It’s important to set yourself apart from other therapists, especially if you’re in an area with a high number of massage therapists. Here are some ideas on how to do this:
• Become an authority in your field. Writing articles in your local paper, on your blog, in newsletters or e-newsletters to clients will help to position yourself as an expert in massage therapy.
• Specialize in a unique modality. Offer a different technique that isn’t commonly offered in your area. Market it as a solution to your clients’ problems rather than the modality itself. Make sure it’s something you’re passionate about as well.
• Provide superior customer service. Add value to your sessions with add-ons like paraffin dips, hot towels, aromatherapy, etc.
• Make it simple for clients to contact and/or schedule an appointment with you. Offer online scheduling, phone, e-mail or text as ways to contact you.
• Create a signature treatment. Combine your two most popular services into one beautiful, completely original treatment.
• Focus on a niche market. Target your marketing efforts toward a certain clientele. Some examples include recovery massage for athletes, prenatal massage for pregnant women, etc.
• Offer unique business hours. Is the competition only offering daytime appointments? Set yourself apart by being available evenings, weekends or other convenient times that others don’t offer.
• Have a presence on the Web. It’s important to have a website for your massage business. Make it stand out from the competition by ensuring you have a beautiful design with interesting content. Consider including a blog filled with great health and self-care tips for clients. Not only will this be beneficial for clients, it will help boost your website’s search engine optimization, making it appear more prominently in organic Internet searches.
Cindy Iwlew is co-founder of Bodywork Buddy Massage Software, a complete online management solution for independent massage therapists that includes online scheduling. She continues to operate her own private massage practice of 13 years, and has been an associate instructor for Ashiatsu Oriental Bar Therapy since 2007. For more information, visit www.BodyworkBuddy.com.