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Are You Carrying the Right Products?
By: Carol and Rob Trow
Posted: June 27, 2014, from the July 2014 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.
A skin care facility can be beautiful and its team can be wonderful, but if the retail products available are not what clients want or they don’t produce the desired results, home-care sales will be poor, client retention will be dismal and the spa will falter. For that reason, product lines need to be chosen carefully and evaluated yearly.
1. Research clients’ service desires through a survey.
Then, look at the product lines carried. If retail is comprised of mostly fluff products, but clients want serious, anti-aging home care—or vice versa—the target has been missed. It may be important to find a new line or add one to your existing offerings.
2. If the line doesn’t fit your client demographic, it won’t sell.
Lines that meet clients’ needs must be the ones carried. All too often, product lines are selected based on familiarity. It is not uncommon to hear that a line was selected solely because it was used in someone’s school or a team member simply likes it.
3. If treatment goals aren’t met, products won’t sell.
If the treatment goals of clients are not met by the professional services and home-care products, the products will stay on the shelves and service upgrades will fade into distant memories. Always listen to the skin care goals clients aspire to, and choose a product line that will support the team in helping clients achieve or exceed their skin care expectations.
4. Seek out stronger back bar products.
Choose lines that have appropriate professional products that are more intense and stronger for use in professional treatment protocols—not just larger sizes of retail products sold out front. Additional benefits need to be realized from the products used in the treatment room. What does it say to a client if the products recommended to them for home care are exactly the same as those used in your professional treatments?
5. Look beyond the products.
Make sure the line selected has an unparalleled record as a strategic partner—not simply as a supplier.
The business support you will need from a new business partner should include: extensive education and training; marketing and open house support; trade-out and buy-back programs for lines being replaced; newsletter assistance; promotional and collateral materials; before-and-after pictures; returns with no questions asked; technical support; protocol development and signature treatments; treatment menu assistance; client seminars; no-minimum orders; seasonal incentives; participation in employee incentives; discounted employee purchase programs; and drop shipments to clients in the event they are traveling or need something that isn’t currently available at the spa.
6. Select unique products.
It’s potentially critical to a spa’s financial success that products that are selected that are not available on every street corner.
You put a great deal of time and effort in recommending home-care products—you must make sure your clients return to you to buy their products instead of getting them elsewhere or price-shopping them. When this happens, you and your team, who work so hard educating and treating clients, lose out.
Carol Trow has 20 years of experience in the medical skin care field working with Environ. Trow and her husband own DermaConcepts, the exclusive United States distributor of Environ Skin Care. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Rob Trow has published more than 100 articles on skin care science and practical business solutions. Trow frequently speaks about topics of interest at national and international meetings, as well as to medical spas, estheticians and physicians. He can be reached at email@example.com.