success. You made some new client connections and achieved your retail target. Events should do so much more than generate revenue; they should leave a lasting impression. Most importantly, they should connect with clients emotionally. This connection alone gives customers a reason to return. Solidify those new relationships and follow up. This is the most important part of holding a successful event. Send a handwritten thank you card to each attendee and include a bounce back to encourage them to return. This personal touch will stand out in their mind, and they will be more likely to become a repeat client. Share event pictures and videos of favorite moments across social media from your event, using your hashtag. Post onto your website to promote, build excitement and encourage guests to attend future events.

    This article was originally published in SkinInc.com.

  • SKINtuition: 5 Ways To Get People Buzzing About Your Biz

    Buzz or word-of-mouth marketing is best described as “people talking about you.” Has a friend recently recommended a new hip restaurant, a unique store, cool website or insist you watch a certain Netflix show? Has a business connection suggested a new money saving app? That’s buzz.

    Buzz can happen organically, and creating buzz for your business is not hard. It takes a bit of creativity, willingness to fail and above all confidence. Here are five simple ideas to push up the buzz o’ meter.

    1. Stand Out

    Do something that will get you noticed. Examples could include a new advanced treatment, big event or giving back to the community. If you do what every other spa does, you’re not worth talking about.

    2. Share Your Story

    Storytelling is gold. If your entered into skin care as a life-long dream after losing your job, getting divorced or finally getting your kids out of the nest, share this. Being honest and transparent is refreshing, and people love a real success story (especially the press), so don’t be afraid to share your truth or even your failures for that matter. It’s fascinating and people want to connect with and support small business.

    3. Look After Your Loyalists

    Loyal clients are the ones who will buzz about you to their friends and family in person and via social, so it’s in your best interest to treat them like royalty. It goes way beyond your treatments and services—you should have stellar customer service support, build exceptional relationships and go above and beyond expectations. Your top clients give you the majority of your business, it’s part of the 80/20 rule. So dial up how you acknowledge and reward them. The occasional “surprise and delight” unexpected note, gift or complimentary service goes down as a treat too.

    4. Be Your Own Ambassador of Buzz

    If you’re not ready to jump in and chat about your craft, then who else? Instead of focusing on what you do and how you do it, talk to people about why you do it. When you talk about the why, your authentic passion will come through; this is much more fascinating and galvanizing for someone to hear.

    Think of it as your own 30 second “elevator pitch” you need to be able to get this down and it is the cheapest and easiest most important form of buzz marketing. Share away at networking events, startup meetups, co-working spaces, industry get-together’s, backyard BBQs and even in the dog park.

    5. Dig Deep Into Social

    Research says that 63% of consumers who search for local businesses online are more likely to use businesses with information on social media sites. Facebook alone is now a mini website, and your social platforms are likely to be more up to date than your business website.

    When you consider that 93% of buying decisions are also influenced by social media, it is a no brainer. No social presence equals no visibility and no business. So post, Pin, engage, Tweet, Instagram, Snapchat away, but keep it professional, educational, positive, a bit quirky and fun if you want to convert those followers to service dollars.

    This article was originally published in SkinInc.com.

  • New Year, New Strategy—PR Tactics to Broaden Your Business Scope

    Lori MacGregor Considering adding PR to your marketing strategy this year? Consider this: PR, generally understood as securing third-party endorsements for your brand, is widely thought to be more influential (and less expensive) than advertising. That said, it’s called “earned media” for a reason—good PR takes effort and a dedication to building relationships with journalists, online influencers, and consumers over time. If you’re willing to put in the work, you can reap the benefits for years to come.

    Here are five ways to use PR to boost your business within the coming year.

    • Develop a press kit, a collection of assets that communicate the key message points and vision for your business. Press kits typically include a company backgrounder, service menu, location images, and a bio on the business owner or key staff. You might have printed copies to hand out, but most media prefer digital.

    • Connect with media influencers. Note local media outlets such as city magazines, newspapers, blogs, and TV news, and invite the appropriate contact in for a complimentary treatment—media will be better able to capture the spirit of your brand if they experience it first-hand. Reach out via email, briefly explaining what makes your business, staff, or menu unique. Then, roll out the (figurative) red carpet: confirm details the day before, give a full tour of the space, and ensure they are booked with your top-performing talent. Remember the old adage: you never get a second chance to make a first impression!

    • Provide unique content. Reporters cover news, so they’ll be motivated to cover a business that’s just opened or expanded, a seasonally-relevant skin treatment, expert tips that consumers can try at home, or local stories that benefit the community. Many publications plan weeks and months in advance, so be ready to preview your unique summer skin treatment in March. Be thoughtful about outreach; contact only with newsworthy topics, and never badger a writer with calls or emails. You want to build a relationship; be respectful and understand that if an idea doesn’t work, there may be another opportunity down the road.

    • Team up. There’s power in numbers. Partner with local businesses to create a neighborhood event, where guests receive exclusive deals, previews, or add-ons when they attend. Invite local business owners, customers, bloggers, and social media influencers, and encourage them to post photos on their social media channels, tagging your business. Social media is powerful media!

    • PR your PR! Amplify your accolades. Add press clips to your website, create display sheets for shelves, and highlight wins on social media. Always thank each journalist for coverage. Do it publically over Twitter, privately via email, or more personally with a handwritten note. You’re not obligated to send a gift, but complimentary product will keep your business top of mind as they plan their next story or segment.

    Adv. vs. PR

  • 4 Essential Tips to Reach Clients through Social Media Marketing

    Michelle SilvaTake a second to think about how your business is communicating on social media. Are you constantly pushing hard-sell messages to your followers? Are you overtly telling your customers in every post to book an appointment or to buy a service or product from you? If so, you could be guilty of turning off your followers.

    Social media marketing has evolved into an enormous tool for brands both large and small to engage with their customers online and reach new ones too. Like any type of marketing, your social media efforts should include the overarching objective of converting your followers into paying customers. However, it’s important to keep in mind that people don’t want to see a news feed full of sales pitches. In the social space, if you can consistently create content that taps into your target audience’s interests, you’ll stand a better chance of keeping your followers and growing your fan base.

    Social Media Here are a few key things to keep top-of-mind when crafting content for social pages:

    Provide value to your customers.

    Highlight your expertise and position your business as an expert in your industry by curating content that provides value to your followers. People love to learn online and discover new tips—especially about skin care! Share your knowledge by creating content that features tips, solutions and guides on how to care for skin or treat a specific concern. If you’re consistently creating valuable content, your followers might share your content with their friends, getting your business page in front of new eyes. This will help you keep the attention of your existing followers and help you grow your audience.

    TIP: For every question, there’s a piece of content! What are the most common questions your clients ask you? Keep a running list and turn each one into a post!

    Be creative with what you’re promoting.

    So, you just added a new service to your menu and you need to get the word out. Try thinking of a creative way to entice people to try it out, but without the hard-sell lingo.  For example, create an infographic that highlights the top 3 benefits of the service.

    Quality over quantity.

    Don’t just post for the sake of posting. Always ask yourself if it will benefit your audience? Will it inspire them? Will it provide value? If so, post away!

    Be conversational.

    Don’t be afraid to be human! Think of social media as a conversation between you and your customers and an opportunity to build relationships. While it’s important to still be professional and practice good customer service, there’s no need to be overly formal. When writing for social media, keep your copy conversational, concise, and easy to understand.

  • Branding for an Experience

    As we all move through our day-to-day lives we often do not realize the subtle trail of familiarity. From the Starbucks mug we pour our coffee into, to the Apple logo gracing the back of our beloved mobile phone, or even the golden arches of McDonald’s lining the streets of our commute. All of these recognizable shapes and colors may seem like the backdrop to our hectic days but they are in fact part of a much larger picture – these images are part of a brand. They establish what the brand is without words or sounds, and they instigate memories and curiosity. Branding is essential in any business because it allows us to tap into something that is unique to each person, and the feeling that is left from the experience can be hard to forget.

    When clients comes in for a treatment they have a certain expectations. It is safe to say that anyone walking through a salon or spa door is looking for results and enjoyment, and the last thing we want to do as a business owner is pour our business model down our customers’ throats! This is where branding comes into play. From the moment your clients walk through the front door, you want them to feel the experience your business offers. Creating visually appealing merchandising on shelves, counter spaces, and focus tables is a great place to start. Clutter-free, easy to shop spaces make exploring products enjoyable, helping to set the tone for your clients and the image you’d like your business to project. And it shouldn’t stop there! You can spread that experience throughout the space, and a clever way to achieve this is to feature pieces tastefully in the treatment room such as a blanket or client wrap.

    The most powerful marketing tool you can use is your brand, and the key as you drive your business – and the products that support your business – is to make your branding distinct. The treatment room is an amazing place to help mold your image, and linking the pleasurable experience of the treatments you offer to your brand is a unique and creative way to represent your business’ overall model!

  • No More Fluff and Puff

    Annet KingAs a skin therapist, massage therapist, and educator, I am often told it’s clear I love what I do. It always makes me smile because what I do – and why I do it – is who I am. There’s nothing I love more than solving skin problems, addressing business challenges and helping people. I know you can relate – from inspecting suspicious moles on family members, massaging your colleague’s sore shoulders or mapping skin at social gatherings, it’s just what we do! But the actuality of our work stretches far beyond providing skin services, waxing brows and prescribing peptides.

    We are in the business of touch, and we are no stranger to the endless list of positive health benefits our work can provide. From lowering the stress hormone cortisol, to increasing the feel good hormone oxytocin, to boosting immune function and reducing pain and anxiety, clinical proof is widely available that argues both the power of touch and the negative impact of touch deprivation.

    This has led to massage, spa and alternative therapies (like aromatherapy, acupressure, acupuncture, reflexology and hydrotherapy) finally getting the serious recognition they deserve, so much so that the number of hospitals around the world now offering complimentary alternative medicine (CAM) has tripled over the past few years. This movement is largely due to the hard medical evidence now available for alternative therapies and the fact that healthcare costs can be radically reduced when illness is prevented! And let’s not leave out the patient demand – plain and simple, many people are seeking alternative therapies.

    Seventy one percent of people would be more likely to visit spas if they knew that scientific studies showed measurable results – are you marketing your services in the right way? Or are you still using words like “luxurious,” “pampering” or “well deserved treat?” It might be time to renovate your menu and messaging, update your space and climb on board the health train – leaving the beauty bus behind!

    Discover more on this subject here:
    http://www.spaevidence.com/spaevidence
    http://www6.miami.edu/touch-research