Hotel and day spas discount while destination spas push loyalty

The methods used to attract and retain clients vary considerably between day, hotel and destination spas, according to new research.

While 64% of day and 39% of hotel spa managers consider promotional activities such as discounting integral to increasing the frequency of guest visits, only 13% of destination spa managers feel the same. Instead, 33% of destination spa managers prioritise customer service in encouraging clients to return, with 27% focusing on loyalty schemes.

The research, carried out by students on the International Spa Management course at the University of Derby, surveyed best practice among spa managers across Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia and the US.

When it comes to attracting new customers, the day and hotel spa managers again cited promotional activities, such as special offers, reduced prices for multiple purchases, added value promotions and discounts as their preferred tools. However, the method of choice for destination spa managers is online marketing, with 31% naming this as their most successful method.

The research, which was carried out on behalf of and presented at the Professional Spa & Wellness Convention in London on February 24, also revealed differences in the approach to increasing retail sales. While 30% of day spa mangers said they use partnerships with well-established product houses to drives sales, the most popular strategy for destination spa managers is staff training and developing product knowledge. For hotel spa managers, promotional activities were again the method of choice, with 25% using these to boost retail sales.

Some 97% of spa managers, across all three segments, use social media to promote their businesses, with Facebook being the most popular platform across the board, followed by Twitter, TripAdvisor then YouTube.

This article was first featured in the April issue of Professional Beauty. To make sure you get the industry news first, subscribe to the magazine here.