A family friend of mine recently mentioned that her massage business was booming. She's an independent massage therapist and travels locally doing both table massage (on her portable massage table) and chair massage (on her portable massage chair). She's been doing massage for nearly 25 years and although she is close to retirement, she says the income is so good that she is loath to give massage up. That is where she lost me. That good? Really? I mean, I know she is talented, but how has her income improved that much? Only a few years ago she was struggling financially and had considered a second job. So, I asked her what she was doing. Her response: "Honey, I got wired."
And that, my friends, she certainly did. These days she is on Facebook® and Twitter® almost daily. She has switched to online scheduling and keeps up to speed with appointments on her shiny new iPhone. Incidentally, she uses her iPhone alongside a new app to make client payments easy and seamless. Yup, there’s an app for that. She holds Facebook® contests for free massage and keeps clients updated via Twitter® on her daily whereabouts. Her portable massage chair, she explained to me, has never gotten more use. Using her new social media savvy, she partners with local businesses and chiropractors to set up her portable massage chair in their offices for the day.
And that is just the tip of the iceberg. She believes – and I don't disagree – that times have changed and that she simply needed to jump on board. Now that she has, she is leveraging all of her strengths. One thing is for sure: her clients (and yours, too) are technically savvier today. Not surprisingly, they expect others to keep up. They don't want to play phone tag trying to schedule an appointment. They want convenience. What can it hurt to offer it to them?
Long and short - take my friend’s advice and get wired. Pick the social or technical medium that you like the best and analyze how your clients respond to it. The next thing you know, you may be the one whose portable massage chair has never gotten more use.