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Q&A with SpaBeautySchools: Your Spa Business Questions Answered

I'm starting a spa; could you please give me a couple of examples of two massage therapists working on one client? I love to do extensive research on something before going in to business. I want to learn all about the pros and cons, including other people's mistakes, so I don't fall into the same traps. I'd like to also find out more information about medical spa training. --Liz K.

Hi Liz,

Thanks for your terrific questions! Starting a spa business is an exciting endeavor for sure.The first step to starting a spa business is formulating a detailed business plan. Planning is crucial, as it will give you a roadmap for overall business success. You'll need to define the extent of spa services and products you plan to offer, which will help determine the amount of startup capital you'll need.

Your choice of location is another important consideration; look for a building in a heavily populated area with plenty of parking. Don't forget about branding and marketing your spa business to differentiate yourself from the competition. That includes creating a compelling name; logo; slogan; signage; Web site; Web, direct-mail, and yellow-page advertising; and referral incentive systems, to name a few. Remember, you're not only responsible for delivering products and spa services--as a spa business owner, you're responsible for marketing those products and services. After all, if the community doesn't know about the fabulous spa services you provide, how will they be able to benefit from them?

As you mentioned, some unique features you may provide in your spa business are services provided by multiple massage therapists at the same time. For instance, one therapist may provide reflexology treatment while a second therapist administers a scalp massage--a heavenly combination. Clients can also benefit from two massage therapists performing one synchronized, full-body Swedish massage using rhythmic hand and arm movements. Couples massages are another spa service in demand, allowing two people to experience the luxurious massage experience together. You might also offer group spa services, where an entire party can relax together with blissful chair massages.

Another way to set your spa apart from the traditional spa competition is to provide medical spa services, which include traditional, complementary, and alternative health practices and treatments. To operate as a medical spa, you'll need to hire a full-time, on-site, licensed health care professional to supervise the facility, as well as medical estheticians trained in biology, anatomy, and more.

Medical estheticians may be trained to perform medical massage therapy, such as craniosacral, myofascial, lymphatic, neuromuscular, and traeger massage; medical scalp treatment; nonsurgical cosmetic procedures such as laser hair removal and microdermabrasion; skin care management and alternative therapy for women experiencing menopause or hormonal dysfunction; and camouflage therapy, which provides cosmetic rehabilitation to those suffering from scarring and disfigurement.

It's wonderful that you'll be providing your community with much-needed spa and wellness services. We wish you all the best in your new spa business!

Robyn Tellefsen, Contributing Writer, The CollegeBound Network

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