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Take the Vertical Leap

By: Alex Ignon
Posted: July 1, 2013, from the July 2013 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.
Vertical leap

The time has come—it is safe to declare the skin care industry as a whole has officially survived the Great Recession. Additionally, consumer confidence is coming back and so too may your bottom line; but is your business on par with your pre-recession status? For many, rebuilding your business continues to be an uphill battle. Whatever your current situation, taking the vertical leap will help attract and retain new clients.

This method involves vertically expanding within your specific client base to market your facility, servicing their exact needs and making your business the go-to establishment. Following are a few suggested client bases to consider and tools to help you get started.

Bridal

Many businesses limit their bridal packages to one or two treatments right before the wedding. This is a huge missed opportunity. For most brides-to-be, planning a wedding is a tremendously stressful experience and stress can wreak havoc on skin health. Promote skin health by establishing a regimen your skin care facility can help them follow throughout their wedding journey. This is client retention at its best.

Consider fostering strategic partnerships with places brides-to-be visit while planning a wedding, including bridal boutiques, local bridal expos and event planning services. Search Google and Yelp; you’ll come across plenty of businesses to approach. Offer your new strategic partners free or discounted services for their referrals, or simply agree to refer your clients to their business, as well. It’s a win-win!

Teen acne

Acne tends to be one of adolescents’ biggest concerns. You may not have considered their client potential because they generally lack a disposable income to spend at your facility; however, the people financially supporting teens—the parents—may. Additionally, often parents are driving their children to their skin care appointments and coming inside to pay the bill, which presents you with an opportunity to expand your clientele once again.

Establish a point of contact with teens and their parents through school events, and approach a school administrator about possibly hosting a skin health event. For this endeavor to be successful, incorporate effective treatments that specifically address acne. If you provide noticeable results quickly, teens will get on a regimen, parents will frequent your establishment and news of your effective skin care treatments will spread like wildfire.

Nonprofit organizations

You may already serve several clients who belong to nonprofit organizations, but why not open your facility to a group of women who share a common interest by offering skin care events they can attend together? Perform another online search and you will find a laundry list of women’s organizations. Join or volunteer, and offer to hold a skin care health event. Provide a group discounted rate and set aside a special one-day gathering each month at your facility.

The three R’s

Before embarking on this endeavor, be sure to incorporate the three R’s.

  1. Research. Research the most promising venture in your area and decide which target group you are most comfortable approaching.
  2. Readiness. Readiness is the key to success. Be sure that your facility can accommodate large groups, that your staff is educated and involved, and that you have the treatments needed to service them.
  3. Repeat. Repeat your campaign even if it is not a home run right off the bat. Analyze your successful and less successful outcomes, and refine your approach before moving on.

These client possibilities are just the tip of the iceberg; there are many others out there, ranging from active seniors, to pre- and post-natal women. Take the opportunity to expand your clientele and skin care facility to meet and surpass your pre-recession standing.

Alex+IgnonAlex Ignon is the director of marketing at Edge Systems, manufacturer of the HydraFacialMD system. With more than 17 years of marketing and media experience, Ignon has won numerous awards, including the CTAM Mark Award for best marketing plan. He can be contacted at aignon@edgeforlife.com.