As Federal regulatory changes impacted funding to Medicare and Medicaid in the United States, many allied healthcare service providers, found their reimbursements for certain services fall. These changes have encouraged physicians, wellness practitioners, laser and radiological imaging providers and other allied health businesses, to seek a supplemental revenue stream.
The medspa sector is rapidly growing, in tandem with America’s aging population. New and advanced laser and ultrasound therapies provide real results through clinical aesthetic procedures, including wrinkle reduction, skin tightening and smoothing, acne scar treatment, tattoo removal, and ablation, or skin resurfacing. One of the most highly coveted treatments available in a quality medspa, is fat destruction. Using ultrasound waves and laser devices (FDA approved), clinicians can target fat deposits in the abdomen, arms, thighs, hips and buttocks, for up to 32% fat removal (or up to 1.5 inches) within 1-4 weeks after every treatment session, with Ultrashape™ by Syneron Candela.
We were referred to an allied health service owner in Grapevine Texas, through an industry contact. The owner was in the pro forma stage of planning an expansion, to transform a new wing of his existing practice, to a medspa. Given a negative experience with a ‘high priced no results’ SEO service provider years earlier in another business division, the owner was skeptical about digital marketing in general.
The client’s business has been historically based on B2B revenue flow, with referrals to two imaging clinics through an established network of local physicians and medical care centers. Our challenge, was to create a brand that resonated within the industry, and features that would help differentiate the new medspa, from over 10 established clinical aesthetics professionals in the area.
Leveraging on the existing business name “Eclipse” our team designed a luxury logo, that would be used not only on marketing materials, but also on in-house branding for towels, and uniforms for the staff. From there, we did research and discovered that many medspa practices in the area, while spending heavily on Google AdWords and promotional campaigns, had minimal representation on websites. We identified that having a responsive, information laden site with a robust aesthetics blog, would help to differentiate our client from the competition.
As many consumers browse for clinical aesthetic services online, it was important to us to demonstrate a responsive site design, with a mobile experience that would be functional, informative and easy for the target market consumer to use. We increased the font size, and reduced some of the menu items on mobile view, to make it a concise experience. Visitors on mobile devices can also access the blog, with a simple navigation, and booking a consultation was made accessible by smart phone.
The medspa industry is full of websites, with images of women who are ‘perfect’ aesthetically. While we have what we call ‘goal’ pictures on the site, we wanted to take a different approach, and show women and men from the age group most likely to be seeking out clinical aesthetic services. We have attractive but ‘real’ pictures of attractive men and women aged 40-60 on the website, specifically to dispense with apprehension that older consumers sometimes feel, when entering a luxury medspa. We wanted them to feel accepted, and connected to a team of ‘down to earth’ clinical experts, that would help them realize their aesthetic goals.
This was a major marketing point of differentiation, and at the Grand Opening event, I received two comments from visitors who said they felt ‘comfortable’ because the pictures were not of 20-year-old models. That psychology, and comfort level, was important to differentiate Eclipse Medspa as a service provider that was supportive, nurturing and compassionate enough, to design affordable treatment plans (with financing options) for their clients.
Ranking A Website in a Saturated Marketplace
The next challenge was to help the client rapidly rank their website, in a market where major franchises with large AdWords spends, had escalated the costs of specific and commonly searched key words and terms. We worked within the budget allocated by the client, for a three-month period, and achieved page one status on multiple search terms.
What was exciting for the team, was achieving Google 3-Pack after five weeks, placing the new medspa in the number two position, right below the regional franchise leader, Sona Medspa. For readers who are not sure what the Google 3-Pack offers, it is the recommendation by Google for the top three (and sometimes four) businesses in the category of search. In our case, we landed that result in ‘Grapevine Medspa’ which is the leading search term for the client’s services in the area. This amazing work was done by my partner, Cory Hubbell, who was also recently interviewed for SEO strategy in Google Magazine.
New Business Launch – Marketing Materials
Carrying through consistently with branding, we evaluated marketing materials that the medspa would need, to serve its clients. By working directly with the management of the facility (the senior technician had no previous experience in digital marketing), we designed the essentials, including:
- Business cards
- Service pamphlet (tri-fold)
- Service rate card (double sided)
- Discount loyalty card
- Waiting room and medspa videos (slide presentations with music)
- Event invitations
- Print marketing flyers
- Contest entry card (for promotions)
- Foam boards and easel displays
Unfortunately, some staff attrition lead to some difficulty, right before the Grand Opening event. My experience coordinating trade show and corporate events was timely, and I was glad to help my client recover, and delegate to his wonderful staff, to launch his new business and start consumer outreach.
We invited the Grapevine Chamber of Commerce, organized catering and champagne, and provided prizes and gift bags to guests throughout the evening. Every guest was provided a service pamphlet and a 25% off service rebate card. It was a fantastic evening, supported by samples and swag provided by Syneron Candela, the manufacturer of the medspa equipment. Most importantly, core staff were able to learn some valuable tips on event administration and organization, that will prove very useful to the team in the future, as they plan to host monthly information events, to meet more local clientele.
The client hired an inside sales caller, who is having a high success rate, scheduling free consultations at Eclipse Medspa. The personalized approach is working well, and post-launch, I expect them to continue to grow, and expand, as they foster new positive relationships with clients who are looking for quality aesthetic services, without being made to feel intimidated by an environment of perfection, rather than one of understanding and sincere care for the customer.
This is our third client that we have assisted with marketing, event and brand management in the medspa sector, and we hope to enjoy many more projects, as the industry continues to grow, making advanced clinical aesthetics more affordable, for the average consumer.