'Better, Cheaper, Faster' refers to day spas' drive to improve quality to compete in an increasingly difficult business environment while conforming to the needs of the demanding, time-starved spa-goers of the future. From more personalized service, to serious medi-spa treatments with proven results, to artistic, 'feng-shuied' design, to convenient mini-services that satisfy clients on the go, spas are become more plentiful, more specialized, and are attracting stronger operators and marketers.

To grow the market of spa-goers, our industry must address the issue of affordability. Other related wellness industries struggle with this issue. For example, Whole Foods markets-targeting a new generation interested in healthy, organic food-is trying to overcome their expensive persona (the pricey health food store's nickname with Gen Y'ers is 'Whole Paycheck.') 'We need to balance our pricing along with the growth of the market,' says Erica Miller, author of Day Spa Operations and Day Spa Techniques. Miller predicts day spas will soon be segmented like restaurants (quick-service, midscale, upscale casual, fine dining, etc.)

A natural evolution is driving day spas to become 'better, cheaper, and faster'. Competition is heating up. Consumers have much more choice, and very soon we may outstrip demand - There may be too many spas chasing too few customers. There is widespread consensus in the spa industry that clients are more educated than ever. And an educated client is a demanding client. But creating a superior guest experience for inside the spa is only half the job for managers-day spas are increasingly finding the need to come up with creative ways to get people in the door in the first place.

'The past few years, it was like shooting fish in a barrel-you didn't really need to do a good job of marketing to get clients, because they just came in and spent their money,' says SpaTrade expert Peggy Wynne Borgman, owner and spa director of Preston Wynne Spa. 'Now, it's different - money's tighter, and people's spending habits are changing, and you MUST do an excellent job of marketing if you're going to survive.'

To learn more about this trend and what spa industry leaders are doing to exploit it, read SpaTrade's new Path to Profitability for Day Spas report. Declared a 'real service to the entire spa industry' by Susie Ellis of Spa Finder, and 'without a doubt the best source of accurate information available on the spa industry' by Marian Urban, founder of the Medical Spa Conference, the new report delivers practical, tactical information on how to respond to the top seven spa industry trends for 2003 and beyond. It also features 43 'Tactics from the Trenches' currently in use at some of the best day spas in the United States. Learn from the experts, and see your
spa business grow!