Boost your business and customer satisfaction with free product samples
Chances are, you received free product samples while shopping at a grocery store, boutique, or garden center. These freebies are meant to give you a taste of an item in the hope that you will purchase the item in full size. Research shows this tactic works; a report by Sampling Effectiveness Advisors indicated that 73 percent of consumers were likely to buy a product after trying it.
What works for supermarkets can also work for your massage practice.
No risk + low cost
Providing customers with free product samples can be a good way to increase sales and retain your customers for more service.
Felicia Brown, LMBT, author, speaker, consultant and owner of A to Zen Massage, said MASSAGE review that samples are a great way to introduce new products or services to customers without risk to them and at a low cost to you.
âIt can inspire people to try something they would never have considered before and provides value to both the therapist and the client as well as the company. Many product manufacturers offer free or low cost sample programs [to therapists] to try something they would never have considered before, âsaid Brown.
Find the right time
Brown added that gifts of product samples could also complement specific treatment. For example, after a client’s first pain relief treatment, you could offer a sample of topical pain reliever, which would meet the client’s needs or preferences at that time.
Special events present another great opportunity to give away free product samples. âMy spa, A to Zen Massage, does this on our annual Guest Appreciation Day, as well as at local health fairs, and every year in February when we celebrate our anniversary,â said Brown. . âIn general, I like to plan sample promotions so that all customers who come during a certain period all get the sample if they want to. “
Nathan Nordstrom, director of massage therapy training for Hand & Stone Massage and Facial Spas, noted that during and after services are the most effective times to offer free product samples. But he agreed that participating and offering samples at local events, such as a 5K walk / run, could improve your practice’s exposure.
For example, Nordstrom recommended stapling free product samples onto flyers that highlight your practice or spa and location. Not only will potential customers receive a gift, they will conveniently have your business name and address.
However, Nordstrom warned that any giveaways should merge with the event. For example, providing samples of an analgesic cream at a wedding show would miss the mark. In this case, a product that softens the bride’s skin, such as a salt scrub, would be a more suitable free product sample choice. âThe product has to be relevant to the event. You want to add value to your practice, âhe said.
Know your why
Kamillya Hunter, director of business development for Spa Analytics, stressed that therapists should identify the reason why product samples are being distributed. âYou may think the product might improve the effects of massage. For therapists interested in retail, product sampling is a great way to introduce your clients to what you intend to sell, âsaid Hunter. “Or you can just give it away as a free gift to attract customers or show your appreciation to existing ones.”
Hunter emphasized that customers don’t just rely on a thing, like massage, for the well-being. âMany are looking for products with therapeutic and / or relaxing value. They trust their therapists to guide them in the right direction, âshe said. âCustomers also may not want to spend a lot of money on a large product that may or may not work for them. Sampling it first allows them to make a more informed decision.
Try before you buy
Hunter cautions that therapists should be made aware of the products they recommend. âI don’t think it’s a product that they personally use; However, they need to be well informed about the ingredients, benefits and possible side effects, if any, âshe said.
Las Vegas Postural Alignment Specialist Maria T. Jackson, BPS, MAH, LMT, PAS uses a two-pronged approach when providing free product samples. She first uses a product to determine how it works, which lends credibility to her advice. âI never share anything that I haven’t tried myself,â she said.
Jackson can also use the product during a massage to allow the client to experience it personally. Most importantly, she only recommends organic products.
Free product samples add value
Research shows that providing samples encourages future purchases and service upgrades, which helps increase revenue. Brown said, “It also leaves the client with a good impression of the therapist and the company, as the sampling adds value to their overall experience.”
During trainings, Nordstrom reminds therapists to ensure clients are well looked after, which includes maintaining a regular dialogue.
âThe customer needs to receive the right experience, the right services and the right products,â he said. âIf you’re not connected to the needs of your customers, you’re missing out on improvements that make customers more willing to engage. It affects your bottom line. More satisfied customers are more willing to come back.
About the Author
Phyllis Hanlon has written non-fiction articles and book reviews as well as human interest stories, profiles and award-winning essays. His areas of specialization include health and medicine, religion, education and business. She regularly delights in the joys of massage.