resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Are You Really a Healthy Eater?
I always giggle a little bit (to myself) when someone comes into my office and informs me that they are a healthy eater. What exactly does that mean? Does that mean they eat sugar in moderation? And what's that, exactly?
Neuroscience: Where Western Medicine and Chinese Medicine Can Come Together
The recent advances in neuroscience are truly incredible. With this expansion of scientific knowledge, I would like to see even more research into the neuroscientific basic of acupuncture and Chinese Medicine.
Reflections: The Art of Teaching Asian Medicine
Over the past three decades, my global workshops have been translated into German, Swiss German, French, Romansch, Spanish, Lithuanian and Xhosa. Time to offer you new teachers a few tips!
The Conscious Evolution of Healing, Part 2
The idea of transmission is very important in the Chinese medical classics. According to author Claude Larre, the ancient Chinese were highly interested in the connection between things. Nothing was looked at as an isolated entity.
Mind-Body in Motion
A central goal of low back pain treatment involves the correction of dysfunctional movement patterns believed to be responsible for spinal overload.
Connecting the Dots
In 2002, I published a book on patient examination procedures that included information on the procedural coding of the recommended examinations. The book should have been published in 2000, but I had trouble finding a publisher. Why?
Old TCM Sayings: Treat the Front to Treat the Back
Chinese medicine college was, and always will be, a memorable time. It was a time of massive personal and professional growth.
Cell Health (Part 2)
Dr. Barsten, your book is about restoring "cell vitality." Can you briefly define the term? Cell vitality is more than the mere absence of symptoms or pathology, but optimum structural, physiological and energetic health.
Finding Balance in the Clinic
This past December, I celebrated 11 years in practice. I seriously don't know where the time went. I feel beyond blessed and grateful to be practicing our profound and beautiful medicine and to be helping guide my patients restore a state of optimal health.
The CDC came out with a report in March 2013 that suggests 1 in 50 children will be diagnosed somewhere on the autism spectrum – significantly higher than the 1 in 86 figure that came out in 2007. What does this mean moving forward, particularly for children?
Put the Social Back Into Social Media
Social media is more than a passing fad, it is definitely here to stay. Social media apps and channels of distribution may evolve, but the concept of social media is now big business and a part of all our lives.
Leaving Footprints on Capitol Hill: Tribute to Dr. Kenneth Luedtke (1930-2014)
It was with great sadness that I heard of the passing of Dr. Ken Luedtke.
Acupuncture and Homeopathy: Bioenergetic Brothers
Acupuncture and homeopathy share an important healing principle: bioenergetics. "Bio" means "life," so bioenergetics is literally "life energy."
It might have been a miserable start to the day in the heart of downtown San Diego. A heavy rain had soaked the large homeless population congregating near the intersection of Third Avenue and Ash Street as they waited for a free breakfast to be served at the First Lutheran Church on the corner.
Help Your Parents Stay Engaged
As much as parents may wish it were so, children do not come with an instruction manual. There's no "how to" that can be followed and no two children are alike, so what works with one generally won't work with the next.
The Top Seven Website Mistakes Clinics Make
The majority of acupuncture clinics finally have a website for their business. Having a website is crucial for being found online through Google, Facebook and review sites like Yelp.
Unlevel Pelvis in the High-School Athlete: Exploring Causes and Effects
The unlevel pelvis is all too common in the high-school athlete and if not detected, will likely cause a lifetime of musculoskeletal issues. Any provider who doesn't look for this common finding is missing critical information.
Case Histories from Bali: Treating Balinese Chidren with TCB and Shonishin
When I moved to the island of Bali in 2005, I offered my services in Bumi Sehat, which means Healthy Mother Earth, a free birthing center for poor and disadvantaged local women located in Ubud.
News in Brief
An Encouraging Sign at Palmer; NBCE Announces Retirement of Longtime Director of Testing.
Let's Speak With One Voice in 2015
For the longest time, the chiropractic profession has attempted to achieve some form of unity. On a political level, this was characterized by an ultimately unsuccessful two-year merger effort between ACA and ICA leadership from 1986-1988.
July, 2014, Vol. 14, Issue 07
Grow Your Massage Practice with Online Advertising
By Daniel Ruscigno
When it comes to growing your business, trust and referral-based marketing is ultimately going to be the deciding factor in your massage clinic's success. Providing world-class treatment that inspires your clients to tell their friends and family should be your primary marketing strategy.But, in order to get the ball rolling on word-of-mouth marketing, online advertising is a great, relatively low-cost option to get new customers in your door.
When a potential client is seeking a massage therapist, their likely first stop is going to be Google, where they will search for an MT. While preference is to organically rank at the top of the first page of search results, there are only going to be a handful of people that can occupy those positions (those that have dedicated resources to a long-term SEO strategy). The alternative way to have your clinic listed on the first page is via Google AdWords - the top 3 listings in the search results and often also along the right side of the page.
What's great about Google AdWords is that you can target people in your area that are specifically looking for a massage therapist. When setting up your campaign, the location targeting is simple: enter your office address and set a 10 to 20 mile radius to advertise to. Your next steps are to create the copy for your ad and to choose the keywords you would like to target. For example, you may want your ad to show when someone searches for: massage therapist, massage therapy, hot stone massage and deep tissue massage.
Once your advertisement is ready, it will display in the Google search results and you will only pay when someone clicks on your advertisement. You will get the most out of your Google AdWords campaign if you have an up-to-date and trustworthy looking website that the potential client will feel comfortable enough with to pick up the phone or book their appointment online.
The other online advertising giant is Facebook. While setting up a Facebook ad is somewhat similar to Google AdWords, there are two big differences. First, your ad will include an image. The image is going to be the focal point of your ad so you want to avoid using low quality or stock photography images. This is your chance to be creative and get peoples' attention. The second major difference is how you target your ads. Rather than targeting based on keywords, you target based on elements of peoples' Facebook profile. For example: age, gender, location, marital status, education and even interests.
Like Google AdWords, you will only pay when someone clicks on your advertisement. Since so many people use Facebook (and the Internet in general) from their phones, you may want to consider a responsive website, a website that changes layout based on the screen size, so that those who click on your ad from their phone can easily navigate your site.
A third, and perhaps controversial, online advertising opportunity for massage therapists are group-buying websites like Groupon. This opportunity is controversial because it tends to attract people that are only seeking the best deal (and tend not to be long-term clients), you have to deeply discount your services (usually 40-50%), is not legal in some states, and most importantly, can end up costing you money.
With the warning out of the way, there are some massage therapists that have done very well with group-buying websites. To be successful, there are a few things you want to consider. First, what is your break-even price and how many deal-buying customers do you have to convert into regular clients to make the deal worthwhile. Second, set a limit for how many deals can be sold and consider conditions on the offer like "new clients only." Third, remember that the goal is to get regular clients, so make sure you provide your best service to every customer so that not only do they come back, but they tell their friends about you – kick-starting that ever important word-of mouth marketing strategy.
With new customers coming to your door via online advertising, there is a final online technique to discuss: email newsletters. This is more of a retention and referral-based strategy and involves sending monthly email newsletters to your existing customers. To start your email newsletter campaign, you must obtain permission from your clients to send them emails. You can do this by asking them to fill out a simple form (email address and a box to check to consent will suffice) in your office. When you are asking for their consent, be sure to tell them why they should subscribe to your newsletter.
The newsletter is a way to show your expertise and you want it to primarily be informational. Writing articles that your clients would find useful, such as "3-Minute At Work Stretching Routine," will keep them interested in receiving your emails, while also keeping you at top of their mind when it comes time to book their next massage. Once you've established trust via your email newsletters, you can then use that avenue to advertise any clinic promotions you are offering.
With only a few hours of work, these online advertising options are great ways to attract new clients to your clinic and help grow your business. If you are providing a service that's worth talking about, each new client that finds you online could potentially attract several more through word-of-mouth.
Daniel Ruscigno is the co-founder of ClinicSense (previously PatientCal). ClinicSense offers practice management software that helps with scheduling, soap notes, billing, electronic insurance claims and more. For more information, visit www.ClinicSense.com.
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