Here is the steps that I have found to be the foundation for building a successful massage practice:
Creating an Online Presence:
Websites- The process of creating a website is really the process of creating a massage business. Having more than just an 8 page calling card type of website is now the norm. Having information about what you do and how massage works is all about building trust with potential clients. When you learn how to do it with your website, you will also be learning how to talk to people about what you do. Your website will be there 24/7 then to back you up.
Free Websites – Having a free website might be the way to start if you are really low on cash. Most will have ads on the pages but there are a few ways to do it without and still look professional. The more professional your site though, the better your chances of success.
More info on Websites can now be found in my Ebook.
Step by step outline : DIY Massage Websites
Understanding and Using Keywords for your Website.
Content for your Website – Writing at least 30 pages and more is ideal for a massage website. Don’t worry if you don’t know how to write. It is just about writing down what you would say to people anyway. Here are some ideas for articles and what to write about.
YourAbout Me Page will tell people just that – all about you. Keep everything about you on this page and don’t put it on your homepage.
Your Massage Website Homepage is all about the client. Think about what to say by putting yourself in your client’s shoes. What is in it for Me (them) should be the focus of your homepage. Think about what solution you provide for people. Don’t talk about the benefits of massage or your many types of massage you do.
Using Facebook – Facebook can be a good way to connect and stay in touch but it really works better when you have an information rich website to back you up.
Updates on Facebook
Add your website to Local Directories – Yahoo, Google, Bing
Getting More Traffic to your Website is really a process. It requires that you learn some about keywords and how to use them along with writing content for your website. It is also about getting other websites to link to you. There are many ways to do that (all free!)Getting Search engines to find your website. You have to tell them that your website is there! It is really simple to submit your website to the search engines.
Getting SE to spider your website. Learn how the search engines work and scan your website.
– Creating a solid group of people who refer to your massage business regularly will help you to find people who are more serious about their health and bodies. Finding people who value massage is the place to start.
Other Health care professionals – Doctors, chiropractors, Physical Therapists, Acupuncturists, Naturopaths and any other health care providers can be a good source of referrals.
Other local businesses
Ideas for networking
Living Ethics – Creating a solid business foundation
Ideal Client – Creating a vision of your ideal client is really about getting clear about what your values are and making business decisions based on those values. It is about creating a business with integrity. The clearer you get about what you want, the better your chances of success. Working on less than your ideal client is draining and frustrating.
Therapeutic Relationship – The therapeutic relationship is what it is all really about. It is about developing a relationship with the client that focuses totally on the clients needs. It is about learning to get your own needs for connection met outside of your massage business so that you can be more present with clients. Creating a safe container for clients to heal is about creating boundaries to support yourself and the client.
Boundaries for MT – Boundaries are often thought of as things that keep people out. Boundaries are actually what support you and your values. When you do things like work for free or don’t charge for no shows/cancellations, it can lead to feeling resentful. When you create simple boundaries to support yourself it builds self esteem and confidence in what you do.
Policies and Procedures – Your basic policies and procedures are where you create the boundaries to support you and your massage business.
Setting Your Massage Fees – Your massage fees can attract clients or keep them away. Setting lower than others in the area to take clients away from others is not necessary. Setting fees that support you are essential.
Setting Your cancellation/no show Policies – Having solid cancellation and no show policies and learning to enforce them can help you to build a successful massage business. When you respect your time, clients will to.
The Meaning of Money – Understanding that dealing with money is just a math problem and learning about all of the emotional ties we add to money can help you break out of the “Noble Poverty” myth. It is OK to make money in the massage profession. It isn’t about greed. It is just the highest form of selfcare.
Start a Peer Group
It is almost inevitable that at one time in your career you will be asked by a regular client to bill their insurance for either a car accident or for a work related injury or possibly for health insurance. You will need to know the basics of what to do and what to ask in order to get paid. Since each state/each plan work differently, I have written a book to help you understand the basics and be able to ask the right questions in order to bill and get paid. Learn how to bill insurance for car accidents/workers comp and health insurance.