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Franchise Players: Jumping From a Food Franchise to a Spa Franchise

Scott Adams Massage Green Spa franchisee
Scott Adams
Image credit: Scott Adams

Franchise Players is Entrepreneur’s Q&A interview column that puts the spotlight on franchisees. If you're a franchisee with advice and tips to share,

The franchising industry is slowly but surely becoming more eco-friendly, as customers' demands for sustainable practices encourage franchises to go green. However, few franchises are as wholeheartedly dedicated to environmental responsibility as Massage Green Spa. It was Massage Green Spa's eco-friendly take on spa services that drew Scott Adams to the franchise. From sustainable building materials to preservative-free facial products, Massage Green Spa considers "Healthy Buildings, Healthy Bodies" a guiding motto. Here's what Adams has learned as a green franchisee.

Name: Scott Adams

Franchise owned: Massage Green Spa in Highlands Ranch, Colo.

How long have you owned a franchise?

We opened Jan. 3, 2014.

Related: Franchise Players: An Eco-Friendly Franchisee on Giving Back to His Community

Why franchising?

Franchising is a proven business model. I have been in the franchising industry for over 20 years, and I love that it is such a straight forward operation. With Massage Green Spa, I liked the low cost of entry and the up side of sales. With franchising, you’re never alone and I loved that the company has marketing materials and training support, all the while by being pretty financeable. The benefit of franchising is that you’re in business for yourself, but not by yourself.

What were you doing before you became a franchise owner?

Before becoming a Massage Green Spa area developer for Colorado and Utah, I was a franchise owner of primarily food concepts. I was attracted to Massage Green Spa’s concept because of the high quality services at affordable prices.

Why did you choose this particular franchise?

I loved the idea of owning a business with a green concept that is both socially and environmentally responsible. I felt that Massage Green Spa was on the cutting edge of the spa industry with a compelling price point and I wanted to be a part of it. We offer environmentally-friendly spa services using hypoallergenic lotions, essential oils and chemical- and preservative-free facial products in a green environment. All spa facilities are constructed from mostly sustainable building materials and utilize low consumptive lighting and high efficiency furnace and water heaters. 

Also, by making massage an affordable luxury, Massage Green Spa introduces health benefits into the fold of people who have never gotten a massage before.

How much would you estimate you spent before you were officially open for business?

$150,000 including the franchise fee, construction, training, equipment, building out the facility, etc.

Where did you get most of your advice/do most of your research?

Most of my research was done through talking to members of Massage Green Spa’s corporate team and the other franchisees in the system. I spoke with massage therapy schools in order to research where to hire from and the availability of massage therapists in the area.

I was looking for a business model with a lot more simplicity than the previous food concepts I had worked with. I chose MGS because I thought it was unique within the niche that it competes in. It brings affordable luxury to consumers and because the therapists’ hearts are dedicated towards building their own client base, the company thrives off of the passion to match the needs of the customer.

Related: Franchise Players: Helping the Earth Through Franchising

What were the most unexpected challenges of opening your franchise?

I didn’t have a lot of unexpected challenges.  

What advice do you have for individuals who want to own their own franchise?

It is very important to do your homework and talk to franchisees in the system. Ask them what types of marketing is working, and learn from the ones who are doing their best and getting the most exposure. Also, it is crucial that a franchisee hires the right kind of people. Massage Green Spa’s franchisees should also hire a key manager with a background in massage. It’s what really sold me on this company; Massage Green Spa teaches you how to run a business with massage therapists, not how to be an expert in massage therapy. I love that.

What’s next for you and your business?

Being the Area Developer for Colorado and Utah, 12 more franchise locations are under development with the plan for all of them to open within the next two years. The goal is 50 locations in 4-5 years. 

Related: Franchise Players: On Being the First Franchisee in a Young Industry

Kate Taylor

Written By

Kate Taylor is a reporter at Business Insider. She was previously a reporter at Entrepreneur. Get in touch with tips and feedback on Twitter at @Kate_H_Taylor.