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Social Media Marketing for Increased Traffic and Profits

By Maritza Rodriguez-Aouanough and Dawn MacLellan
Posted: April 27, 2012, from the May 2012 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.

Aside from word-of-mouth referrals, direct marketing and e-marketing within your spa can prove to be two of the most efficient and cost-effective methods of advertising. Current clients and your e-mail database are direct channels to a captive audience, and can be used to promote new and innovative treatments or services, special offers, events and more. Existing clients have already established a connection with your spa team and a trust has been built. Creative and strategic in-spa marketing can be the key to increasing your skin care facility’s volume per ticket and frequency of client visits.

Social media—Facebook. This popular networking site allows users to stay in touch and join networks organized by city, workplace, school, region or common interests. Following are ways Facebook can be used in your spa.

  • Present a tablet computer in the reception area to encourage clients to “like” your page, which will expose your reach to their entire friend list. As an incentive, vouchers may be offered on the site that your clients may utilize upon liking your page.
  • Be sure to include an educational post at least once per day. This can be as simple as sharing an important skin care tip or asking a specific wellness question. The goal is to open the lines of communication and increase your fans.
  • Assign a trusted team member the responsibility of checking your account and answering any questions posted. A lack of timely replies will quickly deteriorate your fan list and date your postings.
  • Keep it fresh! Add a virtual tour of the spa, team photos, event photos, client testimonials and more.
  • Use Facebook to post value-driven offers, but be sure to always include either the fact that it is a limited-time offer, while supplies last or include an actual expiration date. Remember that although you can share offers on Facebook, this should not become a heavy-handed sales channel.

Social media—Twitter. This free social networking site allows you to post short messages known as tweets to your fans. Utilize Twitter to update your clients about the latest happenings in your facility.

  • If you are just getting started with social media, you can opt to synchronize your Twitter account to Facebook, so each time you post to Facebook, the same posting will also appear on Twitter.
  • Twitter can be used to provide quick updates on important offers, charity-driven events and programs.
  • Use Twitter for fun tidbits, trivia, questions and non spa-related happenings, such as tweets about celebrity awards, fashion, holidays, seasonal hot picks and more.
  • Twitter defines the hashtag as the # symbol. It is used to mark keywords or topics in a tweet. It was created organically by Twitter users as a way to categorize messages. People use the hashtag symbol # before relevant keywords in their tweets to categorize those tweets to show more easily in Twitter search.
  • If you tweet with a hashtag on a public account, anyone who does a search for that hashtag may find your tweet. Twitter recommends that you do not use more than three hashtags per tweet and that you use hashtags only on tweets relevant to the topic. You can also include links to interesting online content related to your tweet so that your followers can read more if they are interested. For example, if your Austin, Texas, spa is having a sale, try including #AustinSpaSale in your tweet.

Other social media networking sites can be used, such as LinkedIn, MySpace and Tagged, but if you start with Facebook and Twitter, you will place your spa on the community’s radar and rapidly experience the benefits of these great marketing channels.

Maritza Rodriguez-Aouanough has worked directly in the capacity of image and marketing consultancy with some of the most renowned professional skin care brands on the market. She is currently the global vice president of marketing & communications for Pevonia International and its related brands.