How can I rebrand my spa without losing my business identity or alienating existing customers?

When considering rebranding, it’s essential to start with a deep understanding of what is most important to your guests. The spa concept, design and tone can play a key role in attracting the clientele you want. However, contrary to popular belief, it’s the clients, not the owners, that define the brand, based on their perception and experiences of and interaction with it.

In order to have a smooth concept transition, you must delve into why your customers come to your establishment, and why they return. Take note of the details: feedback, trends and behaviours. Carry out a full audit, to make it clear which ideas should be kept, introduced and omitted and to highlight areas where improvement is needed

In some instances, it may be as simple as refining your treatment offering and level of ongoing training, to give your spa an edge over your competitors. However, my experience has shown me that a full rebranding always works best: when the spa holds onto what works, but improves cracks in the foundation and introduces innovative new treatments.

I remember my first hammam 14 years ago like it was yesterday; the lovely aromatic scent of the steam, the way I was cared for and the beautiful relaxation room with tea and refreshments. Guests will always remember the experience and the success of your new identity comes down to if you can offer an experience that differs from the rest.

Shawna Morneau is the founder and managing director of Dubai-based consultancy Neaumorinc, which helps develop skincare formulations and product lines for the spa and beauty industries. A trained therapist, she has previously held spa manager and director roles, including director of spa for the Four Seasons in Moscow and Baku, Azerbaijan