TLC Medispa Implements Major Improvements to Combat Daily Deal Site Impact and Slow Economy

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With a sluggish economy and daily deal sites continuing to negatively impact the spa industry, medical spa TLC Medispa is making changes. Their newly renovated office space, new services, new equipment and a new brand identity add real value to consumers’ experience and help reset industry pricing damaged by daily deal promotions.

"At TLC Medispa we are changing our thinking and efforts to attract clients for whom the spa lifestyle is an important part of their lives, instead of those who are only interested because they are getting a deal."

TLC Medispa has served the Northern Virginia area with safe and effective laser services including laser hair removal, spider vein treatments and photofacials for the past 9 years, and was one of the first spas to participate in daily deal site promotions. Initially beneficial to the Tysons Corner medical spa, daily deal promotions ultimately had a far-reaching, negative impact on the spa industry as a whole. Helping to lead an industry-wide recovery, TLC Medispa has made significant, positive changes to counter this effect. These include a new brand identity and website, new services including facials and chemical peels, new laser hair removal equipment and a more upscale atmosphere.

While daily deal promotions may seem like old news, their negative effects on the spa industry continue today. A 2011 Harvard/BU study (J. Byers, M. Mitzenmacher and G. Zervas) found that daily deal promotions have an adverse impact on reputation as measured by Yelp ratings. The study indicates that offering daily deal promotions, "...puts a merchant's reputation at risk. The audience being reached may be more critical than their typical audience or have a more tenuous fit with the merchant." Another Boston University study showed that an increase of one star on a Yelp rating typically increased the revenue of the business by 9 percent. Shepard, owner of TLC Medispa, says “We have found this to be true. Since we began running daily deal promotions, although we initially saw increased traffic, our online reputation suffered and in turn, we began to see a decline in profitability. This is why we decided to rethink our brand, what we are offering, and to whom.”

Even more troubling is the pricing impact that daily deal sites have inflicted on the industry. “I’m not sure that any other industry was hit as hard by the daily deal phenomenon,” states Shepard. She continues: “Consumers have adjusted their expectations to the steeply-discounted prices. They tell us they will go elsewhere if we don’t match a competitor’s daily deal promotion. This doesn’t happen in most other businesses, like restaurants for example. It has forced most spas to cut their prices in half just to keep their clients. It’s rooted in both the recession and the daily deal phenomenon.”

To combat these effects, TLC Medispa has implemented a plan to add value to their offerings so that clients feel comfortable purchasing services at fair prices. Over the past year, TLC has revealed an office remodel that provides a more upscale, comfortable environment for their clients. Very recently, the medical spa unveiled a new brand identity including a logo and user-friendly website: They have added new services including facials, chemical peels, and brow and lash services to more fully meet their clients’ needs. They have also designated an updated treatment room for these services. TLC has added a new laser that offers less pain and more speed- a rare technology that clients love. Finally, TLC has amped up their customer service with special touches like refreshments, an online booking system, and expanded hours. TLC Medispa’s owner says “Participating in daily deal promotions and price cutting devalues the services you offer. We feel these changes are necessary in order to differentiate ourselves based on something other than the cheapest price.”

Finally, TLC has stopped running deals through daily deal sites. Shepard says that, “If the spa industry is to regain its footing, together we all have to stop devaluing what we offer and stop sharing our revenue with various daily deal companies. At TLC Medispa we are changing our thinking and efforts to attract clients for whom the spa lifestyle is an important part of their lives, instead of those who are only interested because they are getting a deal. This will result in a more symbiotic relationship with our clients and happier customers overall.”

TLC Medispa provides safe and effective laser hair removal and other laser treatments to the Northern Virginia area. They are now offering a truly enhanced medical spa experience, adding value for their clientele and helping to reset consumer ideas of the spa industry and its pricing structure.

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Jennifer Shepard
TLC Medispa
+1 (703)356-3636
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