How easy do you make it for your massage clients to find you?
You can be the best massage therapist in the world, but if nobody knows you, it doesn’t help anyone, neither you nor your potential clients.
If you have an established massage therapy business, are well known, and have all the clients you can handle, you might not need this information.
But if you are part of the huge group of massage therapists who are trying to build a bigger customer base, get more referrals, and get the word out about your skills, then I have some tips for you.
Disclaimer: If you are an employee and work for a spa, let’s say, and all your clients come from the marketing efforts of your spa, this information is not as important for you. However if you work for yourself, if you have your own business, then this article is very relevant.
So – do you have a web and/or social media presence already?
Excuses and the “some day I’ll get around to it” syndrome
Oh my, I can already hear all the objections:
- I am not a tech type person
- I don’t have the money for a massage website
- It is too complicated for me
- My computer is ten years old and I only know how to read emails
- Technology is not spiritual. I just practice the law of attraction.
- I put the universe in charge of my promotional needs
- I will get around to it some day when I have more time
- I will think about it
- I ran out of excuses but I will make up some more as soon as I get around to it
Here is another one: “Shama, that’s all easy for you to say. You have one of the biggest massage websites on the internet and when I google your name (try googling “shama kern”), I get hundreds of hits. But what about poor me?”
My past failures power my massage business today
How did I get so good at pointing out everybody’s objections and excuses? I can tell you – at one time in the past I have used most of them myself.
I have learned a lot since then. Now I will share my experience with you in this series. I will help you to greatly improve your web presence and your promotional system for your massage business.
And it can happen a lot faster for you than it did for me since I did it the hard way – I figured it all out by trial and error. It is much easier to have someone guide you along the path.
Action plan, one step at a time
Time for some action. Did you ever hear the saying “Even if you are on the right track, you will get run over if you just sit there?”
Here is another golden nugget: “You don’t have to be great to get started, but you have to get started to be great”.
So what’s the secret for success?
1. Make a plan and follow it (I can help with the plan)
2. Start with the first step only and stick with it until it is done.
There is a saying: “How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.” Or a more politically correct version of this wisdom is that “Each journey begins with a single step.” If you take enough of those steps, one day you will get to your destination – in this case, a better online presence.
Building an online presence for your massage business
Let’s get started with tips on how to attract clients and promote your healing arts business.
I won’t tell you (yet) that you need to build a massage website, get profiles on twitter, facebook, linkedin, pinterest, youtube, flickr, do guest blogging, online seminars, etc.
Don’t get me wrong, these are all great ideas, and you should do some of them (eventually), but let’s start with something simple, a first step.
We want to keep overwhelm and information overload at bay since those are the things that will stop us in our tracks. (Remember what I said earlier about getting run over on those tracks?)
I have a friend who started an import business of clothes from Thailand, but it never took off. A big reason was that she sold only at trade shows, but had no web presence.
If you don’t have a web presence along with your physical business, you are at a big disadvantage. It is a well-known fact that people often need to see or be reminded of something quite a few times before they decide to act on it.
Several students of my Thai Massage online training courses told me that they browsed my website for months before they finally decided to invest in one of my courses. Without an active website, I would have lost them.
Some facts about business cards which you might not know
Let’s start talking about massage business cards. You have one, don’t you? But – does it have your picture on it?
Every few months or so I go through a stack of accumulated business cards. If I cannot remember who the person is that gave me the card, I throw it out. I throw out lots of cards! But if I see a picture, I almost always remember that person and I keep the card.
But here is a better way. How about an online massage business card? This is like a mini-website that tells people who you are and what you do.
It shows your picture, your address, your website, your social sites, your services, or whatever else you want to show, all on one simple and easy to set up page.
Online business card advantages for your massage business
- Printed cards have to be handed out to one person at a time. But online cards are indexed by Google and can be found by anyone who is interested in the massage topic without ever having seen you in person.
- You can make those cards yourself without having to go to a print shop
- Unlike printed cards, online cards can be totally free (if you follow my suggestion)
- You can change your online massage business card at any time easily (I changed mine twice while I was writing this article)
- Online cards can display a lot more information than your printed ones
- If you don’t have a real website, you can have a link to your online business card on your printed business card.
- You can include a link to your online business card as part of your email signature
- If you post comments anywhere on the web, like on social websites or forums that relate to your massage business, you can include a link to your online massage business card.
- You can put a link to your online appointment calendar on the card
Action steps for online business cards for your massage business
Are you getting the idea? Are your creative juices flowing? Alright, so where do we get such an online massage business card?
First, take a look at my card to get an idea how it could look like: https://about.me/shamakern.
Then go to https://about.me and sign up for a free account. They make it so easy that anyone can figure out how to create a nice card in minutes.
All you need is access to a computer (does not have to be your own), and a nice picture.
Finding background images
What if you don’t have a nice background picture? Easy, go to https://images.google.com/ and search for what you want – let’s say ‘nature backgrounds’, for example.
Just be sure to first click on the “Tools” link on the top of the page above the images. Then click on “Usage Rights”.
You will see a drop-down menu with several options. Do not select the ‘All’ option since this includes pictures that you should not use. This is important because you don’t want to use a picture that is copyrighted and that you cannot legally use.
This screenshot of the google images search page is accurate as of February 2022 which is when I took it. Google often changes things around, so by the time you see this, it might look a little different.
“All” is the default search parameter under ‘Usage Rights’, but that’s exactly the one you should not use since it shows everything in the results including copyrighted pictures.
Once you find a picture that you like, hover the cursor over it. If you see a text that says ‘licensable’, you cannot use it. Make sure to not use copyrighted images.
Then click on the picture of your choice. This will open it up in a new window in a larger size. If you hover over it, the size in pixels will show up on the bottom left.
Make sure that the picture is big enough for your background. Here are the image dimensions which about.me recommends:
Small Template 240×240 pixels or larger. Medium Template 1240×1240 pixels wide or larger. Large Template 1680×1050 pixels or larger.
Then RIGHT click on the picture (that’s how you do it on a Windows computer). You will see a pop-up menu. LEFT click on “save image as”. The exact wording depends on your browser.
Another menu will open. Browse to your desktop and save the picture there. This is important so that you find the saved picture easily when you upload it to http://about.me.
Many small steps will ultimately turn into big results
This is your first mini step towards creating your online presence for your massage, healing arts, yoga, or any other business. Just do this step until it is complete and your online business card looks attractive.
Your massage business will look a little more professional, your confidence will be a little higher, and you will be one step closer to being successful.
Visit Thai Healing Massage Academy’s online training library with 20 Thai Massage courses for all your training needs and all levels of skills.
The author, Shama Kern, is the founder of Thai Healing Massage Academy. He has been practicing and teaching Thai Massage for over two decades and he is the creator of 20 Thai Massage online training courses.