resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Transparency is Key at ASA First Annual Meeting
On March 4th and 5th the American Society of Acupuncturists (ASA) held a successful first annual meeting in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Energy: For Life and For Death
Energy is a deep topic in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Qi is understood to underlie all of existence, animated or not, and the qi of the living is studied with special attention.
Filling the Gap: The Role of Alternative Practitioners in a Broken Health Care System
I have been asked many times what got me into alternative medicine. My answer is simple: I want to truly help and make a difference in people's health.
Health and Wellness Partnership
Yo San University of Traditional Chinese Medicine and The Wellness Center at the LAC + USC Historic General Hospital recently joined forces to extend care to the residents of Boyle Heights area of Los Angeles.
Identify & Adjust the Apex Posterior Sacrum
Low back pain involving an apex posterior sacrum (+θX-axis misalignment) typically presents with signs of lumbosacral joint impingement or facet syndrome.
The Value of Melatonin in Breast Cancer Prevention and Adjunctive Treatment
Although melatonin (MLT) is best known for its sleep-aid properties and as a natural remedy to prevent jet lag, extensive experimental studies suggest it possesses anticancer activity through several biological mechanisms.
Building Relationships and Referral Networks with Allopathic Practitioners
Dr. Doug, an orthopedist of 20 years, had heard stories from patients who tried acupuncture. While he was able to address many of their complaints effectively, some appeared to gain additional benefit when their care included TCM.
Day in the Life of an Advanced-Practice DC
Can you tell us a little about your background in the profession? Why did you want to become a DC? I studied at Boston University from 1968-1972 as a pre-med student majoring in biology.
Roots in the Community, Branches Far Beyond
The Jung Tao School of Classical Chinese Medicine (JTS) was founded in 1998 by Sean Christian Marshall in Sugar Grove, North Carolina, a small community near Boone in the state's westernmost mountains.
F4CP Launches New Social Media Campaign
The Foundation for Chiropractic Progress has launched a new service to help member doctors: a social media campaign called "Accelerator."
An Interview with Amanda Shayle
JW: Can you share with us some of your history and how you became an acupuncturist? What did you do prior to becoming an acupuncturist? Where did you go to school?
News in Brief
Northwestern Student Honored for Addressing Concussions Head-On; Northwestern Announces New CFO; Life U. to Provide Unique Opportunity.
Asking Patients the Right Questions
When was the last time you asked a patient a question? Maybe 30 seconds ago? But, are you asking the right questions to elicit valuable and useful information? As a healthcare provider, you've likely spent hundreds of hours learning to ask the right questions to gather critical health information from your patients.
The Rest of the Patient Story
I've written previously about allowing a patient to tell you their story – about taking the time to listen and engage all the aspects of their case history, the injury in question, and the related issues.
An Alarming Lack of Accountability
Accountability seems to be a lost quality today. The simple act of taking responsibility and doing the right thing just doesn't happen as often as it should. Maybe it is the litigious nature of our society.
Designing a Fitness Plan (Part 4): Blending Pain Relief With Healthy Aging
Pain relief is still the No. 1 reason patients come to my office. However, most of my patients have other goals as well, such as: "I want to lose 10 to 20 pounds"; "I feel old and want to slow down the aging process"; "My doctor says I am becoming a diabetic and need to exercise"; or "I'm tired and want more energy."
NCCAOM Launches New Membership Organization
The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) recently launched a new national membership organization, the NCCAOM Academy of Diplomates.
Specialized Pro-Resolving Mediators: 21st Century Inflammation Fighters
Specialized pro-resolving mediators, or SPMs, are a portion of the omega-3 fatty-acid spectrum that have been shown to have a powerful effect on reducing inflammation.
Excited to Share the Science of Chiropractic: An Interview With Dr. Heidi Haavik
Dr. Heidi Haavik has become known in the circle of chiropractic researchers as not only a rising star, but also one willing to do research that can have a major impact in the scientific world and how chiropractic is perceived.
Constructing Our Reality: The Primary Channels and Perception, Part 1
My favorite topic of discussion within Chinese medicine is the acupuncture channel systems. First of all, each of us have them. They are part of our bodies; not something external to us. To learn about the acupuncture channels is to learn about ourselves.
How Many of Your Patients Have Sarcopenia?
Figure 1 demonstrates the typical appearance of sarcopenia in the paravertebral muscles. Have you considered evaluating your patients for this problem? Sarcopenia is the progressive loss of skeletal muscle mass and function that affects the older population.
The Art of Listening
One of the most important clinical concepts for me was voiced by the legendary physician William Osler. "Listen to your patient, he/she is telling you the diagnosis." After treating literally thousands of patients, it can become almost second nature to quickly discover clues which reveal the underlying diagnosis.
Misconceptions & Opportunities With Medicare
As I speak around the country on how to properly document Medicare patient encounters, I get questions regarding opting out of Medicare. There are many misconceptions about opting out of Medicare, including just what it means to opt out.
April, 2010, Vol. 10, Issue 04
Is This Any Way to Run a Business?
By Cary Bayer
Retail advertising, discussed in my previous column, requires precise advertising layouts and copy. Make certain that the words "50 percent off" are not only prominent in type size, but the very headline of the ad as well.It should look something like the following: "50% OFF MASSAGE SALE." Directly below that, indicate what the actual cost will be for first-timers who respond. For example, if your normal fee is $70 for an hour-long session, indicate that your price has been slashed to $35. One effective way of doing this is to use the universal language of the line through the center of some image or piece of copy. Also, make certain that it's clear to any reader of your ad that the offer is only for new clients.
The buy-one-get-one-free promotion is the one I recommend more highly than the 50-percent-off special, because the new client gets to experience your healing art twice and also pays full price for it once. Your message should feature the word "free" in very big and bold letters. In recessionary times, that word is of huge importance to people. It seems as if every single aisle that I push my shopping cart through at my grocery store has a promotional offer featuring the word "free" in big letters. The supermarket isn't the only category of business doing buy-one-get-one-free appeals; so, too, are restaurants, bookstores, clothing stores and many other retail establishments. Your layout should look something along the lines of: "Buy One Massage, Get One Massage FREE" or "FREE MASSAGE when you purchase one massage for (your price)."
Don't waste any valuable advertising space mentioning the many modalities you practice. Most people, especially those who aren't familiar with massage, don't know much about neuromuscular, deep-tissue or Swedish, and they couldn't care less about each. LMT lexicon is great to share in more appropriate settings such as local chapter meetings and state/national conventions but not to the average consumer. The average client or prospect of massage wouldn't know their myofacial if it hit him in the head. Instead, talk to them about the many benefits they will receive from their service, not the service itself.
Keep your communications simple, particularly in your ad, where less is more. Open space in the ad is of value; it helps convey the feeling of relaxation the client desires to experience on your table and that you're eminently capable of delivering. Ad messages that are very copy-heavy are less effective than ones that have more "air" or negative space in them. Empty space is a good thing; think of it as a kind of Zen approach to advertising.
I recommend that any offer you're touting should have expiration dates. This can be inserted right underneath the price. If your ad comes out at the beginning of the month, give the reader about 30 days to take advantage of your special. This encourages a prompt response if people are to gain the price break. Creating a sense of urgency is important. After all, why shouldn't they get cracking to get a free massage?
I wouldn't waste ad space communicating that the new client needs to redeem their free massage within a week of getting their paid massage. That's something you can convey when they call you on the phone and book a paid session. The reason for the free massage within a week of the paid one is to give the client the experience of enjoying your work on a weekly basis so that if they become a client, they have established a small habit of seeing you weekly. Naturally, at the bottom of your ad, you'll need to include your name, phone number, Web site (if you have one), address (if you have an office) and license number.
Incorporate these creative elements in your ad and you will have some new customers. One client of mine had 19 people respond to such an ad. Sixteen of these people never came back as regular paying clients. On one level, you might argue that the advertising was a waste of several hundred dollars. After all, that's a lot of free massages to give out. If you're paying attention to the numbers, however, you will have noticed that I didn't mention the other three. One became a regular monthly client. One came in regularly every two weeks. The third opted for a weekly visit. One other thing about this weekly client: she is a medical doctor, and has been referring many patients who have also become clients.
When you consider that 16 massages were given away for nothing, was this promotion worth it? If you think it was a waste, you might never be able to grow your business. Let's try to analyze what these new clients will be netting the therapist. Let's suppose each client keeps up the massage frequency they have begun. Then let's suppose each client remains a client for what most therapists say is the average length of a client relationship: three years. At a $70 massage rate, the monthly client will pay $840 the first year and a total of $2,520 over the course of this estimated three-year term. The bi-weekly client will spend twice that amount, or $5,040, in those 36 months. The weekly client will pay $10,080 in that period. If you add all this up, you reach a total of $17,640; and that doesn't account for any MD referrals. To generate such revenues, the advertising expenditure was about $400.
To paraphrase the famous old National Airlines advertising slogan: "Is this any way to run a business? You bet it is."
Click here for more information about Cary Bayer.
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