Everything has changed for our spa businesses since the pandemic, but there are so many creative approaches out there to getting back on track and creating a sense of "business as usual" with a twist, it's very encouraging. This week's article reprint is a really useful idea bag for you as you prepare to thrive with your clients this holiday season. The following is courtesy of Malinda McHenry - "The Esthetic Professor".
COVID-19 may be responsible for the cancellation of many big holiday events this year, but it doesn’t have to cancel out your holiday spirit! Many clients will be keeping their spirit close to home by hosting safe, private events. With Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza and New Year’s Eve just around the corner, now is the time to strategize how your business is going to thrive for your clients this holiday season.
Some businesses are open or are opening in phases, and some businesses are closing again, as it varies state to state with COVID-19 fluctuations. So, be open to doing business in a socially distant way. Be prepared to go all digital. Most of you have already stepped up your digital game by offering online orders with curbside pickup, personal deliveries and even online consultations. Consider getting a Zoom or Hangouts account, make sure your website is running well and make sure your e-commerce is engaged.
Branding is critical to standing out and driving business to you. If you can afford to create some personalized branded items to help market your spa, now is the time to do so. One item to offer is an emergency hygiene kit, that would include a pair of disposable gloves, disposable or branded cloth protective face mask and branded travel hand sanitizers inside a cute branded, airport compliant travel bag. There are many marketing companies online that have low minimum orders to make promotional items possible.
Contact your product representatives to find out what holiday gifts they are offering for your early purchase to ensure you have successful retail sales this season. Add those items to your marketing calendar to be sure that clients don’t miss out on the deals.
Be organized and establish your social monthly holiday marketing calendar with hashtags. Here are some upcoming 2020 holidays that are great for business.
November begins the season of gratitude.
Entrepreneurs Day. Nov. 19 is National Entrepreneurs Day (#EntrepreneursDay). Why not celebrate being a business owner with other business owners. Do a business to business (B2B) offer special pricing on your services and products. Cross promote with other like businesses that offer goods and services related to yours. For example, work with your local gym, family owned fashion boutique or a private nurse/nutritionist that promotes health and wellness services to drive business back and forth.
Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving Day is a day we have much to be thankful for, especially for our loyal clients. Send your message of thanks by e-mail or text, so it’s the first thing they see when they start this day! Send gratitude teasers for your upcoming holiday specials and focus on family, food and football!
Black Friday. Nov. 27 is Black Friday (#BlackFriday). Make this the best day to promote your online gift cards of the season! Be sure to offer easy delivery for the intended recipients and give back to your clients by giving them rewards or gift cards for a set amount of dollars spent so that they can apply it to their favorite service with you.
Small Business Saturday. Nov. 28 is Small Business Saturday (#ShopSmall). This is a great day to remind others that we are all small businesses and that by supporting local small businesses, our communities stay strong. Offer incentives to purchase by giving back to a local business owner that may be struggling.
Cyber Monday. Nov. 30 is #CyberMonday. Let’s get techy! It’s a great day to offer specials on beauty gadgets for home care use like personal microtoning systems, deep cleansing devices with LED or jade rollers with personalized skin care kits. If you can afford to, include free delivery or shipping to stay ahead of your competition.
December begins the season of giving with many religious observations. Regardless of how you celebrate, here are some dates to remember.
Giving Tuesday. #GivingTuesday is all about giving back to the charities or causes you support. Engage your clients to purchase items to donate. For example, you may offer discounted camouflage makeup kits to donate to your local Lupus foundation, acne skin care kits to donate to a home for teens or skin care and makeup items to donate to your local safe homes for women. Acknowledge on your social media platforms the number of kits you sold and go live when you deliver the kits. Include a list your client’s names on a card with the gifted kits.
Hanukkah. Dec. 10th. is the beginning of Hanukkah. If your faith observes this festival of lights, consider including a beautiful set of menorah candles with an LED service or LED homecare device purchased with a personal blessing.
Super Saturday. Dec. 19th. is #SuperSaturday. It is the last Saturday to get in those holiday purchases before Christmas. This is a great day to include gift wrapping, hand deliveries or expedient curbside pickup. Also, it’s a wonderful day to incentivize inventory close-outs by offering discounts to clients to stock up on products for last minute stocking stuffers.
Winter Solstice. The First Day of #WinterSolstice is Dec. 21. This is the day to remind your clients about winterizing their skin care regime. Offer holiday special services like a winter glow spray tan for a kiss of color. Or create head-to-toe luxury body kits with exfoliating scrubs, luxury nourishing oils and body butters designed to combat cold temperatures, cold winds and dry air from furnaces.
Chistmas Eve. Christmas Eve is all about stocking stuffers! Promote your hours that you will be available for last minute purchases in person and make sure to let your clients know they can purchase gift cards right up to Christmas day with your online delivery to their intended recipients.
Christmas Day. Hopefully, you will be enjoying this day with your friends and loved ones, but be sure to give a social media shout out to all those who supported your business over the holidays.
New Year’s Eve. Unlike previous years, most people will be celebrating New Year’s Eve at home in 2020. So, offer special makeup tutorials or in-home makeup applications for your party hostess. It’s a great day to include a set of removable lashes with their look. Offer specials on those last-minute waxing or spray tan services if you are open. Offer a post-holiday treatment redeemable only January 2 for your VIP clients to start their new year with a refreshing face and outlook!
Many of our businesses will be open, and as we all keep COVID-19, health and safety in mind, don’t forget we can still have open houses or holiday appreciation events of our own. Some social safe ways to do so are to create your events by RSVP with one-on-one shopping appointments, offer complimentary skin health consultations to new clients and create incentives to book post holidays so you will be busy at the start of the year. One-on-one celebration gives us more personalized and meaningful time to deepen our relationships and build client loyalty.
If your state still has you restricted for large gatherings, you can create a Zoom room party or Hangouts event! Let clients engage by wearing ugly sweaters or do a virtual white elephant party! Have clients drop off a wrapped gift under a certain dollar value and number the gift. The clients who donate will be given a link to the event, and when you draw a number for them, they will have a gift waiting at their next appointment! It is also a great way to share about any 2021 new services and goods you will be offering.
This holiday season can be as fulfilling and joyous as any before COVID-19. If you get into the spirit early and be creative, your clients will be inspired and want to do business with you.
Malinda McHenry is a licensed cosmetologist, esthetician, instructor, former school owner, published author, speaker and business owner with over 32 years of experience. Known as "The Esthetic Professor," she currently owns Bronzed N Beautiful Day Spa and The Academy of Advanced Aesthetic Arts, a post graduate hands on training center with online advanced education in Overland Park, Kansas. www.estheticprofessor.com