The "physical embodiment" is one area where a number of med spa owners have gone overboard (in my opinion).
Building out a beautiful facility with eight treatment rooms and a waiting room the size of a ballroom is waste of money if your advertising and marketing programs are unable to "fill the seats". It is true, however, that creating the right ambience and environment for your med spa will be a key factor in your likelihood of success. Whether you are starting with just a single room or building a stand alone med spa from the ground up, it is important that you create a spa-like atmosphere for your clinic.
An aesthetically-pleasing, spa-like setting will make it clear to your patients that your med spa does not treat sick people. It will be crystal clear from your decor and appointments that your facility provides elective services to help your patients improve their appearance. Your goal is to create an environment that is soothing and relaxing. Be sure that your facility makes patient comfort and pampering a priority. Your treatment rooms should not look or "feel" like medical exam rooms, and you should sound-proof your rooms to the best of your ability. The ambience and decor selected for your waiting room, consultation offices and bathrooms should also make it clear that this is not a "medical" office. Your spa-like environment will also have a positive effect on your staff and help make them more productive and happy to work in such a pleasant environment.
When designing your space, it is also a good idea to make sure all your rooms are multi-purpose. This will allow you greater flexibility in the future as you make continual minor adjustments to your menu of services. Be sure that when a prospect walks through your door she is immediately impressed and delighted with your facility. Just as with real estate in general, curb appeal and first impressions are critically important.
Pay close attention to every detail in your waiting room and front desk as these are your patients' first points of contact with your med spa. The first impression of your prospects at this stage of the process sets the stage for all the following points along the way. Be sure that an adequate amount of comfortable seating is readily available and the decor is striking. In addition, make sure that all your up-to-date marketing materials are on display and well organized-- conveying a consistent brand image. Rather than having a waiting room cluttered wit h newspapers and magazines, recognize that everyone in your lobby is a "captive audience". Your waiting room is the perfect opportunity to professionally indoctrinate all of your customers with your educational and marketing materials including point of purchase patient brochures, before and after photographs and other educational materials. Be sure to have educational DVD loops running continuously throughout the day explaining the services and procedures that are available at your med spa. Many med spas are able to incorporate an intimate, smaller waiting room separate from the lobby which is ideal for fostering a soothing, relaxing and educational environment. If you offer a dual medical/med spa facility try to keep the waiting rooms for sick patients vs. esthetic patients separate.
Your facility should facilitate your mantra that "customer service" is king. The treatment rooms should also be clean, neat and beautiful. Tranquility, privacy and quiet should be emphasized (I recently saw a new med spa under construction in Manila with an "open ceiling" plan which makes privacy and quiet in the treatment rooms an impossibility). Strive to keep your waiting times to a bare minimum, and work on an action plan to deal with tardy customers without causing ill will. Water, healthy teas, etc. should be available at all times. Keeping an emphasis on aesthetics, privacy, comfort and tranquility will help you attract and maintain the desired patient base for success.