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For many of you, turning your new clients into existing clients and keeping them coming back regularly will be one of your top priorities. But how do we go about achieving this, other than providing a spectacular service and customer experience, of course? The key to this could be right under your very nose – all you have to do is know how to unlock your potential.

One of the best ways to keep your clients coming back again and again is to establish ‘long-term thinking’ – this is particularly true for facials, injectables, any skin-related appointments really. An effective way to establish long-term thinking with your clients is to start creating treatment plans, and we mean the full shebang – think comprehensive in-clinic and homecare advice for a period of three to six months. This type of care plan will really set the tone for your clients – they will know that they aren’t just a box-tick: you are consciously and considerably thinking about what their skin is doing, what is going to be best for them, and that you are paying attention to their priorities. It also demonstrates accountability, not just for you, but for the clients. They will know that you take them seriously (they have written proof of what you have recommended for them!) and you will have it in writing the products and ingredients they need to be on for best results.

Here are a few handy tips when it comes to getting your comprehensive treatment plans right:

Establish the timeframe. It’s up to practitioners and clinics to decide how many weeks or months they want their treatment plans to run for, but if you are offering more invasive treatments like needling or laser, we recommend at least six months, since the process of forming new collagen and elastin formation can be quite a lengthy one. Draw up a table, labeling each month, with a professional treatment section and a homecare section for each month. Jot down in each section the treatments/products you would recommend in an ideal world, based on the scenario that your treatments work out exactly as planned. Of course this may not happen every time, but at least you have the framework in place and the client has goals to work towards.

Set realistic expectations. Include the time it will take to generate best results for each component you wish to carry out. For example, perhaps you want to carry out a Hydrafacial on your client first – write down that they can see results within 1-2 weeks, however, if you wish to perform needling next, let them know their best results will often appear at about 8 weeks.

Take your client’s preferences into consideration when establishing the order of treatments. Remember, your client’s primary concern may not be the same one as we would have guessed. We recommend starting your treatment plan by asking your client to name their primary skin concerns and number them in order of highest to lowest priority. Then, you can ascertain which one to treat first and which treatment/s lends itself to those concerns.

Incorporate homecare, not just treatments: We don’t need to explain to you the importance of homecare in achieving your clients’ desired outcomes. However, when putting product recommendations down alongside treatment recommendations, your clients may start to realise the magnitude of their homecare responsibilities, and the why behind your product recommendations. Link them together, explain the role of each component of your plan. An easy example – your client’s primary concern is pigmentation. So your first treatment recommendation will be your laser pigmentation treatment. Under your homecare section, you list your most effective pigment blocking serum and sunscreen, explaining to the client that these are imperative and without them, their pigment will quickly return and undo all of your good work and render their investment a complete waste.

Consider prepping. In the aforementioned laser example, if this is the treatment you wish to carry out first, let’s say your client is not currently prepped on any active skincare. You’ll need to add this to their homecare section at least a month prior, particularly for a darker skin type, explaining the necessity of prepping and the adverse reactions that can occur without it. You will also need to consider any treatments they wish to have afterward. For example, if they really want filler or toxin done prior to a special occasion, which happens in less than 3 weeks, this would be far from ideal. They should wait at least 2-4 weeks after their laser, even if mild and non-ablative, and then will also need time for their injectables to settle before their event. Be sure to ask these questions before attempting your treatment plan. Also factor in any down-time, and be sure to ask if they have any special occasions coming up in the next 6 months that you would need to plan around.

These pieces of the puzzle will, in most cases, quickly and easily fall into place and make your comprehensive treatment plans fairly simple – all you need to do is consider the before-care, after-care, and any relevant downtime. Another key to remember is to be flexible in your plans, and to tell your clients to do the same. Nobody is perfect, and perhaps a treatment you have recommended did not quite provide the outcome you were both hoping for. Perhaps they didn’t follow their homecare protocol and it puts you behind schedule. Whatever the case, if you head into the planning process telling your clients that their skin is a long-term journey, not a short-term destination, you’re likely to achieve amazing results and glowing happy clients!