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July 6th, 2018

Today’s blog/video is all about how to market to local businesses. So whether you’ve been eyeing the local gym, a factory, or some nearby schools, you will want to watch this.

When you think about approaching a business in your area, whether you’re looking to get their employees or customers to become clients, there’s a lot to consider. I mean…who’s the best person to talk to? Should I offer some sort of special or package pricing for their employees or customers? Do I need to do a free chair massage gig to get the ball rolling? Do I just show up or call or try to find out if they have any events scheduled? These are all normal questions that can make the task seem daunting. But there’s two ways you can approach this; one is a little more direct, and the other is a bit more subtle.

First, you can, yes, just call and make the offer. So for example, let’s say you want to go into a nearby school and offer chair massage or even just a special deal for the teachers. That’s great! Call the front office and just ask. If the person who answers can’t set it up or doesn’t know, ask who you can speak to that handles that sort of thing. You could offer to come in just once, or even once a month if you want to make it a regular thing and give chair massages as kind of a show of appreciation for the teachers and staff. It’s a great way to give back and allows you some time to get to know the staff and educate them on what you offer, and the benefits of it. Or if you’re not big on the idea of doing chair massage (because I know a lot of therapists hate it), ask if you can bring in a bunch of gift certificates, promotional pricing flyers, or whatever printed something you’re going to be offering, and have them placed in the teachers’ boxes. If the idea of making that call this is a little scary to you, try writing out a script or at least some detailed notes of what you want to say so you can feel more confident on the phone.

Now let’s look at an example of how you might approach something more subtly. So let’s say you want to market to a local gym and all of their employees and members would get some sort of special deal with you, but you don’t want to just walk in and ask if you can do that. First, they probably wouldn’t turn it down, but sometimes it’s best to build a bit of a relationship with the business first. So how about actually going and partaking in that business. So if we’re talking about a gym, sign up for a membership and make the effort to get to know everyone from the janitor to personal trainers and the manager. If you’re applying this to a retail center of sorts, or an office building, find a way to do business with them and build that rapport on a personal level. THEN once you have that sort of professional relationship built, you can more confidently approach the subject of marketing yourself to them. This is also a great avenue if you’re not sure you even WANT to have that professional association with a particular business – you know, you want to make sure that their business aligns with yours and that it would be a good fit to offer them something. You get to do a little research to make sure you want to offer something special for them, or want to network more with that particular company. When it comes to marketing, more specifically network marketing, you can’t just sit on the sidelines and watch. You’ve got to get out there and make a connection. Go in and make a purchase and talk to the owner or manager. Start with small talk and compliment their business. Then try to find a smooth segway into what you do and how you could benefit their clients. THEN you can approach a possible partnership or mutual benefit setup. You want these interactions to be genuine, not the thousandth person they’ve had come through their store that month who’s just looking to drop some business cards. You can’t solely look out for yourself. Yes, they can help boost your business, but you need to try to do the same in return. One of the simplest ways to do this is, when you make that purchase, take a picture and post it on your personal and business social media pages, and tag that business! Or if it’s something like a gym, go workout and post a selfie on your business page with #selfcare and tag their page. Things like that go a long way! You’re reaching your audience and sharing a bit of personal info, but also helping to promote another business in your area and getting in front of their audience too.

Another idea would be, the next time you want to do a contest or giveaway, market specifically to small business owners. Ask your followers to tag a business owner in the comments who deserves a massage; they’ll both be entered to win a free (whatever you decide).

Whether you have hopes of referrals, or want to offer something special to their employees for a boost in sales, when approaching other businesses, you need to build that network in an authentic, personable way. And if you’re worried about how to approach it, take a few deep breaths, plan out exactly what needs to be done, and step out of your comfort zone! These things don’t just magically happen – you’ve got to get out there and do the work – and sometimes that work is not exactly in your comfort zone.

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