Start your holiday promotions now
Offering holiday promotions is a great way to promote your practice: they generate excitement and encourage people to book sessions, purchase gift certificates, and purchase products. This article highlights three types of promotions that can be used for any holiday, then concludes with tips on how to advertise your holiday promotions.
The holidays are not limited to the traditional fall and winter holidays of Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah and Kwanza. Many other important celebrations include:
• New Year’s Day
• Valentine’s day
• St. Patrick’s Day
• Mothers’ Day
• Father’s father
• Independence Day
• President’s Day
• Veterans Day; and
• Pride Day
Then there are industry-specific holidays, such as Massage Makes Me Happy & Healthy Day, an annual celebration of massage therapy that takes place every March 20. Also consider special awareness days, weeks, and months that might be important to your target market demographics and health issues, such as Teacher Appreciation Day or Skin Cancer Awareness Month.
Although it’s not technically a holiday, you can plan a special promotion for Small Business Saturday and take advantage of all the publicity generated for this national event. You can also design a Cyber Monday campaign if you sell products or gift certificates online.
Exclusive treatments for holiday promotions
Exclusive treatments are a fun way to introduce customers to new services and products and can be created with the holidays in mind. Offering signature treatments is one of the easiest ways to indirectly increase your product sales and encourage reservations because they generate customer excitement and anticipation for the next special offer.
Give your signature treatments fun titles that pique your customers’ curiosity. Create packages that include a special routine and items like custom scrubs, aromatherapy blends, topical pain relievers, or hot/cold compresses. After the session is over, show clients the products you used and ask them if they would like to buy any to take home.
A lot of stress often accompanies winter holidays, so you can develop several different options of different durations (and products), including an express service that helps them relax quickly and get back to their busy schedule.
Include a product they can take with them, such as a relaxing essential oil or soothing aromatherapy candle. Fun titles could be The Pumpkin Pie Experience, The Ginger Snap, The Candy Cane Treatment, The Hot Chocolate Wrap, Peppermint Flurry or Winter Wonderland.
Or keep it simple by enhancing your standard treatments with seasonal scents, like cinnamon or cranberry, and sell items with those scents.
One option for Signature treatments is to cook the products in sessions. Cooking is done by creating a signature treatment that includes using one or more products during the session and giving the rest of the product to the client to take home. This approach takes the stress out of selling. This is also a great strategy if you employ therapists, as therapists can focus on treatment and don’t have to worry about sales.
A simple example of a signature treatment with baked goods is the “Weekend Warrior Pain Relief Treatment,” which includes a 90-minute massage with topical pain reliever and a warm compress. After the treatment, the client goes home with the rest of the topical pain reliever and the warm compress.
Now let’s take a look at pricing for signature treatments. Let’s say your standard 90-minute session rate is $100. The topical retail price is $25 and the heat pack retail price is $20, for a total of $45; your cost for the products is $25. You price this special treatment at $130. The customer saves $15 and you earn enough to cover the cost of your product. It’s a win/win experience for everyone.
Plus, by including a product that needs to be restocked, and if the customer really likes it, you’ve set it up for continued sales.
Product sets for holiday promotions
Bundling a product with other products or certificates is an effective holiday selling technique. Customers are always on the lookout for unique gifts throughout the year. Bundling products with a gift certificate provides instant gratification (the products) and something for later (the session).
Consider pairing the items you sell in your cabinet with other festive items. For example, in February, you could bundle together a personal care tool, essential oil, mug, and chocolate for Valentine’s Day. A Mother’s Day set could include essential oils, a body scrub, body lotion, a self-care tool, and an eye pillow.
When putting together packages, offer a variety of packages that vary in price, so your customers can feel good about their purchase while staying in their financial comfort zone. Consider putting together a basic kit that costs around $25, a grooming kit that costs around $50, and a deluxe kit that costs $100 or more.
If a gift certificate for your services isn’t included in the package, make a sign that encourages people to add a certificate. Your $50 kit might say something like “$50 for the kit.” Add a gift certificate for a one hour session for only $50 more. You can also effectively generate new customers with these retail packages by including a business card and an invitation to an open house or a free mini-massage.
Package products attractively. You can use baskets or pretty bags. Sometimes the simple act of tying a ribbon makes a purchase special.
Advertise your holiday promotions
Advertise your promotions at least several weeks in advance. Ideally, start planting seeds for the big winter holiday season in September.
Keep it simple with a statement in your promotional materials: “Avoid the holiday crisis with the gift of health. We offer a selection of wellness products and services.
As the holiday season approaches, ramp up your promotional campaigns to full power by the start of November. Include photos, especially if you’re including products in the promotion.
• Posters: Print posters announcing your promotion and post them at the reception and in the washrooms. Place posters in bookstores, health food stores, gyms, sports centers and anywhere you can find your target markets.
• Website: Place a banner on your website about gift certificates, special treats and special holiday offers.
• Email Marketing: Include announcements in your electronic newsletters and email outings.
Add a tagline to your correspondence that says something like “Buy the gift of wellness.”
• Advertising: Post ads in local publications. Place ads online.
• Public Appearances: Be sure to mention your holiday promotions whenever you give talks and presentations or are invited to a podcast.
• Merchandising: Set a festive tone by decorating your office.
• Social Media: Post your promotions on your social media sites. You can use photos or GIFs to add flair to your posts. Post an ad online. Create a Facebook event.
Phrases that inspire gift shopping
• Give the gift of health.
• Your one-stop-shop for gifts they’ll love.
• Gifts they will love and do them good!
• Our wellness products are one-size-fits-all gifts.
• Massage makes everyone happy!
• Give yourself and others the gift of AHHHHHH this holiday!
Create a Facebook event
• Go to your newsfeed and click on “Pages” in the left menu
• Go to your page
• Click on “Events”
• Click on “Create an event” and click on “In person”
• Add event name, start and end dates, description and details.
• Click on “Create an event”
Create an offer on your Facebook business page
• Go to your News Feed and click on Pages in the left menu
• Go to your page
• Access to Meta Business Suite
• Click on “Trade”
• “Offers” can be found in the “Promotions” drop-down menu
• Click on the “Create offers” button
• Enter the details and duration of your offer
• Click on “Create an offer”
Cooperative marketing for holiday promotions
Cooperative marketing often increases the success of holiday marketing activities, reduces risks and costs, saves time and effort, and makes these tasks more enjoyable. Pooling resources helps you afford more imaginative, elaborate, expensive and long-term marketing projects.
Some of the best pairings for cooperative marketing for holiday promotions are between a massage therapist and another wellness practitioner who serves the same target market, or other businesses that would appeal to your target markets (such as retail establishments , suppliers and organizations).
You can arrange a Valentine’s Day special that includes treats from a local bakery, flowers, music, chocolate, and a massage. You can also team up with another massage therapist and offer a couples massage with the package.
I hope this article has inspired you to consider creative holiday promotions. Once you have one or more in place, get busy promoting them and watch your vacation income blossom.
About the Author
Cherie Sohnen-Moe is a recognized massage, business and marketing expert. She has worked in the massage industry since 1978 and is the author of the “Business Mastery” manual and co-author of “The Ethics of Touch” and “Retail Mastery”. She is also a MASSAGE magazine star, one of a select group of innovative therapists and teachers who educate the magazine’s massage therapist community in our print magazine, on our social media channels and online.
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