skip to Main Content

6 Big Branding Mistakes Massage Therapists Make

I see a lot of massage therapists trying to brand their new businesses, or rebranding an existing business, and there are some major mistakes playing out over and over again. So let’s look at the top 6 mistakes I see massage therapists making when they’re trying to brand their business.
#1 Focusing only on the visuals of the brand
I’ve said it a gazillion times it seems, but here we go again…your brand is not just a pretty logo, some fonts, and colors. Your brand is the central theme and personality of your entire business. It’s what feeds into every service, your pricing, your ideal client, the client experience, the systems you have in place both on the front-end and the back-end of your business, the style of your treatment room, the types of linens and products you use, your marketing, and of course, yes, the visual brand elements. So, keep this in mind…when you brand or rebrand a business, you’re looking at working out all aspects.
Because great branding is what instills a certain feeling in your clients. It is the relationship between your business and your audience. It is how you speak to them and how you resonate with the perfect client for you. It is not a logo. It is not a tagline. It is not a color scheme. It is not a pattern. Those are all components that can help support a business’ brand. They are visual representations of a piece of the brand, but they are not what makes a brand. Think of it like a book. If you were writing a book, would you start with the illustrations or the story? You’d start with the story. The illustrations come once the story is there because their entire purpose is to give visual representation to the story.
But you’ve got to write the story first.
#2 Focusing only on what you like, not what your clients like
If you’re not your ideal client, then it’s not about what you like…it’s all about the clients! Your branding is meant to represent the personality of your business, to provide exactly what your clients want and need to see, smell, feel, and experience in every step. Yeah, you shouldn’t hate it, but it doesn’t need to appeal to you as if you’re the client. It needs to appeal to your ideal clients. Know who your ideal clients are and then you’ll know how to appeal to them with your branding.
#3 Becoming too attached
Too attached to an idea, a name, a service, anything, really.
As business owners, we can often become too attached to services, business names, projects, ideas, or habits. But there are two things that must always come before the things you’re attached to…your data and your clients.
No service, project, branding idea, or anything else in your business should ever supersede those two things, no matter how precious you hold it to your heart, no matter how much of a “must” you feel it is. While following your gut isn’t something to necessarily discourage, we must also be careful to avoid the trap of being so attached to arbitrary things that we let them drag our business down.
For example, let’s say that you plan on offering the standard massage stuff you see everywhere – Swedish, deep tissue, those sorts of basics. – plus you offer some spa services – scrubs, hot stones, and a foot treatment. But does that align with your ideal clients? If you’re trying to attract weekend warriors and athletes who are looking for pain relief, probably not. I don’t care how attached you are to those services, it doesn’t fit the brand your ideal clients are looking for, so the services need to change. The same goes for your business name. If it means something so wonderful to you, but isn’t congruent with the type of clients and the business type you’re trying to build, then it needs to go. This applies to every piece of the branding puzzle.
When you’re too close to anything in business, it can blind you to the reality of what needs to be done. And that’s often to get rid of something or completely rework it.
And this brings me to…
#4 Not starting from scratch
If you’re going to brand a business, especially if you’re already established at all, it can be easy to think you’ll just tweak this and that here and there. And sometimes that works, but often it’s also not as effective of a rebrand. Because you’re trying to make something work that maybe doesn’t at all. It’s important to scrap every bit of branding you have, every idea of what you think is important, and start completely from scratch.
And that leads me to…
#5 It’s not cohesive
Again, there is a theme and personality that needs to be woven into every single aspect of your business. Branding isn’t just a logo and colors in a few different spots. It’s everything. The easiest way I can think to explain this is to just give you the rundown of how I walk people through this process of fully branding a business. This is the way my Develop Your Brand class is broken down, and there’s a reason I do the steps in this order. It’s important for this cohesiveness to really weave into everything.
First, you develop your central theme.
Then you develop your services.
Then your client experience, step-by-step.
Then your name your business and develop a slogan or tagline.
Then you develop your copywriting which includes your tone, your words, naming your services, and writing their descriptions.
Then onto developing the central concepts of your brand visuals.
Then your branding suite.
Then your printed marketing materials.
And finally, your digital marketing materials.
All of it has to be cohesive; from the time someone first sees or hears anything about your business, to their booking, their check-in, their service, their checkout process, their follow-up, and any marketing you do in between. All of it has to be cohesive.
And lastly…
#6 Not considering long-term goals
You’re not going to want to rebrand in big ways very often or your business likely loses consistency and trustworthiness with your community, so remember that this new brand needs to work for the next 3-5 years at least…and should be able to easily evolve as your business evolves. There’s no sense in going through all this work and overhauling things like this only to redo it in a year or two because you didn’t look very far into the future. This is why I’m a big proponent of setting some 1-year, 3-year, 5-year, and 10-year goals for you and your business…so you can be sure as you develop this brand, that it’s going to work long-term.
If you want me to walk you through branding your business step by step, check out my Develop Your Brand class and as part as the 30-Day Business Transformation class.

Hey there! I'm a massage therapist, educator, writer, and business pro helping massage therapists around the world build successful businesses. My goal is to give you everything you need to start, run, and grow a profitable massage practice that supports a life you love, all without the headaches I went through learning how to do it myself.

Back To Top