To complement the MASSAGE Magazine article, “Market with Personality: In Person and Online,” by Greg Hurd and Allissa Haines, in the October 2013 issue. Article summary: Massage is a versatile art. There are many marketing tools and types of materials you can use to build your practice—but beyond your flyers, newsletters and ads, what you say about your practice, and where you say it, can be one of the most effective tools in your business tool kit.
Freestyle Massage & Marketing is about combining excellent communication skills, the techniques to perform massage anywhere, and a foundation of marketing to support your growing business. Here are six steps to implementing this style of marketing.
1. Know how you typically seize or demolish opportunities to talk about massage.
Are you better in quiet, one-on-one interactions, or do you prefer to interact in a group?
2. Create and practice scripts for the types of situations that make you uncomfortable.
For example, “You’re still having regular migraines? Sometimes massage can help with migraines, and I would be happy to see you at my office. Here’s my card. You can book online at the website when you’re ready.”
3. Get familiar with hands-on techniques that don’t require equipment—other than your hands, of course.
Passive and active movement, trigger-point therapy, myofascial work and stretching are all styles that don’t need lubricant, towels or fancy tools. A few quick YouTube searches for instructional videos will get you thinking about creative techniques to try.
4. Lay a solid foundation of marketing.
Have an easy-to-navigate website packed with blog posts about the most common questions you receive from clients and conditions you see most often. When you talk to someone who could benefit from that information, pull out your smartphone and e-mail her the link to the post, right on the spot.
5. Create a system for getting an e-mail address
And permission to use it. And adding it to your newsletter list.
6. It takes practice.
Spend some time thinking about the advocacy opportunities in your day-to-day life, and take the opportunity to market your massage practice in the moment, one potential client at a time.
Greg Hurd is director of career development and outreach at Bancroft School of Massage Therapy (www.bancroftsmt.com) in Worcester, Massachusetts. Allissa Haines is a massage therapist with a private practice in Plainville, Massachusetts. She creates marketing and business resources for massage therapists at www.writingabluestreak.com.