Membership Programs and Series Retain Clients

December 2, 2014 Kate Rankin

Salon and spa client retention tactic: Membership programs and appointment series

Membership programs and series are well-suited to spas and salons, and are a frequently used customer retention strategy. Here’s how you can use memberships and appointment series to keep your clients coming back again and again.

Membership Programs

Membership programs anchor your clients to your business in a way that few retention measures can. Typically, these programs are designed for your loyal customers—usually the top 10 percent of your most frequent or profitable clients. You can build this list using your spa or salon management software.

Membership programs create a longer term relationship with customers, make them feel appreciated and encourage them to refer your spa or salon. But, candidly, one of the ways membership programs keep customers coming back is the monthly fee clients pay to become a member. They’ve literally invested in your business and become more permanently aligned with your spa or salon, expecting reduced prices on services or products in return.

As a spa and salon owner or manager, the attraction of membership programs is that you can design them to be a perfect fit for your business, tailoring every offer to your spa or salon’s unique services and treatments. The most effective membership programs focus first and foremost on the benefits that customers will gain from joining, such as access to premium appointment times, a reduced price on a favorite product, or a complimentary service or treatment.

If you don’t have a membership program, but are interested in establishing one, here are some things to consider:

  • When creating membership tiers, consider who your clients are and how much they’re willing to spend monthly or annually. If your clients have more disposable income, create a few high-end options. If they represent a range of incomes, create at least one affordable option and one premium option. Use the client profiles in your spa or salon management software to help you gather this information.
  • While long-term benefits are great, cost savings is another powerful motivator to encourage your clients to become a member. It could be a combination of services, treatments and specials. For instance, you could offer a free birthday blowout with 10% off on certain products, plus the ability to roll over unused benefits. Or it could be their membership fee gets them a massage session or facial plus a 10% discount on all products. The combinations are endless and flexible!
  • Research what your competitors are doing and learn from both their best and worst practices. This will help you be that much more successful in retaining clients.

Series

A series is a prepaid bundle of services, treatments or therapies that clients can purchase in advance.

Spas can entice their clients with the therapeutic results of a planned and regular treatment schedule that might include massages, facial treatments, and waxing services at discounts from 10 to 20 percent for a three- or six-appointment series. Salons can create similar series with services, such as blowouts, repair treatments, manicures and pedicures.

Series can be a great way to lock in repeat business from clients who visit your spa or salon on a regular basis. Having a spa or salon management software that can help you create and manage them will allow you to:

  • Create multiple types of series that will appeal to your customers and their preferences.
  • Assign benefits, quantities, frequencies, and redemption timeframes.
  • Provide flexible payment options, including paying online or mobile payments.
  • Streamline your check-in and checkout processes.
  • Accurately track and automate redemption of your appointment series.

Once you decide on the structure and content of your membership program or series, it’s not enough just to have them listed on your website. In order to really grow these two marketing outlets, you need to constantly promote them. A few ways to do that are:

  • Have a membership promotion event at your location.
  • Send your customers an email.
  • Announce on your business’s social media account.
  • Train your staff to highlight the benefits to clients.
  • Post a sign at your business – in the window, at the front desk and at every station.
  • Around the holidays, encourage clients to purchase for their friends and family, and throw in a free gift for the purchaser.
  • Give current clients a free service, treatment, or retail product if one of their family or friends becomes a member or purchases a series, as well.

Membership programs and series can also help you gather important information on the buying habits of your customer base, and this information can help you understand your clients, which helps you to better retain them.

For more tips on how to retain your clients, check out our guide.

About the Author

Kate Rankin

Kate Rankin is a writer and communicator with extensive experience in Public Relations, Media Relations and Marketing. She's spent the lion's share of her career in networking, which served as the perfect segue for writing about Booker's innovative software platform.

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