From the MASSAGE Magazine article, “Guest Editorial: Beyond Technique: Business Success,” by Kathryn Watson, in the May 2010 issue. Article summary: You went to a good school and you spent a lot of money learning to become an excellent massage therapist. You know you are good at what you do and you love giving massage—so where are the clients? Getting clients to come to you doesn’t just happen because you are good. If you are just getting started, here are a few things you need to know.

by Paul Lewis

I know one person who got more than 300 massage clients in the first seven months of his practice, after using the following technique.

You will make a list of goals you want to achieve. Then under each goal, list some questions that will blossom into objectives and result in implementation plans for attracting clients and getting referrals. 

1. Make a list of questions and then expand and answer each of them. By doing this, you will able to see where your strengths are, and a realistic view of what you can afford in the short term—and most of all, the answers will indicate which direction and activities you should do to achieve your goals.

2. For example, if you are just starting out, your list of questions may be similar to the following: “What marketable skills do I have?” Then list all of your skills, likes and dislikes, regardless of whether you think they are related to health care or not.

You will be surprised at the amount of transferable skills you have. If you are familiar with computers, for example, this skill can be applied to creating your communication correspondence with potential customers. If one of your hobbies includes running or baseball, you are now familiar with the injuries and required movements in order to do that sport. This knowledge will also aid in your marketing process. 

3. Here are additional sample questions:

• Which target market would I like to work with?

• What type of treatments am I going to offer?

• Would I like to work for myself, for someone else, with a partner or a combination?

• What equipment will I need?

• How am I going to contact my target market?

• What available resources do I have to reach the target market?

• How far am I prepared to travel to work?

4. Once you have answers to your questions, you are better prepared to create your road map to success.

Paul Lewis is a registered massage therapist, fitness instructor and reflexologist, changing the world one treatment at time. For more information and to learn more about his seated-massage DVD, visit www.paullewis.ca.

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