No one can deny that it is a hard economy. That being said, there are still plenty of people with money to spend on services that they value. Are you able to PROMOTE YOUR PROFESSION … TO EVERYONE!? It is a good habit to get into.
Some people have been blessed with the gift of gab and can talk to anyone about anything. Some of us are so good at talking that we do not always know when to stop or we come off as being insincere or self-serving. And of course some of us have a bit more difficulty with promoting ourselves at all. So why not start by promoting your profession. After all, on any given day if you do a Google search on massage, you will be sure to find plenty of bad stuff done by people who are working under the guise of being massage therapists. Our industry is deserving of some good PR.
Promote the Profession
I do a lot of massage work out of a luxury hotel spa where the guests treat themselves to a service and then return home. This is a great opportunity to practice promoting the benefits of receiving massage on a regular basis. I will say something like:
“More and more scientific research is proving the physical and emotional benefits of receiving massage. Besides feeling great right now, you are really doing yourself a lot of good. ”
“When you go home, why don’t you look for a good therapist who can help you with (issue that they client needs work with) – you can look for a referral on medicalmassage.com or you can ask around, maybe get a referral from someone at work or check at your gym or with a chiropractor’s office for a referral to a therapist who is trained with (that type of work.)”
In this type of instance, you do not have to be concerned with seeming self-serving or insincere because you are suggesting that the client continue to seek care with someone else. You are showing your clients that you care about their continued well-being and you are positioning yourself as a participant in the complementary healthcare field. Your professional referral just might prevent the onset of a potentially chronic condition which is life-changing in a positive way for your client. You might also be helping another massage therapist to gain a regular client. Who knows, maybe someone will do that for you one day.
When you can speak passionately and genuinely on why it is important to receive bodywork (and this includes practicing what you preach – how often do you receive work yourself?) then you will become more credible as a practitioner. There are many reasons not to be ready for a massage immediately, but if you are consistent in your approach, over time people will remember you and come to your and/or refer to you because they value what you have to say.
Old standard “Elevator speech”
Somewhere along the line someone must have suggested that you develop an “elevator speech.” Essentially this is the ability to be able to clearly, concisely let someone know what you do that can be of benefit to them and why should utilize your services in 30-seconds or less (the time that you would ride down a floor in an elevator – hence the name “elevator speech.”) Work on your elevator speech – you never know when you might need it.
New forms of media
Many of us are on Facebook, Twitter and perhaps even blogging. Even if you are not very proactive with these forms of media yourself, these are all great places to pick up information, including fast facts to share and articles to pass on. Just make sure that your resources are credible.
If you keep your services a secret or are not actively engaging potential clients, then don’t be surprised if you are not busy. Consistently hold yourself out as an expert in your field and your services will be sought after. As you become better able to promote your profession, you will find your services will be sought after.