OK…one last blog about the recent research data and then on to more fun things…like meeting Chrisina Ong last night at a cocktail party at Donna Karan’s….but first:
Let’s take one last look at the S curve with emergent, growth, maturity, and decline phases for the spa industry. (Check previous blogs if you want to see the graphs.) Here is the key point – our spa industry as a whole is definitely not in a mature phase where there is a leveling off of the entire industry. In fact we are seeing a great deal of growth in many of the segments especially in the medical spa, spa lifestyle real estate, and in the resort/hotel sectors.
I do think that when you look at traditional stand-alone day spas we are beginning to see flattening and it is becoming harder for them to make profits. The huge increase in the numbers of day spas has saturated some markets and now many traditional day spas are facing large numbers of competitors. These competitors include other day spas, resort, and hotel spas which are open to day guests (almost all of them), medical spas, and some new players like the highly discounted “no-frills” establishments, fitness clubs adding better spas, etc.
Critical point…..day spas that are facing this reality need to think about ways to begin a new S curve to breathe new life into their businesses. Here are some possibilities:
1. Narrow your focus and specialize in something that has growth opportunity and less competition.
2. Expand your offerings to include a segment which is in the growth phase.
3. Partner with someone (inside or outside of the spa industry) who is in the growth phase.
4. Turn the business over by selling it or even giving it away to someone who has the resources, energy, and vision to grow it again in new ways.
Here are some ideas of industry aspects that are more likely to be in a growth phase, which if incorporated properly, might help jump-start a flattening day spa:
- Express Services
- Budget Massages
- Budget Facial Treatments
- Mobile Spa
- Baby Spa
- All Men
- Party Spas
- Ayurvedic Focus
- Tween Focus
- Mobile Services
- Fitness Services (Yoga, Core, Pilates, etc.)
- Luxury Level
- Squeaky Clean Facility
- Medical Spas (the greatest opportunity might be here)
Think of businesses outside of the spa industry that have made some changes which started a new S curve and thus re-energized their businesses:
Dunkin’ Donuts began emphasizing lattes instead of their donuts.
Airlines that were threatened by the new low-cost airlines slashed their prices and then got creative to keep their customers.
McDonalds added playgrounds.
Movie theaters began letting you order tickets online.
Travel agents threatened with competition from online discounters began improving their service and changed their fee model.
I am sure you can think of other examples…in fact let us know by clicking on “Comments” and sharing them with us. This is a good time for us to help each other out with business ideas as it helps our entire industry to have strong healthy profitable businesses out there.