SEP 2018

MedEsthetics—business education for medical practitioners—provides the latest noninvasive cosmetic procedures, treatment trends, product and equipment reviews, legal issues and medical aesthetics industry news.

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DECK THE HALLS when a person wins a gift card at an auction or in a raffl e, they come into the business and may become a long-term client," says Hunter. CELEBRATING YOUR PATIENTS As you prepare your gift promotions and get your staff ready for increased pre-holiday bookings, it's also important to think about how you can celebrate another successful year with your existing patients. "The holiday season is event season. Everyone wants to go to parties," says Aiossa. "Practices should take advantage of this and create their own holiday event." Reach out to your vendors and ask them to participate by providing staff, products or service samples. "They can provide education, gifts for a raffl e and help you promote the event," says Aiossa. "Invite your VIP clients and allow them to bring one or two guests each." For maximum exposure and good will, partner with a charity and donate a percentage of your sales from the event to the charity. "This connects you to a new audience, creates a good buzz and encourages people to attend," says Aiossa. True Radiance Medispa holds an annual holiday party with decorations, catering, music and mini-seminars on their treat- ments. "We keep it super fun and very low pressure," says Ontiveros. "It shouldn't be uber clinical or intimidating. Your atmosphere is super important." The holidays are the perfect time to create and promote membership packages, such as a series of CoolSculpting treatments or chemical peels, that patients can purchase for themselves or for a friend or family member. "During the holiday season, consumers are also more eager to spend money on themselves, and as the 'New Year, New You' messages start, consumers are thinking about taking care of themselves," says Aiossa. 38 SEPTEMBER 2018 | Med Esthetics © GETTY IMAGES If your practice or medspa donates products to charitable events, think about offering a gift card instead. Not sure how to jump on the gift card bandwagon? First, speak with your point-of-sale system vendor. "If your payment processing system has a gift card option, that is the easiest way to do it, because you don't have to switch anything," says Shelley Hunter, the "Gift Card Girlfriend" at "If it doesn't, you will have to either upgrade your system or pay to integrate this service through a third-party vendor." You can also work with an e-gift card provider, such as CashStar or "This gives you a chance to offer and redeem e-gift cards on your website. You don't have to infi ltrate your point-of- sale system at all," says Hunter. Consider offering both physicial gift cards and e-card options to provide maximum convenience to your clients. "There is also another option: Spafi nder (spafi," says Hunter. With Spafi nder, practices sign up and agree to accept the gift cards. The business is then listed on the Spafi nder website, and the cards are sold online and in retail businesses. "You can then include, 'Spafi nder gift certifi cates accepted here' in your email marketing, on your reception desk and on your website," says Hunter. Which is the best option—physical gift cards, e-cards or Spafi nder? All of the above, says Hunter. "I wouldn't look at any of these as exclu- sive," she says. "Sell plastic cards on the counter, offer e-gift card sales on your website and be part of Spafi nder. They're all part of an overall strategy to make your business giftworthy and giftable." If you are new to gift card sales, be sure to speak with your accountant about how to manage the income. "Ask about breakage, which is people who don't redeem their gift cards. The laws and accepted practices on how long you wait to report that income has changed over the years and can vary by region," says Hunter. Getting Started with Gift Cards

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