Four incentive strategies for customer retention

Customer retention can be a challenge in the spa industry, but it’s key to business success. By some estimates, customer acquisition costs five times more than retention – meaning once you have a customer, you want to keep them.

And with so many wonderful spa options for guests out there, keeping people coming back to yours takes strategy – and sometimes creativity. Obviously, your guest experience should be second to none, and your staff should be the best there is – people will return if they love a certain service provider. On top of that, enticing incentives are another important element. You want to show your guests that you appreciate them, and you want them to want to return.

And with Mother’s Day just around the corner, now is a great time to really think about how to show that you value your customers. Here are just a few strategies that will provide incentives, as well as increase occupancy, and improve your guest relationships:

Loyalty programs

This is a program through which guests receive incentives for returning to your spa, and it is a no-brainer. If you do not have a loyalty program, you must start one now. Offer a free massage or facial after a certain number of treatments; offer upgrades, gifts and/or buy-one-get-ones, which can encourage guests to bring a friend. Loyalty programs can also be personalized. For example, a points-based program where earning 100 points gets a customized gift, and 150 points get a personalized massage treatment. This is where creativity comes in: ask yourself what sort of program you can offer that is better than the competition’s.

Memberships

There are different types of membership programs you can introduce, including a discount system, a service-based system, and an unlimited system. All of these involve the customer paying a monthly fee. With the first, they receive a set discount on all services, with the second a set number of services, and the third an unlimited number of services. These can also be combined. Memberships are not only a brilliant way to keep customers coming back, they also provide a steady income stream.

Promotions

Spa coupons and gift cards are a well-known incentive. If you’re in the luxury arena, you might also want to think adding on, rather than discounting. Sometimes discounting can diminish the appeal of luxury services, while adding something – such as an additional treatment or product to go with a purchased service – has the feel of a bonus gift. A series of treatments is an excellent way to keep people coming back for more. Mother’s Day, meanwhile, is the perfect time to do something for your existing customers – in the form of a mother-daughter promotion, for example. Let them know that they are appreciated by offering something they will enjoy. Again, it can be good to be creative.

Rewarding Customer Feedback

Offering incentives for feedback is a smart strategy on many levels. It is not only an incentive, but it offers the added benefits of letting you know where you can improve, and of letting the customer know that you value them and their opinions. Loyalty points or gifts are good incentives for feedback. Book4Time allows you to solicit feedback through surveys and comments cards, which can be sent out immediately after a customer leaves your spa, while the experience is still fresh in their mind.

Note that none of this will provide the outcome you want without proper communication. Your customers should be aware of our programs and of their benefits. Why should they become a member or join your loyalty program? You have to communicate this through your messaging.

Conversely, listening to your guests and really hearing what they are saying, and what they want, will help you figure out which incentives and which applications of these incentives work best for your particular customer base.

What do they want, and how can you give it to them? Establish a truly symbiotic relationship, and they will never leave.

Book4Time can also help you set up and manage all your loyalty programs, memberships, and promotions –along with all your related communications. Contact us today to find out how.