As massage therapists, it is easy to think the only reason clients come to us is the amazing hands-on skills we possess. But the truth is, anything that touches a client—from the moment they scroll through your Instagram posts until they drive out of your parking lot—may have an impact on how they feel about you as a professional as well as the services you provide. This also affects their decision to do business with you, or not.
Although this article describes many facets of the customer experience journey to and from your table, it is by no means complete. It’s up to each of us to examine the various ways we impact and connect with our clients through our practices. Each of these touches should be part of your marketing efforts. Each impression you make on a client—whether positive or negative—before, during and after a visit influences their decision to work with you (or not).
I challenge you to imagine experiencing each part of your business as a potential client would and make any adjustments needed to make those encounters positive.
1. Branding & Messaging
Your website, social media and online presence: Being online is affordable, effective and where most if not all of your clients spend their time. A few keys to make your digital doorways open and appealing:
Use professional, consistent branding and messaging. Variety is good in terms of images and posts, but things like your logo, tagline and mission should not change day-to-day.
Have up-to-date posts, pictures and promotions; in other words, show you are open, active and attentive to detail. Offer easy-to-access online scheduling or gift certificate sales. Be easy to do business with.
Provide a clear explanation of sanitation and safety procedures—COVID-19—need I say more?
Exterior appearance: Depending on your setup, you may have limitations on the look and feel of your building or business. However, even if you “just work there” you can easily upgrade the feel. Keep the area by your door free of trash and debris. Sweep your sidewalk or put out a friendly welcome mat. Plant colorful flowers or hang a colorful flag.
2. Welcoming & Informing
Clients appreciate feeling like you’ve made them a priority for being ready for them and making them feel special. Have all the supplies, tools and paperwork set up before they arrive so they feel like an A-lister instead of an afterthought.
In terms of clear communication and procedures, taking all the guesswork out puts others at ease and helps newbies relax before, during and after every session. This creates a better experience for everyone.
Confirm the service and the client’s goals for receiving service, because tarting off on the same page will lead to the best results.
3. Connecting & Rebooking
After you’ve melted away the stress and tension your client walked in with, you want to keep them in the relaxation zone by having a seamless checkout and rebooking process. Get your technology in order, however needed, to process credit and debit cards, redeem gift cards or make change for large bills or tips.
To support rebooking, have a treatment plan in place that includes asking every client to rebook. If you feel uncomfortable with this, consider how clients might negatively perceive not being invited back to work with you again.
Stay in touch. Following up with clients after you see them will set you apart from many other therapists. Whether you call, text or email to see if they have issues or questions after the session, send a thank-you note in appreciation for their business. Or touch base with an “it’s been a while” reminder or discount. All of these types of communication will give your clients one more reason to think of you when they or someone in their life needs your services.
About the Author
Felicia Brown, LMBT, is a business, marketing and life coach—as well as a recovering workaholic and a survivor of multiple burnouts. She is a regular contributor to MASSAGE Magazine; read the article, “This is what the Highest-Earning Massage Therapists Have in Common,” featuring Brown, on massagemag.com. Download her free e-book, “Do ONE Thing,” on spalutions.com.