How do you win back clients?
- By Jean Shea
- on Jul 22, 2021
Clients come and go for any number of reasons. You may lose clients because they move or need to make changes to their budget because of a change in employment. But what about clients who stop booking appointments for no apparent reason? Because a client leave doesn’t mean, they will stay away forever. At least, you want to make an effort to regain their business. Winning back clients requires being proactive about marketing and where necessary, making changes to your operation that may be driving away business.
The first step in winning back clients involves research. Before you do anything to try to win back clients, ask questions. Develop a brief questionnaire or survey to send to clients – former and current. Keep questions short and ask only those that you’ll use and that have a purpose. You also can post questions on your website or on your social media channels. Try posting an open-ended question from time to time to see what kind of feedback you get.
Check online reviews
In addition to going directly to clients for feedback, check online reviews. Everyone has an opinion, and many clients are more than happy to share the experiences they have with businesses on online review sites. While you may worry about what a current or former client might say about your spa or massage practice in the virtual world, online reviews are a fact of life today.
Online reviews also are important because they let you know what areas of your spa or massage practice may need improvement. By monitoring reviews, you learn what customers are seeking from your products and services, how well you are meeting expectations, and what you need to do to improve. Because of an online review, you may find that clients don’t like a particular skin treatment or aren’t getting the desired results from a massage.
If you find out that some aspect of your business has caused clients to leave, such as waiting too long for an appointment or disappointment over treatment results, work with your team to address these issues. Some client complaints may be unwarranted, but you may find that there are ways to improve your service offering.
Once you understand the reasons clients have left, start planning a marketing campaign to regain their business. Your marketing plan should include an assessment of the situation, a strategy to drive the campaign, and specific tactics that support your strategic goals. In your marketing literature, website, and social channels, promote any changes you are making to your treatments and retail offerings, etc., to incentivize former clients to come back.
You also might want to arrange a customer appreciation day, during which time you’d invite current and former clients into your spa or massage practice for refreshments, a complimentary neck or foot massage, and a little gift.
Create a customer loyalty program
Consider creating a customer loyalty program. In particular, it will help clients who are experiencing some changes in their finances. Before you begin your program, talk to your best customers to understand what they value about your service. Find out how well they understand your complete offering and, if appropriate, how they view your competitors. Once you have this information, you can better fashion a loyalty program built around the services your clients request and the products they purchase. Options for your loyalty program include:
- Accumulating points to apply for future services or product purchases
- Discounts on select treatments
- For example, after a certain number of massages or body treatments, clients are entitled to a facial massage or pedi-treatment
Step up social media
Social media is where you will find current and future clients, so be sure to include a strong social media component in your marketing campaign. Make sure to provide useful and engaging content; don’t just focus on your spa or massage practice. Post industry news, health tips, and ingredient information, too. Also, ask for input and opinions and see if you can get a dialogue going.
Don’t second guess why clients leave. Make an effort to get them back. Whatever happens, you’ll learn something that will help your business in the long run.