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Marketing: A Top 10 List

By: Carol and Rob Trow
Posted: December 31, 2009, from the January 2010 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.

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Remember, the devil is in the details and in the execution. Where practical and affordable, consider the services of a marketing professional to help you achieve your goals. But never forget, no one knows your business as well as you do, so don’t be bullied into any activity that doesn’t feel right. It’s your business, your money and your future—you need to do what you think is right.

1. Focus on your most profitable clients. Review your current client list, and determine those clients who are most valuable to you. You may be surprised to learn that a small percentage of them actually contribute the majority of your profits. Ask those premier clients why they use your services and purchase your products, as they may be better able to articulate points that can play a major role in shaping your marketing initiatives. The more you know about your current clients, the more you will learn about your spa and about what actually works.

2. Target your first marketing dollars to current clients. Market to your existing customers. Offer them programs such as a free product with a service or a procedure you want to introduce or expand. Add a free upgrade to a specific service as a special that changes monthly. Create a frequent visitor program where, when a clients reach a specific number of services, they can receive a free service or a significant discount. Offer services in a series, with the last one free if the client pays in advance. These kinds of initiatives will help keep your regular clients coming in.

3. Market through education. Conduct periodic educational seminars for current and prospective clients. Bring in speakers, involve your vendors, and offer raffle prizes and welcome gifts. And if you find your vendor does not act as a strategic partner, switch vendors.

Advertise educational events to your clients, in local newspapers, on the radio and with zip code-specific direct mailings. You can often trade advertising with the media for free services they can give away to their clients, listeners or employees. Bartering is a widely accepted business practice.