NOV 2014

DAYSPA is the business resource for spa & wellness professionals! Each issue covers the latest in skin care, spa treatments, wellness services and management strategies.

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44 DAYSPA | NOVEMBER 2014 Future in the Balance penetrating actives into their clients' skin and selling those power players in home care too. The consumer is also in love with oils—the light, easily absorbed kinds, sourced from argan and nuts. We're also see- ing Amazonian plants such as chia seeds, which help exfoliate delicate, mature skin more gently than do retinols. Another seed from the Giant White Bird of Paradise plant improves luminosity on the molecular level. These seeds are also helping to create sophisti- cated sunscreens that increase SPF but don't up the chemical quotient. What can we expect in terms of spa technology? King: Back in the day we used to see equipment fads, but we now know that workhorses such as micro- dermabrasion, galvanic and light therapy are here to stay. We'll continue to see diluted versions of medical equipment for the skin therapist. Boghosian: Micro-needling is booming, as it's a more 'natural' high-tech treatment. Lyon: Training technology is undergoing a shift. We'll see more programs that offer full-blown service tutori- als online. Spa owners are taking advantage of options to train new staff on performing treatment protocols via simple, custom-tailored digital training modules. Tell us about the most explosive marketing tactics the future holds. Freund: Customers are using YouTube as their primary search engine and, in this sphere, the client is queen, critic, expert and decision-maker. One of the most ef- fective ways to drive brand awareness and, ultimately, sales, is to encourage clients to create peer-to-peer, how-to beauty videos and testimonials that highlight your spa's take-home products and services. There are even apps that reward customers for creating and sharing content—it's a very exciting time to be in beauty! Boghosian: Spa owners shouldn't underestimate the power of visual social media. Everyone should be on Instagram, in particular—showing off their products, spaces and promotions. King: Social media is the best and worst thing to happen to our indus- try, because after services, clients are immediately tweeting either about how amazing their visit to your spa was, or grumbling that your treatments are a rip-off and a staff member was rude. So it's more crucial than ever to pay attention to detail-oriented customer service. Employees need to check on clients' preferences, how to pronounce their names and so on, before those guests arrive at your spa. Many owners over-focus on the wrong things, like trying to hit sales targets, but if you build everything around who your cli- ent is and what she needs, all that other good stuff will come. Brown: I've started seeing a trend of burnout. People are overwhelmed and using social media less—they're more interested in actual human connection. Owners are going back to basics: solidifying simple referral programs, incentivizing word-of-mouth marketing and running in-house promotions. I also think deal sites' hold over the industry will diminish in 2015. Soukup: Loyalty programs and membership pro- grams will grow more crucial as clients' options increase—but these two things are not the same! For today's clients, I recommend loyalty programs that involve dispensing points—say, a point for every dol- lar spent—that guests can redeem for branded items such as gifts, robes and water bottles. Rather than a treatment reward, which gets expensive, this system doubles as a promotion: every time guests use their 'prizes', they think about your spa. Membership pro- grams, on the other hand, involve a monthly fee for regular services. Spas should aim to recruit enough members so that at the beginning of each month there's enough money in the till to break even. The rest is just gravy. But the biggest problem I see with Spas should recruit enough members so that at the beginning of each month there's enough money to break even. BOTTLE: © HITOMI SOEDA/GETTY: ARGAN OIL:

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