Are Your Spa Employees Branded?
By Peggy Borgman President, Preston Wynne, Inc. | October 28, 2008
A guest enters your lobby, eyes agleam with anticipation. Your beautiful logo, carved into a spectacular slab of marble, is perfectly lit. Your signature aromatherapy essence is wafting into the air. Your signature music is playing in the background. Her every sense is cued for an incredible experience. After drinking in the exquisitely coordinated environment, she turns her gaze to the uniformed spa concierge at the counter... who studiously ignores her, picking at her cuticles, as she answers the phone with a bored-yet-hurried greeting.
"Be with you in a minute," chirps another concierge in the guest's general direction, as she stares at a keyboard and loudly chews a lurid-colored wad of gum.
"Do you have an appointment?" asks Concierge #1, hanging up the phone and finally making eye contact, with the thinnest of smiles. Her glittery eyeliner looks like it might have been left over from a previous night's rave.
"Uh, yes," stammers the startled guest, whose fantasy has abruptly ended. "I'm Mary Smith." "We have you down for the, um, Spa Safari," replies Glitter Girl, squinting at the monitor. "Have a seat and someone will take you down to the locker room in a minute."
Your brand has gone from platinum to lead in a matter of seconds. Those hours spent poring over proofs of the brochure, fine-tuning the photography? Wasted. The expensive media buy your company just made? Squandered. In fact, you've just committed the ultimate marketing sin: you've overpromised, and underdelivered.
How? You forgot the most important expression of your brand: your employees. Think of them as the final link in the chain, where your brand-literally-touches the customer. The most compelling marketing plans, the most persuasive copywriting, the most tantalizing images, are rendered not just worthless, but ludicrous, when your employees' behavior contradicts your brand message.