Before Christmas we were approached by Groupon, a company who team up with local businesses to offer greatly discounted products and services on the basis that a large number will be purchased. The company have a database of 130,000 people in Bristol alone who subscribe to the Groupon daily deal newsletter.
We sat and had a cuppa and chat with the sales executive and decided that we’d offer an hour’s sports massage or spinal rehabilitation consultation for £14 instead of £40. We’ve only been open 2 years and as we still have people coming in, saying ‘I didn’t know you were here’ we figured it can only be a good thing getting our name out to 130,000 people.
The deal went out on Friday 21st January. I logged on when I got up that morning, at about 7am and already 20-odd were sold. We watched as the number rose steadily throughout the day and the phone calls started trickling in. By the end of the day, 271 had been bought and, as the deal was on as an ‘extra’ deal for the next 2 days, by Sunday evening we had a grand total of 430 new customers. To say we were overwhelmed would be an understatement.
Last week was manic. We were flooded with phone calls, emails and the answering service we use when we’re not able to answer the phone were pinging emails to us every 5 minutes with details of another caller who wanted to book in.
I’d say out of the 70 or so people we’ve spoken to so far, about 95% want the sports massage as opposed to spinal rehab consultation, perhaps the appeal of a deep, de-stressing treatment is greater this time of year when stress levels are pretty critical.
The one challenge we’re facing is that many people want evening appointments. We need to keep our commitment to our existing clients and have a certain number of evening slots available for them so we currently have a few weeks waiting time for after work treatments. We have decided to open the studio again on a Saturday, something we did early last year until the demand for weekend appointments tailed off. We will stay open on a Saturday as long as we have the demand for it. It seems a good solution for those who work away for the week or who don’t work near us.
So, just over a week in and between Carolyn, Andy and myself we’ve seen 20 people so far. It’s lovely meeting so many new people and of the 20, 2 have already rebooked for a second massage and one has booked a 12-week spinal rehab programme. Proof, perhaps, that it will be a few months of hard work but there are plenty of people out there who we can help and this deal has been a great way to introduce us to some lovely new clients.