resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Turning a Blind Eye to History – and Reality
The American Medical Association is taking the Supreme Court's Feb. 25, 2015 decision exactly as it always does – by turning a blind eye to history, legal precedent and reality.
The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine
My Masters thesis was titled, "The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine," which highlighted several reasons why it is hard for these two worlds to mix.
Low Back Pain in Professional Golf: A Common Muscular Relationship
Every sport creates its own unique demands on the body. Some sports require such a myriad of body positions that assessing pathology is often difficult and unpredictable.
A View From the ER
The University of Western States has inked an innovative agreement with local nonprofit health system Legacy Health whereby UWS sports-medicine fellows can experience observational clinical rotations in emergency-room settings within the Legacy system.
How Much Do You Know About the Benefits of Birds Nest?
Edible bird's nest is the nest made by the Swiftlet bird of Southeast Asia that is usually prepared as a soup and prized in Chinese culture as a healthful delicacy.
PCOM Granted Regional Accreditation
Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM) recently announce it has received regional accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). This achievement reflects five years of hard work on the part of faculty, staff, and students.
Animal Acupuncture: A Case Study in the Treatment of Traumatic Injury in the Equine
The rise of animal acupuncture in the U.S. began in the early 1970's as a result of the work by members of the National Acupuncture Association in Westwood, Calif.
Medicine is Clumsy, Don't You Be
All medical systems have clumsiness in them. If the technique isn't, the practitioner is. Everyone in every form of medicine is striving to improve. That is why we call it practice.
The Tide is Rising in the Acupuncture Profession
Former President Ronald Regan said, "When the tide rises all boats float." The tide is rising for the acupuncture profession. Many forces outside the profession are helping the tides to rise.
A House Divided?
The American Chiropractic Association's House of Delegates voted on 30 resolutions at its annual business meeting in Washington D.C., but two in particular took immediate center stage due to their controversial nature.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
Sleep, Less Sleep or No Sleep?
I had a dream I wasn't getting enough sleep. It was a very realistic dream, even though I was probably slightly awake and not really deep dreaming. Most likely I had been dozing, caught in that twilight of sleep and wakefulness.
Integrating Art with Clinical Practice for Patients with PTSD: The Artemis Project
Are you restricted by those one-on-one clinic dynamics? Why not join colleagues and clients in experimental group settings? Three of us volunteered to do just that in Austin on behalf of women veteranss from all branches of the service.
Term Limits: What's in a Word?
It was the French historian and philosopher Voltaire who once declared the Holy Roman Empire was neither holy nor Roman nor an empire.
Talking to Patients About Lumbar Facet Denervation (Medial Branch Neurotomy)
Lumbar facet denervation, more appropriately termed medial branch neurotomy (MBN), is a procedure that may be considered when patients suffer from recalcitrant non-radicular axial back and/or leg pain.
The Acupuncturist's Problem
I want share with you some observations and insights into what seems to be the most common problem my colleagues in the acupuncture profession struggles with. If you also struggle with this problem, I hope you get a valuable "aha" moment from reading this.
5 Tips for Using Pinterest to Market Your Practice
Pinterest is a very popular, but often under-utilized, social media platform where people can bookmark, or "pin," fun and interesting things from all across the internet.
Applying the Thin Skull Principle
The "thin skull" principle, also known as the "you take your victim as you find them" principle, is a legal principle that can be summed up by the following statement.
Functional Hip Impingement (Part 1)
Every time I sit down to write an article, I realize how much more there is to know about musculoskeletal pain. I also learn something new every time. (I want to give special thanks to Lucy Whyte Ferguson for assisting with this article.)
Marijuana, Apathy and Chinese Medicine, Part 1
This article was written in response to the unheeded acceptance of marijuana as a harmless substance that potentially does good when used for the medical relief of pain.
January, 2011, Vol. 11, Issue 01
When Money Is Tight: Five Tips for Marketing Cheaply and Effectively
By Diana Moore
Small businesses face a perpetual challenge: how to grow the business and stay within the marketing budget at the same time. Follow these tips to market your bodywork business for next to nothing.
Be Picky About Business Cards
Business cards are arguably the cheapest marketing tool around. They are also fun to choose! But don't forget that you want a business card that will dazzle the people you hand it to.
First, look around and see what appeals to you. Be picky about how it will represent your business. What graphics do you find inviting, yet won't interfere with the readability of the text?
Second, decide what you want it to say. Make your message short and concise so people can quickly grasp what you do in their brief look at your card. Include your name and/or business name, contact phone number(s), e-mail/Web address and possibly your physical address. Then add a tagline or summary statement about what you do best: "Sports Massage and Injury Treatment"; "Chair Massage at Your Worksite"; or "Pregnancy and Infant Massage". Don't list techniques like myofacial release or neuromuscular therapy that people may not understand. That's for your brochure and your Web site. Instead briefly state, for example, that you can help relieve back pain, headaches or chronic tension.
Third, get them professionally printed.
Target Your Ideal Clients
It is a waste of time and money to market to people who don't care about what you have to offer. Look at the second step again. What did you write for the tagline for your business card? Does this tell you anything about what kind of person benefits most from your work? Those are the kind of people who will care about your ability to help them, whether they are pregnant, seniors or people with chronic pain.
Get creative and focus your marketing efforts (and dollars) on these ideal clients. Go out and find places they go: community centers, gyms, office buildings, etc. Opportunities abound in these arenas. Hospitals and corporations, for example, have employee bulletin boards where you can post flyers. Look for places you can leave business cards, such as clinics, salons or gyms. Write articles for corporate or community newsletters that target particular groups.
Boost Client Rebooking
Encourage your clients to come in more often. One marketing adage says that getting repeat business costs less by far than gaining new clients. But massage therapists often don't want to seem pushy. Realize that people rely on professionals to help them determine how to cope with challenges. You are one of those professionals. If you want to help your clients feel better, you will encourage them to receive bodywork regularly. This can be as simple as having your schedule book out as your clients are leaving, asking them, "Would you like to reschedule now?"
Clients who come in sporadically often appreciate efforts made to contact them. Use marketing to encourage clients to re-book at the same time you affirm that you care about their well-being. Call to find out if their last session helped. Send a postcard or e-mail announcing mid-day openings to clients with flexible schedules. Mail or e-mail newsletters or articles with self-care information.
Make the Most of E-mail
Unless your clients aren't the online sort, use e-mail to notify them (inexpensively!) of your availability. Online communication reinforces the warm, personal connection you establish with clients in your studio. It encourages back and forth exchanges, helpful to the client and good for building a more client-centered practice. Here are some examples. Send e-mails about an upcoming special targeted to particular clients who might like it. If a client has a particular condition, send information about an upcoming yoga, tai chi or other class that might help. If a client is having a particularly stressful time, send a check-in e-mail and share your openings that might fit his or her schedule. To take it a step further, send an e-mail newsletter, an even more in-depth client education tool.
Contact Other Professionals
Whether they are looking for injury treatment, spa experiences, stress reduction or something else, your ideal clients seek out what they need in the community. Who are the other professionals providing solutions to the problems characteristic of this group? Let them know what you are doing.
Say your ideal clients are professional women over 40. You know that most of them get their hair cut, styled and colored. Many of them workout in a gym and/or attend yoga, Pilates or tai chi classes. Some of them have sought mental health counseling and support. Send a letter of introduction to hair stylists, personal trainers, directors of yoga studios or mental health counselors. Then drop by, introduce yourself and ask if you can leave your business cards. Hand out gift certificates or discount coupons and invite them to come experience your work. You may even want to give a presentation or two to groups such as the staff at your favorite health club or your local chapter of the American Holistic Nurses Association. None of these efforts will cost much other than your time.
If advertising isn't in your budget, don't give up on marketing. There are plenty of good avenues for expanding awareness of your practice in your town and community. Try one of these suggestions at a time, and find out what works for you.
Diana Moore has worked in marketing for more than 10 years. Currently, she works as a writer and editor for Natural Touch Marketing for the Healing Arts. Before her career in marketing she practiced massage therapy for 14 years, many of them as a hospital-based massage therapist in Olympia, Wash. Diana also teaches yoga to people with heart disease and other chronic conditions. Reach her at
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