The Art of the Add-on Sale

By Melinda Minton Executive Director, SPAA | January 02, 2011

The art of the add-on sale is a crucial addition to business as usual in your hotel spa. While many of your guests might naturally book a massage, facial, manicure or pedicure it will be your staff that encourages them to add-on a brow shaping, body buff, multi-layer masquing or enroll in a one hour make up lesson. As odd as these additional services may sound to the lay spa-goer, add-on sales are as natural as breathing once the guest is at the spa receiving a treatment. In fact, many spa professionals would go so far as to say
that by not offering an add-on service as a suggestive sale the spa has professionally failed in educating the client. Consultative service sales are a part of the expected treatment by spa professionals and spa-goers alike.

The Natural Service Add-on

Add-on sales don't need to be bank breakers. In fact, most add-on sales are simply compliments to work performed within a single service at the spa. For instance, a client receiving a facial might not know that a little brow waxing or shaping would greatly enhance their overall appearance. For that matter any type of facial waxing might be a natural conclusion to their esthetics treatment. While the client is in the solitude of a treatment room an overall discussion of the benefits of waxing is really right in line with their similar esthetics goals and might be a topic that the client would otherwise leave ignorant of.

Sunless tanning after a massage, especially for the traveler, is an additional topic of esthetic benefit. Many of those who self tan struggle with the process while on the road because of the hefty aerosol cans involved, the mess and the tedious nature of maintaining a self-administered tan. A professionally applied tan is just the formula for success. Furthermore, a body wrap, pressotherapy treatment, lymphatic drainage massage or similar slimming and detoxifying treatments allow the traveler feeling a bit bloated, out of their element and generally uncomfortable to slip easily into their wardrobe, feel refreshed and glow as if they are on an extended vacation. However, many travelers would never enquire as to receiving such treatments for a variety of reasons. The well mentioned add-on with a massage can be a god-send and a welcomed addition to the usual spa treatment.

Additional add-on services to a classic spa treatment include hand and foot treatments that compliment a manicure or pedicure. Oftentimes a client will come in seeking a standard executive manicure that would also benefit from a detailed glycolic cuticle treatment; an anti-aging hand masquing or a hydrating and invigorating paraffin hand dipping. Pedicure clients often require additional callous removal, nail bed therapy or would enjoy a reflexology massage to both ease foot discomfort and benefit comprehensive internal health. Without a suggestive sale to compliment the basic spa treatment, however, these clients are lost to their own devices. It is challenging enough for the typical spa client to choose a basic therapy let alone to imagine treatment that as small additions would naturally compliment their therapeutic journey at the spa.

The Add-on as a Package

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Sales & Marketing: Selling Experiences

There are innumerable strategies that Hotel Sales and Marketing Directors employ to find, engage and entice guests to their property, and those strategies are constantly evolving. A breakthrough technology, pioneering platform, or even a simple algorithm update can cause new trends to emerge and upend the best laid plans. Sales and marketing departments must remain agile so they can adapt to the ever changing digital landscape. As an example, the popularity of virtual reality is on the rise, as 360 interactive technologies become more mainstream. Chatbots and artificial intelligence are also poised to become the next big things, as they take guest personalization to a whole new level. But one sales and marketing trend that is currently resulting in major benefits for hotels is experiential marketing - the effort to deliver an experience to potential guests. Mainly this is accomplished through the creative use of video and images, and by utilizing what has become known as User Generated Content. By sharing actual personal content (videos and pictures) from satisfied guests who have experienced the delights of a property, prospective guests can more easily imagine themselves having the same experience. Similarly, Hotel Generated Content is equally important. Hotels are more than beds and effective video presentations can tell a compelling story - a story about what makes the hotel appealing and unique. A video walk-through of rooms is essential, as are video tours in different areas of a hotel. The goal is to highlight what makes the property exceptional, but also to show real people having real fun - an experience that prospective guests can have too. The June Hotel Business Review will report on some of these issues and strategies, and examine how some sales and marketing professionals are integrating them into their operations.