Are you debating a shift in your spa business to become organic? Perhaps you’re hoping to stand out in a busy, and rather noisy, beauty industry or maybe this choice is in alignment with your company vision (or promise) of supporting guests in their pursuit of clean living.
Both are valid and honourable reasons for committing to the organic spa concept and this shift of business focus has the potential to be very lucrative! To succeed in offering organic treatments and products that will build a stronger clientele, your spa must have a detailed business strategy to convey your new direction. Otherwise, guests who are looking for organic (and they are looking!) may book with you once, but if you don’t have a well thought out plan that meets their needs, the consumer will continue their search for another spa that is communicating and executing this organic focus in a more sophisticated manner. Because launching an organic spa is an expensive and time-consuming change, I have four essential steps you need to consider in order to be on track for strong, sustainable spa sales:
1. Be exceptionally clear about your ideal client
This one of the first exercises I do with my private clients. Your business strategy begins with knowing whom you are trying to attract. A vague ideal client profile will give unpredictable sales results. If you choose to focus on an organic concept in your spa, you need to be speaking to prospective clients who value clean living, and see organic skin care and makeup as an essential part of their personal grooming. When you know the psychographics, the consumer behaviour, of this ideal client, you have a much better idea about where to find them “hanging out” on social media and in your community and you will spend less time and money marketing to the people who are already open to your offer.
2. Have a clear organic focus in your marketing
Now that you have a better idea about which group of consumers to shift your advertising to, the next step in your spa business strategy is to keep your marketing message crystal clear. Be consistent with your organic message on social media platforms, newsletters, and in-spa marketing by using images and words that convey nature, freshness and wholesomeness. Enlist the help of your organic product line’s marketing department. They often have copy you can use in your own content.
3. The organic spa experience must be consistent
Pretend you are a guest connecting with your spa for the first time. Does your spa experience convey your organic message from the moment they visit your website, as they walk in the door, throughout the treatment and up until to the time they leave the spa? Truly, it is the details in your business that add up to an exceptional guest experience; one that says, “We’re committed to our beliefs.” Gain perspective by looking at all five senses; sight, sound, taste, smell, and hearing. If one of those senses is out of alignment with your organic concept, (for example, a strong odour of nail polish) you could be inadvertently derailing your spa’s focus, and its success. What about the other service protocols? Are they all in alignment with your concept? Perhaps you offer a treatment that uses a less-than-organic ingredient deck. It is critical you stay focused, and it may be time to re-evaluate which treatments should stay, go or be adjusted to fit with your purpose.
4. Hire a team with the same values
What we don’t understand or value, we dismiss. This goes for your team as well! Hiring staff that already hold organic living as an important lifestyle choice will immediately improve your company culture and as a result, your business outcomes. When everyone working is toward a common business goal, which is in alignment with his or her personal values, it is a win-win for personal career satisfaction and generating revenues. Going organic is not as simple as, “Let’s bring in an organic skin care line to attract more business.” It is the culmination of focused and strategic actions that will allow your organic spa concept be a client attractor and generate strong, sustainable sales.
Kirsten Foss is an esthetician, spa owner and business coach who works with salons and spas. She is also the Director of Marketing & Communication for the Estheticians & Spa Professionals Association BC and lives in Victoria, BC.