massage business success

Massage therapists often feel alone when it comes to setting themselves up for massage business success when first starting out

When bodyworkers first start out, we typically feel so alone. It’s the survival-of-the-fittest mindset that holds us back and hinders our true potential.

We often have no clue where and how to start building our massage business and often turn to random people online to give us vague, quick answers—when in truth, they know nothing about our true business goals and endeavors.

It can be frustrating, defeating, and lead to spinning around in circles and burnout if you just wing it without a plan in place and goals written down. 

I have been successfully running a day spa for a decade. I’ve learned quite a lot during the roller coaster ride of being a business owner. I’ve had my fair share of challenges and struggles and have made possibly every mistake a spa owner can make. I have learned the hard way from those lessons, and I have a passion for helping other bodyworkers succeed in this industry.

I want to share three actions you can do right now to improve your business:

1. Delegate

You know the saying, “If you want it done right, do it yourself?” No. If you want it done right, and done right the first time, hire an expert in that subject, because they will do it better than what you’re capable of. I’ve been in the “But I need to save money,” do-it-myself mindset, and it ends up being costlier in time and money to have to fix a problem down the road.

After all, we expect our clients to respect our expertise — so why not trust another expert in their field of genius? In the end, you get what you pay for, even if what you get is countless hours of your life back. Wouldn’t you rather have more time with your family, for creativity, and to improve your overall health by delegating out mundane tasks that someone else can do for you? Time is valuable. 

2. Collaborate

Collaborating with like-minded professionals will nurture your strengths while improving upon your weaknesses. You will learn new techniques, discover fresh ideas, improve your business strategies, save time and money, provide high-quality customer service and see things from a new perspective.

You can find collaborators everywhere. They are colleagues in your continuing education classes, local business owners, networking groups, nonprofit organizations, bloggers and Facebook groups.

For example, I own a day spa in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. I reached out to a local business with a similar name and clientele. We collaborated together and did a cross-promotion via Facebook live for each other’s specialty services. Within three days, we already had over 6,000 local views. I have also partnered with local publications to run giveaways online, leading to a brand-new email list of over 3,500 people within my target market.

Helping other people reach their goals will not hinder your own. Clients also want you to reach your goals, so don’t be shy about asking them to leave you a review online. Just one review can bring in a dozen clients. The answer is always no until you ask. 

3. (Invest)igate

To succeed in massage, you must invest in high-quality continuing education. This doesn’t mean taking whatever random classes your state will approve just for the sake of getting your license renewed. Take classes that offer real education and fuel your soul.

Most of the modalities I have certificates or certifications in aren’t even approved in my state as continuing education. That doesn’t mean I can’t perform them; it just means I have to make sure I get my state minimum for license renewal along with going above and beyond what other therapists tend to do.

Seek out courses that will provide value to your practice because very few, if any, other massage therapists in your area have earned a certificate or certification in those particular techniques.

All of a sudden, taking a class that no one else in your area specializes in doesn’t seem so expensive when your investment will be quadrupled within a month. 

I am staying ahead of the curve and educating myself in what’s best for my clients, not boxing myself in within the state minimum. I’ve also invested a lot of time and money into attending conventions and conferences and business-coaching sessions. Working with industry mentors will improve your business strategies and mindset tremendously, leading to more financial and personal success.

Let others help you reach your goals. Dare to be different. Invest in yourself.  Rebecca Brumfield runs Badass Bodyworkers, a business that creates a thriving, empowering and supportive community of people who nourish and encourage each other to be total badasses and super rockstars in their healing abilities. She has been in the spa industry since 2008. Her articles for MASSAGE Magazine include “You Can Use Social Media Influencers to Get More Massage Clients” and “Free Massage is Only One Way of Giving Back to Your Community.”