As a massage therapist, you need to get your name out there not only to get clients but also to get the clients that you want to work with. You may enjoy working with pregnant women or athletes for examples. If you’re going to attract more of that client, you need to use massage therapy marketing in a way that is attractive to that target market. When you have a waiting list of clients, and your reviews are all amazing, it increases your word of mouth, and allows you to charge more per hour for your work. The key to this all is massage therapy marketing. The problem with massage therapy marketing is that what they teach you in school is just not enough to keep up with today’s digital world.
Massage Therapy Marketing Principle #1- Don’t Just Rely on Word of Mouth
The number one reason that massage therapists don’t work at marketing themselves is that they believe that word of mouth is the only way. Now let’s make this clear, word of mouth is the best way, but it is not the only way. The points we talk about in this massage therapy-marketing guide are all meant to fuel your word of mouth. If you generate word of mouth business now, we want to make sure you are producing even more after this.
The problem with word of mouth is that it is very reactive. When you depend on it, it means you sit back and pray that all the people you treat will tell their friends about you. The question is what if the people you treat forget or are too busy too and you are not getting more clients? Most massage therapists have no answer for this question.
Massage Therapy Marketing Principle #2 – Define Your Customer
Who do you want to walk into your office? You can’t say, everyone, because you can’t market your business to everyone. You need to define precisely whom it is that you want to come in. The better you understand that customer, the easier it will be to creating material that attracts them.
Let’s go back to our example we used before with pregnant women and athletes. These two crowds are not the same at all. They are going through different things, and they have very different goals at the end of the day.
If you say I am open to getting any customer, you will attract neither. Athletes are looking for people who LOVE working with athletes, and they have particular needs for therapy. They often will need someone who can help make an injury feel better for an upcoming event or game.
The pregnant women, on the other hand, they are going through a lot emotionally. They can’t even lay on the stomach or their back, so they need to be taken care of in a specific way, and they need to work with someone who knows and understands all of this.
When you define your target market everything you put out can be attractive to that subset of person. For example, if you are using social media or creating blog posts for athletes, you can create content related to sports nutrition and hydration. Athletes will enjoy this content because it will also help them improve your massages.
Important Note – The number one mistake made in marketing is not having a clear idea of who your customer is. People start businesses wanting to reach the masses. The problem is that the masses can only be reached by starting out with a particular target customer. The book Crossing the Chasm does a great job of explaining this.
Massage Therapy Marketing Principle #3 – Dominate Social
Reading principle #3 means you are saying, “I know, I am already doing that or trying” or you are saying “I hate social media, I don’t want to put myself out there.” Now here is the thing, I don’t think you have to dominate every social channel and as one person you probably can’t, but you do need to at least be on them.
The Social Channels Include
- Kho Health
- Google +
There are a few reasons you want even a basic presence on as many of these channels as you can. The first is because many people start their search on these social channels.
When you are looking for something, you may start with Google. Some people start that search by looking on YouTube for a video. YouTube is the number two search engine in the world believe it or not. Some people are addicted to Instagram, so they are not going to leave to learn about you, they are just going to look for you on Instagram. When they look, and they can’t find you it is like you don’t even exist in their world.
Choosing the right social networks to be on stem back to which social networks your target market spends the most time. If you were looking for pregnant ladies, a great place to start would be Facebook and Pinterest. If you are looking for athletes, Kho Health and Snapchat may be your best bet. This points right back to why knowing your target market is so important. It will help you decide which social channel should take the most of your resources.
How to Make Social Media Work For You as A Massage Therapist
The best place to start is to ask your current customers. If you don’t have any customers yet ask the people who you want to be your existing customers. Talk with them more and understand how they think and what they are going through. The better of a job you do this, the easier it will be to post things on social media because you will post what they are looking for.
It also gets you into the mindset of basing all of your choices off of your customers. Instead of buying new tables because you think they are better, ask a customer to try one out and let you know what they like. Don’t just assume you know, lead with the customer’s needs and you can never go wrong.
Massage Therapy Marketing Principle #4 – Don’t Just Have a Website Use it and Take Pride In It
A lot of people say they have a website. Not many people use their website though. A site is a living and breathing organism. It is not just meant to sit there in cyberspace with hopes that someone magically lands on it and pays you money.
Your website is your digital office. Would you go to a business that looked like no one was home? So why have a website that seems like it was from 1998 and like no one is home? It does not make a sense.
When building the healthcare provider database for Kho Health, we came across a lot of really bad websites. It was really sad, and we felt the need to have a funeral for some of these sites because they were DEAD. IF they were not dead, they were definitely on the way to the hospice. Don’t let that be you, because guaranteed you are losing business.
After people have looked someone up to see what they can find on social, they almost always are going to your website to check pricing. If they get there and it looks dead, they will leave right away without even thinking twice.
How to Bring Your Website Alive
The first thing you can do is to make it look professional and like it was made recently. If you think people can’t tell an old website when they see one you are fooling yourself.
Simple Tips to Improve Website
- Get it designed so that the colors fit together
- Have a professional logo
- Post-professional pictures of yourself
- Don’t use stock photos as if you are unable to take pictures of yourself
- Make it easy to contact you
- Put links to your social channels
- Capture Emails
- Build a marketing funnel
- Regularly update your site with blog posts
The point above that we are going to dig into more is the blog posting. A lot of people don’t understand the value of blog posting at all. The reason you want to blog is that it helps to bring your site alive because it is always updating and changing.
The other reason this is good is that that monster company named Google loves sites that update regularly. If you want your site to show up better ranked and on page 1 of results, you need to understand Search Engine Optimization (SEO). SEO consists of all of the tactics you can use to improve on Google searches.
Tips to Improve SEO
- If you have a WordPress site download Yoast SEO
- Create as much blog content as possible
- Do keyword research to discover what the most popular searches are with the least amount of competition for those keywords.
- Share content on social media
- Make sure you link content to excellent outbound links
- Get other sites to link back to your content (backlinks)
Massage Therapy Marketing Principle #5 – Improve Your Kho Number
Kho Health is the complete database for sports medicine providers. If you want to work with athletes at all as a massage therapist, then you had better be on their database. Kho Health ranks healthcare providers based off of four things:
- Ratings and Reviews
- Engagement with the community
- Content creation
- Insurances accepted
Kho Health is always transparent about what you can do to improve your Kho Number. If the metrics above change, you will know about it.
You want to make sure you have a game plan for all of these things. Actively asking the people, you work with t write you honest reviews will go a long way. The great thing about getting honest reviews is that it can help you to identify some places that you are struggling.
Engagement with the community means that when people ask questions or comment you respond to them. It also means that you are supporting other healthcare providers. Kho is putting the social back in social media. It is not just about pushing out the things you care about.
The last part of your Kho number is insurances accepted. Now, this is a small part of the equation, but it is an important one nonetheless. A lot of people search for healthcare providers based off of their insurance. The more insurance companies you accept, the better for the people looking for help. As a massage therapist, it may be tough to do this, but it will be worth it to improve you Kho number.
Massage Therapy Marketing Principal #6 – Brand Brand Brand
A lot of massage therapists don’t take advantage of their branding and opportunities to further extend the brand. Every person that lies on your table is a possible extension of your brand.
- Give them a sticker and encourage them to put it on their computers
- Give them a t-shirt so they can be a walking billboard
- Create a customer advisory board, so people feel like they are a part of what you are doing
- Everywhere that you go should provide an opportunity for someone to see or ask about your brand
There is not a lot of branding for a healthcare provider. You want to build trust and be top of mind. If you can do those two things, you will get more businesses. It is much harder to do then you only have one of those two things.
Massage Therapy Marketing Principle #7 – Team Work Will Make The Dream Work
There is a lot of Massage Therapy Marketing, and because of that a lot of people choose not to do it altogether. It is easier to hide behind the walls of the slow word of mouth marketing than it is to be uncomfortable and learn how to do this correctly.
Spend some time learning how to do everything on your own. The reason it is good to do it on your own is so that you understand what it takes to do it well. When you know what it takes to do a job well, you can hire out for it a lot better. There are way too many people whom just outsource they’re marketing blindly, and they have no idea what they are even paying for.
The reality is that you are massage therapists, not a full-time marketer. Add a full-time marketer to your team can bring your business to new heights. The truth is most will never do it because the day they don’t have the money, but you will never reach new heights until you finally do it. There is just too much work and not enough time for you to do it all.
Massage Therapy Marketing Principle #8 – Fuel Your Word of Mouth
As I said before, this article is not getting rid of word of mouth marketing. It is adding fuel to the WOM fire. Instead of just waiting for people to talk about you, you are finding ways to create more for them to talk about. You are finding ways to be found where they are looking, and you are making it easier for them to trust you and give up their money.
By fueling your word of mouth, you never have to worry about it slowing down because you will have so many tools and ways that you can use to earn more business.
Chiropractor Marketing is Getting People to:
- Know You
- Like You
- Trust You
You need all three to be in full swing to have an awesome marketing channel. The better you do here, the less you will have to spend on Facebook ads and other things that have probably frustrated you in the past. Fueling large amounts of work of mouth today requires more than just providing good massages. You have to take advantage of the Internet and digital tools where people spend a lot of their time today.