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    Industry • Marketing

    How to Build A Spa Marketing Plan

    Running and promoting your spa are two different things. That’s why it’s important to have a spa marketing plan that will highlight your most competitive features.

    For most beauty specialists, it might seem more natural to serve clients than to think of ways to promote your business. That’s why it’s essential to create a spa marketing plan that summarizes your audience, goals, and core strategy. While the specific elements will vary depending on services offered, marketing plans are an invaluable first step in putting forward your best selling points.

    First things first: Who are your clients?

    A successful marketing campaign has the best solutions for the needs of a potential client. Think about what a spa customer might search for online. Some might seek hair or nail care. Others may be interested in a facial and massage. Wherever possible, look behind the immediate need for what it says about your customer — a client who is interested in massages might be looking to relax after managing children or a stressful job.

    The purpose of this exercise is twofold. On one level, it helps you decide which unique spa features to promote in marketing campaigns. On another, it helps you define client personas who will be receptive to certain types of advertisements. These insights can help you create compelling ads or corner the market on a new service that your competition hasn’t pursued.

    Let’s say you’re targeting parents as a core audience. Conducting an audit of your spa services might generate the following strategies:

    • Including mothers in your advertisements and promotional images to resonate with your audience.

    • Highlighting existing services that would interest a mother looking to relax, such as massages or aromatherapy.

    • Creating new services around parents, including on-site child care or couples packages.

    Whatever services you offer or clientele you wish to pursue, bringing them together is the best starting point for your salon marketing plan.

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    Strike a balance between paid ads and word-of-mouth marketing

    Your spa marketing plan shouldn’t rely on paid advertisements alone — some of the best campaigns operate on word-of-mouth as clients praise your service. By combining these elements, spas can attract new clients while generating repeat appointments for the long-term.

    Paid advertising

    • Social media: Instagram has become a digital beauty channel for a massive audience, particularly among Gen Z demographics. With paid advertisements, you can guarantee views for spa content that blends in with the Stories feed.

    • Newspaper flyers: Print media has seen better days, but it remains a crucial channel for many clients. Paid newspaper ads will attract the attention of these local audiences.

    • On-location advertisements: Don’t overlook the potential of on-site advertising! Your spa storefront has windows, a sidewalk, and — depending on location — perhaps a front lawn. Even a sidewalk sign can be a great way to engage with bystanders. Invest in your location and it will reward you in turn. 

    Word-of-mouth marketing

    • Viral marketing: The ideal advertisement has a life of its own and will be shared and discussed across all channels. Funny videos, memes, or well-written social media posts are ideal formats for this kind of distribution.

    • Referral programs: A client who loves your spa probably knows other people who would love it too. Give them the opportunity to spread the word with referral discounts or rewards.

    • Giveaways: Your spa can quickly assemble samples, free product giveaways, or beauty bundles to get new and existing customers excited. Publicizing a raffle is one way to generate interest across a broad audience while attracting visitors to your location.

    You’ve likely noticed there are lots of ways paid ads can overlap with word-of-mouth marketing. A well-executed social media post always has the potential to go viral. Spa owners can also promote referral programs and giveaways through local advertising channels. Even a cleverly-written sidewalk sign can become a social media sensation. The key is to ensure that any advertisements — paid or otherwise — will resonate with your potential clients.

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    The best spa marketing plan is cultivating customer loyalty

    Most businesses focus on reaching new clients with marketing campaigns, but your existing customers are actually far more valuable. Studies on the subject have consistently shown that it costs five times more to acquire a client than to retain one. What’s more, merely keeping an additional 5% of regular customers can increase your profits by a minimum of 25%.

    So how do you retain clients? Simple: Give them reasons to be loyal to you. Offering excellent service and bonding with visitors is a great start, but you can also build loyalty directly into your spa features:

    • Memberships: Customers are far more willing to make consistent appointments if they feel it’s a valuable investment. You can provide a simple punch card — the tenth visit is free! — or offer rewards for long-time regulars.

    • Referral programs: Hey, those referral programs are back! Seriously though, allow your clients to invite their friends. If you want to sweeten the pot, offer joint sessions and treat appointments as social occasions!

    • Personalized promotions: Everybody likes to feel appreciated, even if it’s just a small gesture. Spas can accomplish this by emailing personalized deals to clients. Even a birthday discount will show that you value them as customers and a human being!

    As you should have gathered by now, a spa marketing plan isn’t just a document of advertising ideas. It’s a strategy rooted in your values and the needs of clients. By following these ideas, you won’t only bring together your beauty expertise, spa services, and a deep understanding of your clients. You’ll have an incredibly solid plan — and then the ads will seem to write themselves.

    Want more tips? Learn how to boost your salon’s social rep with this comprehensive guide!

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