Are you getting your clients to pre-book their next appointment before they walk out the door after a session? If not, you may be missing out on business. In “A Routine That’s Habit Forming,” Business coach Lauren Gartland offers that you can increase your revenue by 30 to 50 percent by consistently pre-booking 75 percent or more of your clients.

That kind of revenue opportunity is something you don’t want to miss. That’s why it’s important to have a plan in mind to ensure clients pre-book. Sometimes clients don’t understand they need a series of sessions. This is where education comes in. During a first session with new clients, talk about how many massage or skin care treatments will be necessary and at what intervals in order to achieve their goals, whether it’s pain management or skin repair and renewal. That way the client understands that they need to plan on a series of massages or skin care treatments to get the results they want, and so they should be receptive to pre-booking.

If you have a team, make sure that everyone understands the need to pre-book clients. If necessary, provide a script they can follow that addresses the various responses they might get from a client who is reluctant to pre-book. As an example, you don’t want to ask if you can book the next appointment. You’ll get far better results by asking “what’s a good day for your next appointment” or “I see you generally come in around mid-afternoon later in the week, would next Thursday at 2:00 work for your next appointment.” If a client says they are too busy to check their calendar, suggest penciling in a date and time so they are on the books and can change later if that doesn’t work.

Online booking software might also help boost boosting. If clients don’t want to take the time to rebook while they still are in your spa or massage practice, you can provide them with the convenience of booking online once they have a better handle on their schedule.

More ways to boost bookings

  • Send direct mail or email

    If clients haven’t booked in a while, send out a direct mail piece or email reminding them to book and encourage them by talking about new services if you have any or special retail offerings. You might want to incentive clients to book by offering special pricing on a massage or skin treatment if they book by a certain date.

  • Leverage social media

    Use your social media channels to encourage bookings. In a blog or on Facebook, talk about a trend in massage or point to research; discuss the value of certain skin treatments for seasonal skin care problems, highlight a new retail offering. Tweet out a message about a new offering. Include links to your website so followers can get more information and to call your spa or massage practice to make an appointment or book online.

  • Send a greeting

    Clients appreciate it when you remember a special day like a birthday or anniversary by sending a card along with a special offer. Also send cards – online or print – to clients on holidays. Consider others in addition to the major ones like New Year’s and Thanksgiving. Send a greeting on July 4 or Memorial Day or one of the holidays we celebrate.

Get your clients to pre-book as often as possible and keep in front of clients to keep your appointment calendar full.