How Massage Therapists Use Online Marketing

How Massage Therapists Can Use Online Marketing to Build Their Practice

Last week I had a lovely conversation with Savanna Bell from My Massage World. The topic was about online marketing for Massage Therapists. The conversation flowed from what platform to use, as well as how to reduce overwhelm when using online marketing to promote your practice.

You can view the conversation here. Please comment below about what your experience with online marketing has been.

 

Posted: December 8, 2018 By: Comment: 0
Massage Prices- How to Set Them

How My Massage Therapist Doubled Her Rates In 60 Minutes

What you are about to read is a true story. After four sessions with my Massage Therapist, Sophia, I still didn’t know what her massage prices were!

I have a new Massage Therapist. Sophia is her name and at the time this article was published, I’ve had four sessions with her. She’s really good. For me, her strengths are how she facilitates client relaxation and letting go. She also does great neck work! I call her my “Scalenes Whisperer”.

Sophia is a young Massage Therapist. She has been in practice for a little over a year. She has a powerful story about why she got into Massage Therapy but her marketing could use some help.

I remember asking her what her massage prices were after the first session. Her response utterly confused me. She said $110 for our 90 minute session but since I came from a referral it was $90. Before I said okay, she chimed back in again and said she wants clients to get regular bodywork so if I schedule two sessions in a month, my massage that day would cost $75.

If you don’t find that confusing, think of it this way- your client is about to pay you $110 for a good 90 minute session but then after a few minutes and some conversation you’re now asking the client to pay $75. Your client has no idea why to price keeps going down.

I looked at Sophia and said, “Hey, you have to take care of yourself. How can you afford to eat when you have such low massage prices?” She looked at me, smiled in an uncomfortable way, and then deflected the conversation to something about me drinking more water.

That was the moment that I knew I needed to help her.

Massage Business Tips

A 60 Minute Meeting That Helped Sophia Set Her Massage Prices

It took about 6 weeks but after my 3rd session with Sophia, I asked her how her practice was going. Since she knew me a little more and had an understanding of the work I did, she told me she needed some help. She was specifically referring to her promotional efforts. I offered to meet with her and talk more. We scheduled a date and time to meet at a nearby coffee shop.

When we had our meeting, I started it by asking her where she needed the most help. She told me 4 things and then asked me where I thought she could use the most help. (Sophia is good at taking the attention off of herself.) I told her that often times, the first thing that is spoken of is the thing that could use the most attention. She understood my point and so we began talking about her massage prices.

I told her that, as a client, I still don’t know what her massage prices are. I also knew that she practiced in more than one location so I asked her to break down a typical work week. Her response was something like this:

“I work in two different locations.  At the first location, I have set hours on the weekend and do spa massage for the clients at that location. Location 2 I am on call and have 1 client a week there. It’s kind of loud at location 2 so I don’t massage there much. During the week, I can rent the room at location 1 for my own clients, as long as the room is available.”

I thought about it for minute and then said, “so you’re pretty much always on call?” She said “yes”.

Once that was cleared up, we proceeded to talk about her massage prices. Here’s the breakdown.

Location 1- she gets paid $33-48/hour for the spa clients she massages on the weekends. Location 1 books the sessions.

Location 2- she gets paid $50/hr for the one client she sees twice a week (where it’s loud).

Location 1 (but for her own clients)- she rents the room at $30/hr and charges her personal rates.

And when I asked what her massage prices were for her own clients, she didn’t have an exact answer. It depended on who was on the table.

Standardizing Massage Prices

I jumped right in and told her she needed to standardize her massage prices. She told me she was scared because she thought some clients wouldn’t be able to afford to pay more than what they currently pay.

That’s understandable but she has to prioritize her needs first. She was doing hard work and getting little compensation for it and likely stretching herself too thin.

After some discussion about taking care of herself first, I asked her, “What would you pay for a Massage?”

That’s what got her. (I could literally see the insight set in.) Sophia said she would pay $100/hour for a good session of massage & bodywork.

That helped her understand the value of good work. She thought about how expensive the cost of living in our town was, how much time and effort the work was, what other practitioners are charging, but more importantly, how good practitioners show up for their clients- with presence and intention.

All these thoughts helped her see what kind of practitioner she was and how she was undermining the value she brought to her clients.

I asked her “Are you worth $100/hr?” Energetically, she was hesitant but she shook her head yes.

I told her to set her massage prices at $100/hr and $125/90 min. Since she wanted to help make sessions affordable for clients, I recommended a package of 3 at a discount. Her massage prices for package rates are now $250 for 3 one hour sessions and $315 for 3 ninety minute sessions.

In sixty minutes of talking with me about how she valued massage & bodywork, plus, how she accepted that she was undermining the good work she does, Sophia was able to double her massage prices and feel great about the new rates.

After a week went by, I followed up with Sophia and asked if she had the opportunity to communicate her massage prices to new clients. She said yes and she was feeling great about how things were going.

How to Set Your Massage Prices

I’m super happy for Sophia. Setting massage prices to rates that you feel good about (and pay you well) is a very important step to being a successful practitioner.

I hope this story inspires you and helps you think about your current massage prices and how you’re communicating your value. If you need some help figuring out what your massage prices should be, please feel free to contact me. We can discuss where your practice is at and if my consulting services would be helpful to you.

Thanks for reading this and keep doing tremendous work. We both know how a good session of bodywork can make an incredible difference.

Posted: November 26, 2018 By: Comment: 2
Massage Websites- Home Page

Massage Websites: What To Put On Your Home Page

One of the hardest things for Massage & Bodywork practitioners is to produce marketing materials that accurately and persuasively promote their services. Some practitioners get pretty good at in person networking. Other practitioners work hard to promote their practice online. In this article, I’m going to help you with promoting your practice online- specifically with massage websites and what information (and media) to put on your home page.

For massage websites, the Home page is the most important page. It’s the page on your website that makes the first (and sometimes last) impression. Because many potential clients will first learn about you from your home page, it’s also the website page that has the greatest impact for getting visitors to look at more info and more pages.

Every time I’ve helped a Massage & Bodywork practitioner with their website, I’ve asked to look at their analytics. A few of the things I’ve looked for when I have access is their website’s total visits, how the site is first accessed, and what pages get the most views. Every time I’ve looked, the Home page is the front runner, getting the most visits.

So what information should go on your Home page?

We’ll answer this question in 3 parts:

  1. We’re going to analyze 3 Massage websites. You will see what elements are on the Home page of each example.
  2. We’ll review the list of elements and determine the importance of each one.
  3. This section will include what the best elements are for your website’s Home page. And if there’s anything still missing, I’ll make some recommendations for other things to include.

Part 1: Analyzing 3 Massage Websites

For the purpose of this article, I’m going to select 3 Massage websites from Sole practitioners. If you have a clinic with multiple therapists the information can still apply. From a random Google search for the city of Boulder, CO (where I used to live), the three websites are:

  • puremassageboulder.com
  • peacefultreemassage.com
  • amellowmood.com

Starting off with the Pure Massage website is interesting because the home page is technically one thing- a slider. It looks like this:

A slider is a website element that will rotate images repeatedly. Each image has different text and call to action buttons. Website sliders are common and many designers like to use them because they think it keeps the visitors engaged.

Okay, what does Peaceful Tree Massage have on its website’s home page? I’ve provided a preview below with callouts for what’s included on the Home page.

The callouts in the video mention what’s included on this massage website’s home page, but in case you skipped the video, here’s a recap:

  • Welcome message
  • Logo
  • Announcement (For the monthly membership)
  • Call to Action (“Book Appointment Now”)
  • Introduction/Inspiration/Mission statement
  • Benefits of massage statement
  • Gift certificate announcement
  • Client ratings and reviews box
  • Footer box with contact info, location, hours, Social Media buttons

Moving on to the third massage website, A Mellow Mood, the video below shows you what’s on the Home page.

A Mellow Mood’s massage website included:

  • Logo
  • Categories of services (with images and button links)
  • Headshot of HeatherLyn, the practitioner
  • Introduction bio to HeatherLyn
  • Three of her most recent blog posts
  • Instagram feature box (something’s broken here because the images don’t show)
  • Link to her Facebook Fan Page
  • Phone number
  • Schedule button
  • Office hours
  • Location address
  • Logo for a partner

Part 1 is now complete. Let’s move on to Part 2.

Part 2: Reviewing The Elements On All 3 Massage Websites

Between all 3 massage websites, here’s some common things that each Home page had:

Each website did their best to display what their most highlighted things are. By “things” I mean service specialties, current promotions, location of the practice, and the simplest ways to schedule a session.

You’ll want to do the same for your Massage website. You’ll also want to make sure the design, colors, fonts, images, video, and other elements match the message of your branding. Do you know what branding means? I like to define it as the look and feel (the emotional experience) someone has when they hear or see your promotional materials, talk to you about your services, or some other way to learn more about what you do. Branding is very important when making massage websites so please, please, please keep that in mind when you promote yourself.

Since I’m on the topic of design, my advice is to keep your design pretty simple so that it’s easy for potential clients to scroll, swipe, or whatever to see if they can find what they’re looking for on your site. Some website design elements (like the slider) share the information, but not in an easy to access way. (I’m a big proponent of simplicity. If you want to understand why simplicity is valuable for massage websites, and an online presence in general, I created a free course that shares more knowledge about the topic.)

Okay, let’s move on to part 3.

Part 3: What to Put On The Home Page of Your Massage Website

If you’ve read everything up to this point, you’ve done some great prep work for a deeper understanding of what things can be helpful and what cannot for Home pages on massage websites. If you’ve just skipped to this part, I commend you for your time efficiency, lol.

So, in general, you want to have these things on your Home page:

  • A way to show your specialty. In most cases, you want to make it about your work (services) and not you. (What makes you unique is meant for your About page.)
  • A specific call-to-action that stands out. For most massage websites (well, probably every massage website), a specific call-to-action like “Schedule Your Session Now” is direct, clear, and arguably the best thing to suggest to potential clients visiting your site. Using something like “Book Now” is also good but “book” has multiple meanings. Keep it simple and clear in your call-to-actions.
  • Your hours and location listed. This is very helpful information for the potential client and also Google if you’re trying to improve your website’s search engine results rankings.
  • A case study (not a testimonial) of your ideal client and how your services helped them. Avoid putting something that communicates how great you are. Rather, focus on a message that communicates how your client’s pain or problem ended because of the work you did.
  • Easy to read text (no crazy fonts), colors that are easy on the eye (soft colors- a blend of white with earth tones), and easy navigation for your menu. (This is all design stuff- it’s super important.)

In addition to the 5 things just mentioned, I also recommend the following for massage websites:

  • A logo. It was noted on some of the massage websites we reviewed and I think it’s important to have. It’s an indication of professionalism, helping potential clients take your services more seriously and develop more trust in your brand. On massage websites, logos shouldn’t take up too much space. Often, businesses with a logo put it on the upper left area of their home page (and menu bar).
  • An image of you massaging a client. Having an image like this on your massage website’s home page is like having a testimonial (case study). Potential clients who visit your massage website will be drawn to the image. It can give them a sense of what it would be like to receive from you. Some practitioners put their headshot on their Home page. I recommend doing that on the About page. On your Home page, try to showcase your work at its best.
  • Your real life magical super power. Okay, maybe not exactly that but a specific title statement that helps portray your work at its best. (In big business, this is referred to as a unique sales proposition- USP.) Some examples of this type of statement from my past students are “Rediscover your authentic self” and “Re-energize your life”. This statement can be hard to come up with but once you do, it’s something that will be the core of your communication. What I mean is you can use that statement in professional conversations to help potential clients understand what makes you the best at what you do.

Okay, there’s 8 things to make sure you put on the Home page of your massage website. As you consider these or get them on your site, keep the site design in mind. The way massage websites look does make a big difference. Online, people do judge a book by it’s cover (because that’s about all they have- their visual perception of things).

Hope the information I’ve provided here helps. If you still need more inspiration and ideas, take my free massage website introduction course. It helps provide more knowledge about websites for massage therapists, plus inspiration for making or improving your massage website.

But if you’re ready to make a website that helps turn visitors into scheduling clients, take my complete guide to creating a massage and bodywork website course. This course is the best way to make a website that has everything you need to share your services in ways that compel and convert visitors into paying clients.

Posted: November 18, 2018 By: Comment: 0
Massage Therapy Success Interview

Massage Therapy Success Interview: Allison Denney

Today, I interviewed Allison Denney from Rebel Massage. This was the first conversation we ever had. She’s an amazing teacher. Her massage tutorials on Youtube are helpful, funny, and artistically amazing. Today, our emphasis was on her perspective for what contributes to massage Therapy success.

We talked about her business but she shared more regarding really important things Massage & Bodywork practitioners can do to follow their calling. Here’s the interview:

 

It’s incredibly important to believe in yourself. If your mind’s not in the right place, failure will come faster than ever. Keep believing in yourself and focusing on the best ways you can help clients feel healthier and happier.

Posted: November 11, 2018 By: Comment: 0
Massage Websites: 3 Common Mistakes to Avoid

Massage Websites: 3 Common Mistakes to Avoid

In this article, I’m going to share with you the three most common mistakes Massage Therapists make on their websites. When the mistakes are corrected, it can dramatically improve the chances of website visitors turning into clients.

My intention is help create awareness of best promotional practices on your massage website (and the Internet) so that what you have to promote is more effective and helps you schedule more clients.

Before I begin, I want to announce a free Website Introduction Course at Bodywork Business School. The course is available to massage therapists and other bodywork practitioners for inspiration and more clear information about what constitutes a good website. You can get the free course at bodyworkbusinessschool.com.

(FYI- These 3 massage website mistakes I’m about to cover are explained in more detail within free website intro course. Bonus for you since you’re actually reading this.)

Massage Websites Mistake #1

The first mistake that I see (or actually, don’t see) on many massage websites is that they don’t put images of themselves on any of the pages. This is a mistake because massage is an intimate experience. It can require a lot of trust for clients to schedule. Especially the clients who are awesome- they have good energy and they do their part to let go of stuff when on your treatment table. By having an image of yourself on your site, it helps the level of trust from a potential client increase. They’ll judge you by your appearance (yes, this is a good thing!), but in a way of “Do I feel comfortable letting this person facilitate my personal healing?”

Helpful tip– You’ll gain even more trust if you have an image (or two) of yourself working on real clients. In a way, it’s like providing a free sample of the work you do. It can make a powerful impression for the website visitor- helping them think something like “Yeah, okay. Looks like they to really good neck work. My neck is killing me. I think I’ll schedule now.”

Voila! They’ve just converted to an actual client! (clap.clap.clap)

Massage Room With No PractitionerIt doesn’t do much good to have an image of your table and treatment room (like the image to the left). Sure, it familiarizes a potential client with your treatment room but that would be second hand (pun intended- yes!) It’s just so much better to post images of you working on your clients.

Massage Websites Mistake #2

The second mistake I see on many massage websites is that the structure of the website is made only for a laptop or desktop, which also means that the screen doesn’t adjust to phones.

When the screen for a massage website adjusts to the device it is being used on, this is called responsiveness. It’s super important because potential clients are viewing massage websites from devices of all different shapes and sizes. If they aren’t able to read what’s on your massage website, they will likely look somewhere else.

And what if you actually do have images of yourself on your massage website? Are those images responsive? Do they resize to a phone screen? If the images don’t resize, they could end up looking grainy, ugly, and that can also make the potential client (website visitor) leave your site.

Point is- be sure that your massage website is responsive.

How do you do that? It depends on what platform you are using for your website. Fortunately, some massage website builder platforms like Wix (affiliate link) are responsive from the start. Wix even provides a way for you to make your site look different on phones than on larger screens. It’s kind  of like having two massage websites within one, which is pretty cool and helpful.

Massage Websites Mistake #3

The third and most common mistake I see on many massage websites is not putting a call to action on each page.

A call to action is a statement that provides a direction. For example, “click here to schedule” is a call to action.

When potential clients are viewing massage websites, there’s a part of them that is indirectly asking for you to tell them what to do next. This comes from more of the subconscious part of their minds and is more tied to their emotions. If you provide a direction for their next step, it’s more likely they will actually do it (call you, email you, text you, etc.)

Be sure to have at least one call-to-action element on every page of your website.

Check out the screen capture of a massage website home page from a business in Austin, TX. (It’s something I googled in a whim.) I put red rectangles around the call-to-actions on the top of the home page of the website. They get an ‘A’ for the call-to-actions on their Home page.

Massage Websites With Call To Action

Okay, there’s your 3 common mistakes for massage websites. So you’ll want to make sure you include a photo of yourself, that your massage website is responsive, and you include a call to action on each page. If you found this helpful and could use a bit more guidance for your website, I encourage you to sign up for the free course mentioned earlier. (notice my call to action?)

Thanks for reading this massage websites article and hope to work with you soon.

Posted: November 3, 2018 By: Comment: 0
SEO for Massage Websites

The Best Way to Name Your Massage Website (How to Choose A Massage Website Domain Name)

What to Name Your Massage Website AddressSometimes your Massage business name isn’t going to match your massage website name. This isn’t a big problem in the long run but if possible, you do want to be as consistent as you can. This consistency is better referred to as branding. Good branding helps foster business growth. In this article, I’m going to walk you through the process of choosing a domain name for massage websites that match your business branding.

Do you currently have a legally registered business name for the city you work in?

If so, write it down on a piece of paper. If not, what do you call your business? Write the name on your piece of paper. Based on what you wrote down, you’re now going to use that to come up with the name of your massage website.

I have created an example to help you along the way. For my example, I am going to assume I DO NOT have a registered business name. When people ask me the name of my business, I say “Reid Peterson, LMT”.

In most cases, this is a common example. However, I often see creative business names on their massage cards and brochures (example: Body Kneads) but for tax and business purposes, they use their full name and social security number. (This situation by default is called a Sole Proprietor.) If Sole Proprietors have different business names on different massage marketing materials, it can cause confusion for potential clients.

The goal is to avoid confusion at all costs. You do this by making sure your massage business name, website name, and name on your cards and brochures (as well as other marketing materials) are the same.

Coming back to my example, “Reid Peterson, LMT”, I can easily make sure my business cards and brochures have that same name. But do I really want my website domain to be reidpetersonlmt.com?

In most cases, the answer is “no”. LMT is a credential we in the massage profession fully understand. Many of our clients do not. Therefore, it’s harder for them to remember the 3 letters of “LMT” because there’s little or no association in their minds. You’re actually better off naming your website something that’s easier to remember. For example, reidpetersonmassage.com. The word “massage” is easier for clients to remember.

The point is to keep things simple, relevant, and memorable.

Going back to an example like the one I just used, I suggest either using your name as the website name or adding another relevant word. Here are examples of what I would use for naming my massage website:

  1. reidpeterson.com
  2. reidpetersonmassage.com

Other options are possible but these two are likely the best fit. I actually think reidpetersonmassage.com is better because it more substantially helps people remember what I do.

If your situation sounds similar to this example, it may be your smartest option to use (yourname)massage.com as your massage website address name.

What about a situation where you have a business name already registered? That can get a little more tricky because there may be businesses with the same name as yours but in a different city, state, or country. That’s not a big deal normally but can be if they own the website address that you want.

To further clarify, I’m going to use the business name “Body Kneads” as an example. In this case, I would like to name my massage website address bodykneads.com. However, let’s assume that someone else has already purchased the website address. If I wanted that website address only, it could become quite expensive to purchase it from the current owner (Assuming they are even willing to sell it).

Massage Website Address Already TakenIf you’re in a situation similar to this, you may want to consider adding the name of the city you work in to your massage website address. This is a simple workaround and quite common these days since so many website addresses are taken.

Continuing on with this example, bodykneads.com, I would want to add my city name “Santa Barbara”. However, bodykneadssantabarbara.com is quite long. Also, there are two s’s right next to each other. Two of the same letters next to each other in a website address isn’t ideal. This could become very confusing to anyone trying to type the web address into a browser.

If you live in a city that has a long name or more than one word in the name, consider abbreviating things. For my example, instead of adding Santa Barbara to my bodykneads website address, I could add SB. The website name would then become bodykneadssb.com.

Doesn’t the two s’s next to each other look weird? Let’s fix that.

There’s a couple things I could do:

  1. Add by (your name). Example: bodykneadsbyreid.com
  2. Add “in”. Example: bodykneadsinsb.com

There are more options. Feel free to get creative. But do your best to keep things simple, relevant, and easy to remember. Always focus on those three things. (I’ve seen someone use the airport code of the city they live/work in. Example: serenitymassagepdx.com)

By now, I’m confident you have some ideas of what to name your massage website address. Before ending this article, there’s one more thought I want to make clear.

It’s common sense but do your best to avoid words that have negative associations. What I mean by this is, refrain from using words that make people think of bad or ugly things.

One prime example is a new business called Rubzy. (Rubzy has created quite an uproar from people in Massage Therapy related Facebook groups!) What do you think of when you see that word? I know, it’s not good.

Avoiding negative words for your massage website address may sound simple but be sure to take the time to really think things through. Your perception is different than your potential clients. You may miss something that someone else would pick up on (like in the case of Rubzy). Do yourself a favor by asking the opinions of your friends. Their feedback will help you in situations where you might have thought otherwise or didn’t consider a specific word to have negative associations.

I’m excited to hear what you will name your website address. If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments below.

*Did you stumble upon this article with the intention of creating an awesome Massage & Bodywork website? If so, please visit my website creation course page. I would like to show you how to make a website that really impresses your potential clients.*

Posted: June 3, 2018 By: Comment: 0