The spa industry is a $250-billion global business and the largest overall employer of massage therapists. Consistently, spa-goers choose massage as their favorite spa therapy.

Today the International Spa Association (ISPA) released its 2010 Trend Watch report, which pinpoints spa trends for the coming year. Among them:

Social media has evolved into an effective means for clients to book or cancel spa appointments. “Ad-Ology research shows that 57 percent of 18 to 24 year olds and 48.5 percent of 25 to 34 year olds say social media influenced their choice of a hair salon or day spa,” ISPA’s report noted.

Customer service has gone up a notch at spas, to create “a customized experience for the guest,” the reported noted. “In fact, 87 percent of ISPA member spas are utilizing customer feedback mechanisms to ensure they’re exceeding consumers’ needs, and, 48 percent of ISPA member spas have implemented customer loyalty programs, allowing them to offer discounts or rewards while incentivizing frequent visits to the spa.”

Spa sampling menus give clients the opportunity to try out techniques before committing to a full session.

Preventive care, the spa way, means learning to manage stress with treatments like massage, acupuncture and meditation.

Spa partnerships allow spas to develop relationships with established franchises, hotels and local businesses. Recent pairings like Murad Inc. and Massage Envy will allow consumers to enjoy the benefits of a total spa experience for an affordable price. Forty-six percent of ISPA day spa members partner with local businesses to incorporate spa into their workplace.

Cell phone applications make spa-ing easier than ever with the convenience of scheduling appointments from a cell phone.

Giving back, by spas that offer promotions and free services to people who serve the community—such as teachers, hospice workers and military personnel—raises a spa’s image while doing good.

The millennials, people born between 1980 and 1995, are a generation that outnumbers the baby boomers, and they are flocking to the spa.

Simplified spa menus mean no-frills treatments that offer a return on investment. “The [number-one] spa treatment that people seek out world wide is massage because of its healing and stress-reducing benefits,” the ISPA report noted.

Beauty rest means taking time—even at the spa—to catch some Zs. You can actually book time to sleep at the spa or stay after a treatment to nap when you’re feeling relaxed.

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