Are You Losing Your Salon Spa Clients?
It’s happened to all of us. We pay $$$ to get our phone to ring. When it does, we score and get a booking. THEN the client no-shows! Now what?
First, thank your receptionist.
Getting a caller to book is great! They called to find out about us, they had an interest, and we didn’t let them get away. What if they DIDN’T book? Will they call again? Unlikely. So if we didn’t waste the money spent to get the phone to ring and got them on the books, Hooray! Or if they didn’t book but you got them on your email list or sent them some follow up information that’s great too.
So what happened?
The client was booked, then didn’t show. Poof! They’re gone. Were they rushed into the booking? Were they not given a reminder call the night before? Were they not given directions? Perhaps they just don’t know proper spa etiquette and forgot to cancel. Or maybe they’re just flaky. If so, asking “what credit card would you like to hold your appointment with” will scare away those who can’t keep appointments and lower the number of no-shows you have. Regardless, the client is now LOST.
When the client doesn’t show for whatever reason, theirs or ours, we’re back to basically the same as not booking them the first time they called in. Even worse so now actually, since we either dropped the ball causing them to not make their appointment OR it’s their fault for not making it and now they are embarrassed to show up and admit their mishap. What are the chances of them coming back? Somewhere between slim and none. So they called in, we did our job and booked them, but it fell apart and now there are other issues interfering with them calling again. So we have a serious lead, but with no experience or relationship with us. Since they don’t really know us, they have no obligation to us and probably don’t even feel bad for their no-show (or cancellation). So what do we do?
This is so simple, yet hardly ever acted upon. We find them. Or in other words we go get our client. How so? Simple, we contact them to let them know we value their business (in case we messed up) and would like to see them (making them feel welcome and that “it’s ok” if they happened to have messed up). This also builds the relationship you have with them and THAT is how you keep clients from straying.
So how do we do this exactly? Like this. First, it starts with a call. Not the call at 5 minutes after to see if they’re lost, but the call later that day or the next to see what happened. Most likely you’ll be leaving a message, but the point is to show concern for what could’ve happened to make them miss their appointment. Sometimes you’ll find out about some emergency that came up such as a sickness or God forbid, a death in the family. Usually it’s just us reaching out. Then (and here’s the kicker) we send them a thank you card. We say thanks for choosing our spa and we’re sorry we missed meeting them. We also say we’d love to meet them in person and they’re always welcome (if we know what happened we’ll offer our condolences). Sometimes we’ll even toss in a small discount coupon/card to offer a little incentive to get them back in.
So FIND your clients. They already cost us by no-showing, so let’s turn that around and make them a welcome addition to our spas. Often this can even turn around flaky clients and teach them about proper spa etiquette. Take 5 minutes now to get together with your staff and let them know how to handle lost clients and improve your cash flow.