Mar 2008 Massage Marketing Newsletter

“From The Massage Table: Marketing and Motivation That Works”

March 31, 2008
Volume IV, Issue 9

Welcome to “From The Massage Table”! My name is Michael Humphreys, cofounder of Help Your Practice.

Each month, From The Massage Table will hit your email inbox with the latest news, special offers and great massage business tips that can help you create the massage practice of your dreams.

Want to make sure you don’t miss an issue? Please add mike@helpyourpractice.com to your address book and keep the spam filters from eating your subscription!

Check It Out: “Instant Massage Marketing”

Imagine if you could take proven massage marketing pieces and just add your own name and contact information…Well, imagine it no more!

Michael has taken some of the most successful massage marketing pieces from his own massage practice to create Instant Massage Marketing.

To learn more about Instant Massage Marketing, go to:
http://www.helpyourpractice.com/instant-massage-marketing.htm

Okay, onto this month’s newsletter!

Monthly Motivational Tip

I’m normally a highly motivated person.  I embrace each day as a challenge to become one step closer to my goals in every aspect of my life.

But sometimes life can throw you a serious curve ball.

Case in point, at 3:50 pm on Saturday March 8th, my wife Sarah was involved in a major 2 car accident in the King of Prussia, PA area.  She was on 202 South when a car traveling on 202 North slid off the road, across the grass divider, and into Sarah’s lane.

She was in the left lane and hit the passenger’s side of the other SUV.

Sarah’s 2003 Honda Odyssey was totaled. So was the other car, a Ford Explorer.

My wife was doing under the posted speed limit.  The other driver was ticketed for speeding and causing the accident.

Sarah got hit in the chest, abdomen, and arm by the airbag.  Something on the dashboard punctured her shin into the knee joint.  She’s majorly bruised everywhere.

They’ve done surgery on her knee to remove the foreign object and she’s okay now.  She’s almost 33 weeks pregnant too.

Fortunately, the baby is okay too.

My wife will be on crutches with a leg immobilizer for a few weeks but the docs say she’ll make a full recovery.

The amazing thing is if the guy had slid a few seconds later, he would have hit my wife on the drivers side
of her car instead of sliding right in front of her mini-van.

Talk about a lucky break.  And I’m damn happy for that break too.

Now, I’m eyeball-deep in the family care, insurance adjusters, and medical docs.  I’m spending extra time helping my wife in her time of need.  I’m averaging 19-20 hour days right now and not sleeping real well either.

But I’m all right with that too.

Unlike my usual motivational talk, I’m going to suggest something different today.

Don’t get me wrong, achieving goals is great.  So is growing your business and earning more money from your efforts.

But it’s moments like this that remind us how precious our friends and families are.

Take a moment and tell your precious ones how much they mean to you.  Many times we get so busy with life that we forgot to tell them how much they mean… until it’s too late.

Take a break from the hustle of your daily life and reconnect with someone near and dear to you… your heart and mind will thank you!

Massage Marketing Monthly Tip

This month’s tip will focus on one of the hottest topics in the U.S. news these days: Recession.

Or should I say POTENTIAL recession.

Because according to the financial indicators that are worth paying attention to, our economy has cooled off, not declined.  Of course, if you listen to the American media, it’s gloom and doom city already.

And as a long-time client of mine who has sold television advertising for over 20 years once told me, the media loves “if it bleeds, it leads the news”.  So the U.S. media is going to sell the idea of recession until everyone believes it and makes it into a reality.

When most massage therapists hear news of a potential recession, they act like many other business owners.  They look for a business cave to go hide in and pray that the recession that passes soon.

They don’t do any marketing or advertising.

They don’t spend any money on their business or anywhere else unless they absolutely have to.

In short, they go on a hibernation diet.

Once they hear that the recession is over, they emerge from their business cave, stretch, and say to themselves, “Okay, lets start running our business again.”

Am I being a bit too harsh?  Perhaps.

But I’ll share with a great one-liner that a buddy of mine recently shared.

“The Meek Don’t Inherit The World.  They Get The
Leftover Table Scraps From the Night Before’s Feast.”

As a massage therapist for over 14 years, I’ve seen more than one recession.

The first recession that came, I hid in a business cave and almost starved.  Turns out that going on a financial starvation diet didn’t go over real well with me or my personal spending habits.

The second recession came in 2001… only this time, I didn’t hide.  I went on the offensive and continued marketing my massage business.  So while my competition were either treading water or going out of business, my massage center was growing at a 25-50% per year clip.  And when the recession was over, I was the proud owner of one of the largest massage centers in my area.

“Okay, Michael… Suppose We Are Heading For
Gloom and Doom… Err, I Mean A Recession.  What Should I Do?”

Good question!

First, it’s not just one thing that you need to do.  In fact, when it comes to running a massage business, it’s rarely just one thing that acts as the “magic bullet” and cures every ache and pain your business has.

Here’s the 5 steps I recommend you follow to walk through a recession and emerge practically scrape-free.

1. Look for non-marketing expenses that you can cut.

You need to remove unneeded expenses that aren’t generating sales.  For example, when I sat down and went over my massage therapy center expenses, I discovered that I was spending over $400 per year on magazine subscriptions for our waiting area.  Yet, the average client was waiting less than 5 minutes for their appointment.  I slashed that budget down to $100, keeping the magazines offering the best bang for my buck.  That leads to the next point.

2.  Take part of the non-marketing expenses monies you uncover and use it to market your business.

Put the rest into a savings account so that you are prepared in case of an unexpected expense arises.

3.  Track your marketing and advertising.

Take the marketing campaigns that are not working or are under performing and try revamping them.  Or replace them with something new.

4.  Market your business within reason.

Create a budget for your marketing and stick to it.  A good rule of thumb is use 3-5% of your total sales as your marketing budget.

5.  Focus on your existing clients first.

It’s much easier to get existing clients to come back to you than to attract new clients.  Even inactive clients of yours can be reactivated with the right marketing campaigns.  If you have little or no clients, then you will put more emphasis on attracting new clients.  For more information on getting more repeat bookings and attracting new clients, check out some of the back issues of this newsletter or my massage marketing manual Help Your MASSAGE Practice.

A recession doesn’t have to mean “gloom and doom” to your massage business.  Focus on marketing smartly and you will see your massage practice grow and prosper while your competitors are struggling!

Got Feedback Or A Success Story You Would Like To Share?

Drop Michael an email at mike@helpyourpractice.com and tell him now.

That’s all for this month. I look forward to talking with you next month.

Seize the Day,

Michael Humphreys

Help Your Practice

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