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Today, let’s talk about marketing and the kind of promotions you’re running.  

I see a lot of promotions, social media posts, and emails for massage therapists, and unfortunately, many of them have one thing in common…it’s all about a discount or a giveaway. Now I’ve talked before about how discounts and giveaways aren’t necessarily a bad thing when done strategically, but here’s something I’ve heard time and again…  

“the only thing that gets any response or turns into clients is a discount”  

And this is where the problem lies. If that’s all that ever gets a response for you in your marketing, then you’re not marketing well. Sorry, that may not be what you want to hear, but sometimes the truth hurts. Now, will you usually see more of a response when you promote discounts and things like that, absolutely. But if that’s really the only thing you ever get a client from, then you need to take a step back and take a really hard look at what you’re doing to market your practice.  

Again, discounts are not inherently bad, but really need to be done strategically and with the ROI in mind like any other investment. But instead of constantly running discounts, or focusing so much on what you can give away, focus on what your potential clients want and need to know. Make it personal to your target audience.   

So, for example, let’s say you have a big real estate company nearby that you’d like to market to. Instead of just throwing a discount their way to see if they’ll refer their clients to you, or maybe leave a few business cards out at their next open house or in their new homeowner folders if you’re lucky, how about giving them some brochures or rack cards with some info on ways to protect your body when moving furniture and a thousand boxes they can give to all their buyers and sellers? You know, focus on the stress and injury factor that many of those new homeowners are facing. That’s the stuff they want and need to know about. Educate them! Then focus on the sore muscles they’ll be feeling regardless of how careful they were, and that you can help ease that soreness with a great massage; and if they did injure themselves, speak to how you can help that too. Look at that…you’ve picked a target audience, connected with them by speaking to their specific problem, which also shows your knowledge and authority on the subject, and then said “here, let me help you”. That’s effective marketing…all without a discount needed.  

Stop focusing your marketing on what you can give away or what incentive you can give for someone to come in, and instead focus your marketing on what you provide for those ideal clients; the overall knowledge and experience you can offer. You have to educate and show that knowledge before they’ll trust you enough to book. Because here’s the thing; anyone can offer a discount, and as much as I know some people will get mad at this statement, just about anybody can offer a halfway decent massage to an inexperienced client. But what’s going to separate you and your business, and what’s going to build your clientele without depending so much on discounts, is when you offer more than just a massage. You offer education about their body and what they’re feeling and experiencing. You offer the solution to their specific problem. And you speak to them as if you truly understand that problem in the first place. That’s what people are looking for. Or, better yet, that’s what your ideal clients are looking for. I mean, do you really think you can build a sustainable, long-term loyal clientele that makes you happy to go into work every day, by solely relying on constant discounts? More than likely, the answer is no.  

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