Getting Over the Post-holiday Slump

The skin care industry is often ignored during the month of January. Clients have spent enough money at the spa during the end of the year, primping and prepping for holiday parties, that January sales and services usually come to a quick halt. Getting clients back in the door is the key to brisk sales in the new year, so here are some great tips to turn the annual slump into an annual success ... without discounting.

Start early. Take advantage of the surge of clients during the holiday season, and start marketing for January. During this time, give every client the option of purchasing a value-added package of which half can be used now and the other half can be used in January. Sell an additional service packaged with a free gift that is only redeemable in January. For example, if a client comes in for a makeup application in December, pair it with a makeover/makeup lesson in January. The cost of the January makeup lesson can be credited with new makeup at the time of her appointment.

Partner with a local gym or fitness center. This is where all of your clients are starting January 1 thanks to New Year’s resolutions, so why not partner up and make the situation beneficial for both you and the gym owner. Offer to promote the gym during the holiday season from within your skin care facility. Include its marketing, or ask it to create a list of holiday eating and exercise tips to add a new kick to your e-blasts or Facebook posts. In January, it’s your turn to be in the spotlight. Put together a value-added package to offer to the gym’s clients, or some easy add-ons, such as a complimentary brow wax or spray tan, when they sign up for their memberships. Sponsor a boot camp or biggest loser group within the gym with a prize from the spa for reaching a milestone.

A New You for the New Year. This is the time to renew and refresh. Put together a multiservice package that includes services clients may have skipped out on during the holiday season, such as facials, massages and skin care consultations. Go through your clients from December and note what services they received so you can market ones that they may have skipped. A client who came in and got brow waxes every two weeks during November and December but not a bikini wax would probably jump on a creative package that included a bikini wax.

Bring in the specialists. Host a rep from one of the skin care lines you carry, a fitness guru, a nutritionist or a plastic surgeon. Invite clients in for some healthy treats and a chance to talk to the experts. Offer quick, nondiscounted services that evening to your clients, including brow and lip waxes, five-minute makeovers, spray tans, polish changes and skin consultations. Do these events weekly during the month of January instead of just one night; it will give the impression that you are dedicated to the focus on wellness for the new year, and will allow you to get more people in the door.

Look forward. February is right around the corner—start your Valentine’s Day marketing in mid-January. Couples services for massages and facials for this holiday can be pre-sold and pre-booked during the month of January. If you had clients make a holiday wish list, contact their spouses or boyfriends to purchase items for Valentine’s Day that they didn’t purchase during the holidays.

It’s important to be creative during the post-holiday slump, but it’s more important not to heavily discount in order to drive traffic. Be creative and add value to your services and products instead of slashing prices.

Kelly Richardson is the owner of Sonoma Tanning and is the designer of professional spa sunless tanning equipment and solutions called B.Bronz, which was recently featured in Bloomberg Businessweek. She can be reached at 707-546-6240 or at [email protected].

More in Marketing