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Getting Carded

By: Elizabeth Myron
Posted: June 23, 2008, from the May 2006 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.

Recently, my niece from Australia came to visit me, and she wanted to experience some spa services during her holiday. She enjoyed a half-day of blissful treatments and, after her luxurious encounter, I asked her if the spa had completed a client consultation or attempted to sell her any retail products. Much to my disappointment, her answer was no.

As a spa owner or esthetician, you may read this and think that because my niece is from overseas, there would be a slim chance of her revisiting the establishment, and therefore there would have been no need for the spa to obtain her client details. In fact, much to my surprise, after surveying service providers in the spa industry, I found that many are lax about getting client information because they believe that it is too time-consuming. Some said that they occasionally complete a consultation card if the service potentially could result in litigation, or in order to satisfy their insurance requirements. Yet, a client consultation can be so much more, once a full understanding of its use has been established. This article addresses how you, the skin care professional, can utilize this extremely successful, inexpensive marketing tool to maximize your profit potential.

Good business practice

When completing a consultation, you can determine your client’s needs by asking all the right questions, listening carefully and thoroughly documenting their responses. This will lead to repeat business, not to mention multiple retail sales. Remember that the client is coming to you, the expert, for answers—so consult and provide them. Think about when you are ill and need to visit a medical professional. When checking in, you complete all the necessary paperwork and update your personal information. This is reviewed by the physician before you are examined. Then an assessment is performed, and treatment or medications are recommended. This is good business practice and one that the spa industry should adopt—but you must know how to create a client consultation card.

Make sure that your consultation card is double-sided. The front should list the necessary questions related to the treatment that the client is experiencing. Include a disclaimer or a release at the bottom of the front side for the client to sign and date. The back should contain comments and notations made by the technician providing the service and should include retail product suggestions. (See Waxing Consultation Card.)

Pertinent information

Following, you will find an array of topics that will assist you in identifying the most pertinent pieces of information you must obtain in order to create and customize your own client consultation cards.